Public relations agencies provide a wide range of services to their clients, from media relations and public affairs to crisis management and social media. They help companies build positive relationships with the public and key stakeholders to help them achieve their business goals.
In this blog, we’ll discuss what a PR agency does, its roles, and what stellar PR pros can accomplish for you and your business.
One of the most critical decisions a company can make is selecting the right PR agency for their business. There are many different public relations firms to choose from, so it is essential to do your research and ask the right questions.
What are the Roles of a PR Agency?
PR agencies take on many roles for their clients, and as technology shapes and molds the future, those roles continue to shift and change along with it. However, even if functions look slightly different from 5-10-15 years ago, the overall role of a PR agency has remained very much the same.
A PR agency’s role in reputation management is to protect and enhance its client’s public image. They accomplish this through various activities like monitoring the media for negative stories, conducting damage control in the event of a crisis, and proactively promoting the client’s positive image. While the primary goal of reputation management is to enhance the client’s image, it is also important to remember that the PR agency is also working to protect its reputation. After all, if a client’s reputation is damaged, that will reflect poorly on the agency.
When a company is facing a scandal or other negative publicity, it is vital to have a team of experienced professionals who can help minimize the damage and restore its reputation. Crisis management is often about more than just damage control; it is also about prevention. A good PR agency will work with its clients to help them avoid crises in the first place by developing comprehensive communication plans and preparing for potential problems. And if a crisis does occur, a good PR agency will be ready to spring into action, using all of its resources to protect its client’s interests.
It’s essential to have a strong presence on social media. A PR agency can help create and maintain an effective social media and digital marketing strategy. They can monitor online conversations about your brand and respond to any negative sentiments. A PR agency can help promote your brand on social media, increase your reach, and build relationships with potential customers.
A public relations agency is responsible for generating media coverage that creates a favorable public image for its clients. One of the primary ways they do this is through press releases. A press release is a written statement distributed to the media to generate news coverage. It typically contains information about an event, product launch, or other newsworthy developments. PR agencies work with their clients to develop compelling press releases that capture the attention of reporters and editors. They also have beneficial relationships with journalists and the media, which they can use to pitch story ideas and get their client’s name in the news.
A good media relations strategy will generate positive press coverage to raise awareness, build credibility, and generate leads. A good public relations agency will have industry specialization and should have strong working relationships with key media members. They should be able to identify journalists who cover their clients’ industries and pitch story ideas relevant to their audience.
Speech Writing and Internal Communications
PR agencies also help their clients write speeches and develop internal communications. Compelling speech writing and internal communications should be free of grammar mistakes and balance the art of persuasion and storytelling. This is especially important today, where anything can be “leaked” or shared publicly.
Events can be a valuable component of a marketing and PR plan for some companies. PR agencies typically take on the role of event planner when their client is hosting an event that members of the media will attend. The goal is to ensure that the event runs smoothly and that the client comes across in a positive light. To this end, PR agencies will often coordinate all aspects of event planning, from booking venues and setting up press conferences to arranging travel and lodging for attendees. The PR agency will also use its marketing team to create content through event communications, roundtable discussions, or announcements made for the event.
Market research is a crucial step in any effective PR campaign. By taking the time to understand your target audience, you can develop messaging that resonates with them and reaches them where they are most likely to see it. Additionally, reporters and influencers love to have access to new market research.
Great copywriters can help tell a brand’s story in a way that resonates with your target audience. They will develop a strategy for how to communicate your message and then execute that strategy through various channels. A PR agency will have experienced writers on staff who can craft compelling messages that capture the essence of your brand. They understand how to craft a compelling headline and know how to write persuasive body copy. In addition, a PR agency and its marketing team can help you come up with creative ideas for marketing collateral, such as infographics and white papers.
Public relations agencies develop beneficial relationships with media outlets and influencers and work to get their client’s messages out to the public. They must first identify the target audience and then craft a message that will resonate with that audience. Once the message is prepared, the agency will work to get it in front of as many people as possible through earned media placements, paid advertising, and social media. By getting their message in front of as many people as possible, public relations agencies can help their clients achieve their goals and objectives.
Dealing with the press can be a stressful and challenging experience, even for those experienced in the spotlight. A good PR agency will work with its clients to ensure that they are prepared for any questions that the media might throw their way. This might involve different role-playing scenarios so that the client knows how to respond effectively and positively. In addition, the agency will provide advice on what to say and what not to say to the press to avoid any potential disasters. By ensuring that their clients are media-trained, a PR agency can also help to protect their reputation.
Influencer management is the process of identifying, engaging, and working with individuals who can shape public opinion and drive action. Influencers come in many forms in today’s digital marketing world, from social media personalities and bloggers to thought leaders and industry experts. An effective influencer management strategy can help a brand reach its target audience more efficiently and effectively than traditional advertising methods. It can also create a more lasting relationship between a brand and its customers or followers.
6 Things a PR Agency Can Do For You and Your Business
As a marketer or C-Suite executive, you may be aware of the importance of public relations and its impact on your bottom line. However, you may not have the time or resources to manage a PR campaign on your own. This is where a PR agency can help. Here are some of the things a PR agency can do for you and your business:
1. Build Relationships and Fans for Life
Most people think that a PR agency’s job is to get their name in the news. And while that’s part of it, that’s not all there is to it. A big part of what a PR agency does is build relationships — with the media, influencers, and customers. By developing these relationships, a PR agency can help you get your story out there in a way that resonates with your audience and builds public opinion in your favor. They can also help you connect with the people who matter most to your business.
2. Teach You to Say “This”… Not “That!”
A well-oiled public relations machine can be a powerful weapon in any business’s marketing arsenal. PR agencies help you craft your message and then get it out to the media in the most effective way possible. That might involve developing targeted media lists, writing press releases, or arranging for interviews with key members of your team. But increasingly, it also requires training you and your employees on how to best deliver your message to the media. In an age of social media and 24-hour news cycles, that’s more important than ever. After all, the best PR in the world won’t do you any good if you can’t execute it when the cameras start rolling.
3. Spread Your Genius Around
A typical content marketing strategy used by PR agencies is contributed content. This is when an agency writes and submits an article on your behalf to be published on a reputable third-party site. The article or blog post will include a link back to your website, helping to drive traffic and improve your SEO. In addition, this type of content can also help build your brand awareness and establish you as an expert in your field. If you’re looking for a way to increase your visibility and reach a wider audience, working with a PR agency to create contributed content is a great option.
4. Dominate the Conference World
A PR agency can help your business by organizing and executing successful conferences. A well-planned conference can be a great way to showcase your products or services, connect with potential customers and build credibility with your industry. However, organizing a conference can be a daunting task, and it requires a significant investment of time and resources. A good PR agency will have the experience and expertise necessary to plan and execute a successful conference, helping you to maximize your return on investment.
5. Optimize Your Message
A lot has changed in media relations over the past decade. The internet has had a profound effect on how information spreads, which has created both new opportunities and new challenges for those working in public relations. Today’s PR professionals must be masters of both traditional and digital media to be successful. They must also be skilled at crafting messages that are newsworthy and optimized for search engines.
6. Reach Your Business Dreams
A good PR agency should be able to show you the value of your investment and demonstrate how their work has positively impacted your bottom line. They will need to understand your business goals and objectives clearly to do this. They will also need to track various metrics, such as media coverage, website traffic, and social media engagement. By doing so, they can show you how their efforts have helped you achieve your desired results.
Results Achieved Through A Good PR Strategy
At CSG®, we pride ourselves on achieving excellent results for our clients. The following examples showcase what a good PR strategy and partnership can achieve.
As the largest independent senior living provider in North America, with more than 260 retirement communities and over 30,000 residents throughout the U.S., Holiday Retirement helps older adults and their families with one of the most complex and emotional decisions they will ever make: choosing a senior living community.
Choosing a senior living community to spend the later stages of your life in is a difficult decision. So, CSG needed to fully understand that decision-making process.
CSG developed a customer journey workshop to chart the points of need, key behaviors, potential barriers, and areas of opportunity all along the path from “I need a change” to “I belong at Holiday.”
The resulting content journey was dynamic and designed to authentically educate, comfort, inspire and connect to Holiday Retirement’s core audiences at every critical point in their journey.
We helped Holiday Retirement increase website visits by 877% and increased engaged social media users by 12,213%. Click here to learn more about this work.
Cochlear Americas, the global leader in implantable hearing solutions, has empowered more than 600,000 people of all ages to achieve better hearing outcomes. Before engaging with Communications Strategy Group® (CSG), Cochlear had an active social media presence but lacked a cohesive strategy.
Cochlear’s strong social media presence wasn’t translating into leads.
First, we identified their target audience — current and prospective hearing implant candidates and their families and loved ones. Then, we needed to understand their customers’ journey better and pinpoint critical junctures along the way.
As a result, social engagement skyrocketed, website visits surged, and Cochlear garnered thousands of new leads. There was a 2,500% increase in Facebook- and Twitter-driven leads. Click here to learn more about this work.
Eating Recovery Center provides comprehensive eating disorder treatment for adults, adolescents and children.
Eating Recovery Center needed to raise awareness of its doctors as specialized experts and create a greater understanding of eating disorders and proper treatment among healthcare professionals and reporters.
CSG recognized that designing a separate strategy for each audience would be critical to success. First, we decided to educate healthcare professionals to recognize when they should refer patients to an eating disorder specialist. Next, we aimed to equip journalists with all the information needed to cover eating disorders appropriately.
We called it The Journalist’s Guide to Eating Disorders, and we used it as a launchpad to expand our educational efforts. We also crafted content-driven press releases to encourage our media contacts to tell meaningful stories.
The results helped Eating Recovery Center enhance the spotlight on a critical mental health conversation and raise awareness of the need for consistent practices in eating disorder referral and treatment practices. Click here to learn more about this work.
FAQs About PR Agencies
What is the difference between PR and publicist?
A PR agency is a company that offers public relations services to its clients. A publicist is an individual who works within a PR agency and carries out the tasks associated with public relations campaigns.
How do PR agencies work?
PR agencies work with their clients to develop communication strategies that will help the client achieve their desired objectives.
What are the major roles of PR agencies?
The major roles of PR agencies are to develop and implement public relations campaigns, monitor media coverage, and manage crisis communication.
How do PR agencies make money?
PR agencies make money by charging their clients for the services they provide. Some might charge a yearly fee as an agency of record, a monthly fee as a retainer, or per project. Typically, there’s an agreement and contract signed before work begins between a business and a PR agency.
How much does a PR agency charge?
This answer can differ greatly as PR agencies have a variety of ways they can charge their clients. Often, agencies will develop their fee through estimated hourly pricing that includes every level of employee that could be working for your business. Prices could range from several hundred to tens of thousands of dollars.
Need a firmer answer? According to some of the latest information:
The number of CMOs and CCOs who were managing budgets of more than $100 million reported PR has accounted for 31% of the budget. (blog.hubspot.com)
For those handling a budget between $50 million and $75 million, PR has accounted for 17% of their budget. (blog.hubspot.com)
Let Us Help Your Business
Whether you’re a company of one or hundreds, public relations play a significant role in your business and marketing operations. Sure, you could go it alone, but consider hiring a PR agency to take your business to the next level if you want truly remarkable results.