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5 ways to manage your expectations for PR results

By Marjorie Comer

Don’t get frustrated when results don’t come quickly.

Control your expections for your PR campaign.

After much research and vetting, your company hired a public relations firm with the hope of gaining media hits and results. It’s been a month and you haven’t seen any results. You feel frustrated and ready to throw in the towel. It’s important to remember that a PR firm can’t guarantee results or say when you should expect results. In fact, becoming frustrated when the results don’t happen quickly is mistake #10 on Axia Public Relations’ list of 15 mistakes companies make when hiring a PR firm.

Here are five things you should keep in mind to manage your expectations when working with a PR firm:

1. Knowledge

Generally, a PR firm will use the first 30 days of a public relations campaign to get to know the client. During this time, we set up media monitoring searches, create a PR plan, cultivate our media lists, and begin media outreach on your behalf. The best way for your PR firm to share your company’s story is to get to know your spokespeople and your company.

2. Timing

PR firms understand that with media pitching, timing is everything. For example, pitching a TV producer during sweeps – a time period when the Nielsen team asks consumers to make note of everything they watch – is most likely not going to lead to a story because each station is busy trying to entice consumers to watch their content during that time. In addition, while online coverage and results are prominent in today’s world, the ideal timing of a piece and even a pitch can change. Breaking news  especially national news  trumps almost all other content. This means that the media outlet may hold a story about your company for another day or longer in the wake of terrorist attack or other national news.

3. Publication

Pitching a print magazine and seeing your article published is exciting. It’s important to remember that many magazines work a minimum of three to four months (and even more) ahead of their print schedule. Some magazine offices enjoy listening to holiday music in July and August as they prep for their December issues.

4. Relevance

Sometimes the news that you want to share isn’t relevant for an outlet’s audience. Perhaps it makes more sense as a social media post or a blog post. Your PR firm is here to help you determine what’s relevant to your target audience. Sometimes a moving human-interest story has more relevance to reporters and readers than company announcements and news.

5. Results

Don’t rush the results just to have results – quality is far better than quantity. Your customers will notice the quality of your content. One strategically placed clip, which can take months of pitching and follow-up, amounts to higher visibility than other, smaller hits.

Axia Public Relations knows that public relations is about integrity, ideas, relationships, and results. In fact, these are our firm’s core values. Each of these values builds upon the other; you can’t get the results without the ideas and the relationships. Remember, your PR firm should do everything with integrity.

Still wondering about why results don’t happen quickly? Read Learn Media Relations from the Media to better understand what journalists are looking for in their stories.

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marjorie-comer-axia-pr.jpgClients love Marjorie’s work ethic, speed and diligence. She has worked with Axia Public Relations since October 2011. Marjorie graduated from Rockhurst University with a Bachelor of Arts in communication and loves to cheer for her hometown Kansas City Royals. Learn more about Marjorie.


Featured image credit: 123rf.com 

Topics: public relations, PR tips, earned media

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