Make Your Marketing and PR Agency a Partner, Not a Vendor
It seems that everyone now wants to become an entrepreneur. Many feel that a great idea and strong skills to execute it will make them destined for success. But while you, the new business owner, can’t do without strong skills, education and enthusiasm if you want your startup to be successful, choosing a marketing and PR agency to work with is of essential importance when it comes to your company’s publicity and media exposure.
With the growing number of entrepreneurs and startups, large and small PR agencies are trying to keep up with new technology and modern means of communications. Almost every agency now uses social media, in addition to traditional media, to promote their clients and build audiences. But when it comes to understanding clients’ products and needs, marketing and PR agencies are not all equal. Therefore, before committing to a particular agency, it is important for you to have a clear idea of what your expectations are. This could save you time, money, and quite a few moments of frustration.
In order to get the most out of a marketing and PR agency, business owners should see a it as a potential partner and strive for teamwork and collaboration. If you are a business owner looking for the best option for your startup, spend some time with different teams before you commit to a particular agency. While it is important to look over the the agency’s clients, don’t fall for impressive client lists since they might not be current. Besides, the fact that this agency was a great fit for someone else’s business doesn’t mean that it is the right fit for you. There are big agencies that handle clients from different fields, but many times the best choice for a startup is a niche agency that concentrates on products similar to yours.
The best approach when choosing an agency is to ask questions and state clear expectations. Make sure that the agency’s team understands your product and is genuinely interested in it. If people like the product, they will work hard to promote it. But if they don’t understand it, they might get bored, which means that they probably won’t do the best job promoting it.
In addition, you have to have a vision about the future of your company so when you meet with your potential marketing and PR agency, you can discuss not only your present, but also your future goals. Have a clear vision of what success means to you and make sure to communicate it to the agency’s team so they can work with you towards achieving these goals.
Many new entrepreneurs often have unrealistic expectations which leads to misunderstanding and moments of frustration between a client and an agency. Goals such as “I want to be on Oprah,” or a certain number of feature-length articles in major publications might not be the best place to start. A good agency will have a clear idea what is achievable within a certain period of time and should let its clients know what they could expect.
The most important thing to remember is that there should be a two-way communication and mutual trust between a client and an agency.