5 Reasons You Should NOT Hire Us As Your PR Firm
by WordWrite Staff, on Jan 9, 2015
There are many reasons we like to believe clients choose to work with us — perhaps it’s the specialized expertise we provide, the superior service we offer or the unique problems we solve. Whatever the reason, the fact remains that you do have choices. In some cases, lots and LOTS of choices.
If you Google “public relations firm” the result is millions of entries — or to be slightly more specific, 39,200,000 of them. That is a lot of scrolling. Sounds like a nice weekend project, huh?
After working with clients for the past few years at WordWrite and having spent more than 17 years in PR collectively, I can certainly tell you how we can assist you. Let’s face it, though, you’ll hear many of the same things from other PR pros, which leaves you trying to figure out who will be a better fit working with your company, who has the most impressive client roster and who had the best shoes (not me today, as I’m wearing my trusty snow boots).
How about we cut to the chase? Let’s talk about why you shouldn’t work with us. That’s right — rather than tell you the reasons I believe we’re a great choice, let’s keep it simple and focus on why you shouldn’t give us a thought. I realize it sounds counter to what I should be doing, but bear with me a few minutes….
If you are hiring a PR firm because you don’t have time to focus on PR, don’t hire us.
While it makes logical sense that you hire outside help when you don’t have the time to do it yourself, this is a major red flag for us. I’ve heard no fewer than 1,000 times our boss say to prospects, “PR is not something we do to you, PR is something we do with you.” He’s right — 100 percent. We understand how the media works, we can craft compelling messages and we can certainly help share your story, but there is no better storyteller than you. It’s imperative that we work collaboratively with you by speaking and communicating on a regular basis — at the very least, weekly. You are the subject matter expert and we are the communications consultants. Together, we are a powerful team.
If success is measured by media clips, don’t hire us.
There was a time when executives considered PR efforts a success based on the number of newspaper clips they could hold in their hand the next morning. Bonus if the story was above the fold, right? Those days are over, folks. First, in general, few read paper newspapers in print anymore. Second, well, there are just way too many reasons to get into them all, but suffice it to say, there are new ways of measuring success and we are always happy to have those conversations with prospective clients. We get that the pressure is on to prove ROI and we also know that PR still seems intangible to most. We know sales/results are key, so just ask us. We work with our clients to outline the most effective model for measuring success and we promise you won’t get any paper cuts from news clips — only results. To read more about our thought process when it comes to PR measurement, check out one of my colleague Jeremy Church’s blog posts:
- Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff When Measuring PR And Value In Marketing Efforts.
- Media Relations Value Best Measured Through Quality, Not Quantity.
If you believe all reporters are biased and suck at their jobs, don’t hire us.
I can assure you, this is a recipe for disaster. Several of us are former reporters so we know how they think and we understand what they need to write a story. HINT, it’s not an ad about your product/service. Working with reporters is the same as working with any business contact. It’s a professional relationship with something in it for all involved. It’s not a one-sided, “only write what I approve” type of arrangement. This will never work, you will never see results and you will be disappointed and angry. Thus, we know immediately we are not a good fit for you. To learn more about what reporters look for and what they avoid, read “Reporters Share Their Top PR Pet Peeves.”
If “urgent” means you’ll get to it later in the week, don’t hire us.
The news is a fast-paced, 24/7 business, especially with social media. If you want to participate, you simply must make yourself available. If you don’t, I can assure you that your competitor(s) will. It’s not uncommon for an opportunity to come up that requires an immediate interview or a phone conversation within the hour because the reporter is on deadline. They live and breathe by their deadlines. Help them out by respecting what they need, when they need it. Fifteen minutes might make the difference between success and a missed opportunity.
If you believe your story is better when embellished, don’t hire us.
We are masters when it comes to writing, but that doesn’t mean we write fiction. We need clients to be authentic and transparent when working with us — and we promise the same. It’s a vicious cycle when companies try to cover things up. We can’t help if honesty and integrity aren’t top priorities for company leadership. To see a great example of an authentic story, read Paul Furiga’s post, “Authentic Story of the Month: Safi Airways In-flight Magazine.”
Now, if you’re still reading and want to learn more about how we CAN help you because you don’t believe any of these five things, let’s start a conversation.