From The Blog

What You Need to Know When Hiring a PR Agency

At Beast video production UK

we have noticed that lots of clients are asking their PR agencies for video. And as a production company UK we are always keen to make new connections and start new relationships.

Working with PR agencies is great for a creative video production company like Beast because we get to help with the creative development, which is something we always love to do. It always makes sense to share ideas early so that whatever the campaign is, it will fit with the budget that the client has awarded.

That’s why at Beast video production UK when brands come direct to us we always try to understand how we can best help them. We are a video production company after all. We cannot offer all of the services that you would get from a creative agency or PR agency in terms of on going support. So whilst we can help with one off campaigns or small on going content campaigns. It’s always important for a brand to know at what stage their business is at and what service and which service provider best suits their needs.

Should I be hiring a PR agency? Do I need a PR agency? What does a PR agency do? These are all great questions when you are thinking about hiring a PR agency. When I think of PR, the first thing that springs to mind is Jennifer Saunders’s character “Eddie” in Absolutely Fabulous. Dramatically flitting about from one party to the next, never really achieving anything and making a fool of herself on a regular basis, accompanied by a drugged and drunk friend (cue Patsy). So, let’s get started shall we sweetie? Darling?

What does a PR agency do?

Saffie: I’m sorry, mum, but I’ve never seen what it is that you actually do.

Eddie: PR.

Saffie: Yes, but…

Eddie: PR. I PR things. People. Places. Concepts…

People hire PR agencies if they want to protect, enhance or build reputation through the media. A good PR agency will want to know whether you want to change people’s perceptions about your company, whether you want to tell potential customers about new products or demonstrate that you are worth your salt. In its simplest form, PR is about building rapport with those who are important. That is also true of the relation ship between the PR company and it’s suppliers. At Beast video production UK we know the importance of an ongoing relationship and that a meaningful relationship is built upon trust. Trust can only be earned by providing consistently excellent work on budget, on brief and on time.

They will want to develop a plan with you, and from this, they will start using their PR wizardry to get the ball rolling. Media is the big one and your agency would work with you to create content that sends out the right message. Be that blog posts, a brand story video or working with you on your video production. And like it or not, no matter how great our video production company UK  is, and how amazing our digital content is, your PR agency will still be telling you to engage with your audience face to face. If you are more in the vein of website video production, this might not be your comfort zone, but that’s why you have an agency to help you.

How do I know if I need a PR agency?

Answer these questions. If you say yes to most of them, then it might be time for you to engage with a PR agency.

Do you have proof that you are better than your competition?

Do you have proof that you are different from your competition?

Do you know who you are trying to engage with?

Do you have the money to hire a PR agency?

Do you have the time to work with a PR agency?

Can you offer up spokespeople that can talk to the media?

Can you see how a PR agency would benefit you?

How do I choose my agency?

                  Eddie: [shouting] I DON’T WANT MORE CHOICE, I JUST WANT NICER THINGS!!

You want to find a PR agency that suits you. You need them to “get” your company, your product and your concept. If they don’t believe in your success, then they aren’t going to engage with the media successfully for you. If you were hiring a wedding planner, would you hire the first person you saw to do the job? I don’t think so. So, don’t hire the first PR agency you speak with. Talk to a few, meet with them and get a feel for the agency that is going to best represent you.

Think about the kind of business you are. Are you a tech start-up? Are you fully fledged business in your area but need more attention paid to your digital content? Are you a company with good market share and online presence and need support with keeping this going? Whichever category you fall into, make sure you are selecting a PR agency with experience in this area. The cheapest option might not always be the best option in this case. You might have to pay a bit more for the kind of experience you are looking for.

How to measure the success of my PR agency

                  Eddie: What do you think of the kitchen, Pats?

                  Patsy: I think it’s fabulous.

                  Saffie: It isn’t done yet.

                  Eddie: No, sweetie. Maybe she’s right. Maybe this IS fabulous.

You need to know whether the money you are spending on your PR agency is worthwhile, and whether all the work you are putting in is making a difference. You need to be sure that you are getting what you want out of the process. You need to talk about success and how success looks to you. At what point will you feel like it’s been a successful campaign? Remember, not everyone manages to make it to front page news. But, that doesn’t mean what you have done hasn’t been a success. Together, come up with some goals which will help you determine how well you are doing, and, remember, goals are moveable. It could be a certain number of views on your latest video content, or a certain number of likes and shares on your digital content.

Am I getting the most out of my agency?

                  Eddie: They don’t matter, do they, darling?… Awards, Pats?

                  Patsy: Oh, Eddie. We’ve been here before.

                  Eddie: It’s just… you know… I WANT one. I don’t just want one, darling, I NEED one. My

career is on a toboggan run of failure at the moment… I just need one.

A PR pro should know what your company needs and have a plan for how they are going to get you there. You shouldn’t be waiting around for your PR agency to come up with ideas and you shouldn’t have to push them to make contact with you all the time. A good PR agency will be coming up with ideas left, right and centre and should be in contact with you on a regular basis. They should be proactive. If you feel you aren’t getting the most from your current PR agency, perhaps it is time for a shakeup?

But, it’s also not a one way street. You need to be letting your public relations agency know what you want, when you want it and where you want to see it. It’s much easier for a PR agency to increase your visibility online, if they know whereabouts you want to be seen. If you want to be featured on blogs, sites or Instagram accounts, then you need to tell them.