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Why small businesses struggle with PR firms

By Jason Mudd

This is one story about PR and small businesses. Read How small companies do PR and what big companies can learn from them for more.


Small businesses can have problems with PR firms.

Our public relations agency specializes in helping regional and national companies with news, social, and web services to build awareness, consideration, and sales for their companies' experts, products, and services. This includes a special focus on construction, professional services, and consumer services companies as well as franchisors. 


Recently, an entrepreneur approached our firm to inquire about PR services for his small business. He was your stereotypical Type A personality and assumed it would be our absolute honor to work with him, although we have the pleasure of working with billion-dollar brands


As a fellow small-business owner, I was trying my very best to be helpful and offer some initial recommendations. Instead, he insisted that his "affordable" marketing, while underperforming, was good because it was cheap. He demanded from our firm what we consider to be unrealistic pricing and contingencies. Related: PR firms should avoid startups.


It was marketing pioneer John Wanamaker who said, “Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don't know which half.”


And it's this quote by Morris Hite that I love: "There is more money wasted in advertising by underspending than by overspending. Years ago, someone said that underspending in advertising is like buying a ticket halfway to Europe. You’ve spent your money, but you never get there.”


In my experience advising brands for more than 25 years, thinking small is the biggest reason small businesses never get big. These entrepreneurs and founding CEOs are often worried about protecting a small slice instead of preparing to enjoy the entire pie. And with all due respect to them, that's why we typically prefer working with larger and more established companies who don't fool around with small-time thinking and criteria.


See what small businesses spend on PR.


Using a PR firm can help you convert leads, drive traffic, and keep your brand out front. To learn more about what Axia can do for your company, contact us or download our complimentary e-book, “Maximizing Your Public Relations Investment” today.


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Clients love Jason’s passion, candor, and commitment as well as the team he has formed at Axia Public Relations. He’s advised some of America’s most admired brands, including American Airlines, Dave & Buster’s, Hilton, HP, Pizza Hut, and Verizon. He is an Emmy Award-winning, accredited public relations practitioner, speaker, author, and entrepreneur and earned his certification in inbound marketing. He founded the PR firm in July 2002.

Topics: public relations

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