Public relations can make a significant impact on your business. PR supports in good or bad times. Consistent, positive media attention through PR has the power to build credibility, increase sales, improve brand reputation, and take care of your marketing efforts, leaving you free to focus on other parts of the business. But not all PR agencies are equally hardworking, you have to check their effectiveness and other points when you need to fire your PR agency.
When PR isn’t your area of expertise, how do you know if your PR manager or agency is performing well? How to check their efficiency? When is it time to stop collaborating with them? In this article, we’ll go through the reasons to fire a PR manager and ways to receive the same results with a smaller budget. Let’s start.
18 Reasons to Fire Your PR Agency
They don’t deliver results in line with your business objectives
In a world where PR budgets have tightened considerably and more businesses are questioning public relations, only the results will prove the industry’s worth. But not just any results. They need to be in line with the client’s business objectives and not the results comfortable for the PR agency (number of publications, reach). An agency might have a very different idea of what success looks like. That idea might include great messaging, a cool new brand, impressions, or a new fancy website.
Set up the goals that will improve your business and strengthen your image with countable targets and KPIs.
There is no return on investment for their work
When there is no ROI, there is no reason to continue activities. In a world where trackable marketing investments come in free and live reports, it might seem normal for a brand to ask about the true performance of an article published in a famous press outlet. Even such general goals as strengthening reputation can be measured. It´s mandatory to calculate ROI for the PR efforts. Find out how we, here at PRNews.io, are measuring PR success.
If they don’t create new pretexts, they wait
Your agency should be creating a consistent flow of fresh new ideas. They consistently should come up with new angles of information presentation in key outlets. They will cleverly input you into trending conversations within media and influencers. They should make your brand a fixture in relevant business conversations with minimal lift on your part. The best PR teams will find how and build new relationships with influencers, analysts, and publishers – on your behalf.
A good technology PR team will respond shortly to any emails or calls. They should be passionate and well-prepared for a regular check-in phone call at least once a week. These are communications professionals. They should initiate communication. You shouldn’t wait and feel like one of many in a long roster of clients. If your PR agency is ghosting you, it’s time to make them disappear.
Your competition gets all the headlines
It’s okay if you don’t appear in every headline out there. Sometimes, one of your competitors will steal the primetime. But if you don’t seem to be getting any substantial media coverage for a long time and your competitors are, then it’s probably time to fire your PR agency. The opportunities to tell your story are always out there; you just have to find the right solution that will seize those opportunities.
If you’re paying thousands of dollars each month to a PR agency, you don’t expect excuses, you need results. You didn’t hire a PR agency just to get one reason after another about why you didn’t get that headline or why your company is constantly getting outranked by influencers. So if your PR manager can’t show you actual results based on solid PR measurement, it’s probably time to fire him or the PR firm.
The tone and style of the content aren’t appropriate for your brand
One of the biggest disappointments we see businesses that work with outside marketing PR companies struggle with is that the content being created doesn’t sound like a brand. We see a lot of businesses experience this when hiring PR freelancers too. It’s tough to get an agency or outside party to capture who you are as a business if they don’t focus solely on you — and with other clients to juggle, they will never be able to.
No one at your business is excited about the agency’s work
This is a major indication the marketing strategy is falling flat and doesn’t have the command it needs to create real change. An efficient marketing agency will not only have an exciting strategy for your business but will be the results generator to motivate your team as well.
Lack of enthusiasm
Ineffective PR agencies lack enthusiasm for their work, and they often lack a sense of humor as well. Working in any department should inspire, but some PR experts don’t take advantage of it. This usually leads to no results.
Poor writing skills
Bad writing is not OK. A PR agency must have a good writer under its roof and call to consistently communicate on your company’s behalf in a brand-appropriate voice. The art of writing is crucial in communication and conveying a message to the target audience. Without it, posts will not have the desired effect.
Inability to handle difficult situations
In case something unfortunate happens internally or externally to the company, a professional PR agency has to be able to represent and react appropriately, and handle the situation honestly and correctly. Suppose the agency deals poorly with the press or sends out releases that make untrue statements, trying to deny blame or going against the values of a company. In that case, they are putting the company in a worse position and don’t help.
No analytical success-metrics strategy
A good PR agency will not have a strategy that finishes when your article gets published and you are mentioned a few times in the press. A worthwhile agency will have comprehensive reporting tools and strategy in place to measure the impact of the press in terms of traffic to your website, inbound sales leads, thought leadership, audience engagement, etc. If you’re not getting any of these metrics, it’s time to look for a different agency.
Your marketing company doesn’t hold off on your bad ideas
Staying on the theme of trust, if you don’t trust your marketing agency to point out your bad ideas and all you are working with is a “yes” man, stop working with a such PR agency. While you know your product or service, you might not know some of the tricks in marketing. Unlike you, PR agencies have done this a time or two and have seen what works.
Be honest about ideas — and most importantly, be open to new or old ones.
What makes collaboration with a PR agency work is no different from what makes any great partnership work: The mutual understanding has to be there, they have to really “get” what you want, and just because they’re able to prove past success doesn’t mean they will necessarily help you, and of course, it’d fit your budget. If you see their work and the obtained results exceed the ROI, then you have chosen the right agency. But more often than not, PR agencies have hidden costs for which you do not need to overpay:
Involving inexperienced stuff
An agency has sold itself to a client (through the name of its owner, or a tender), and the project was handed over to a journalism student with little PR experience.
Blurry price for services
The representative of the PR agency doesn’t share with you the exact price of the service and tries to find out the size of your budget. It is much easier to add additional value to the price of publications, writing press releases, and so on under the total cost.
Read more: The Hidden Costs of Hiring a PR Agency
Distributing the content
The next level of overpayment for PR services is the usage of Press Release distribution agencies. They are taking away a fee for writing and sending your articles and press releases to a list of journalists. Fees can cost differently and here is where you overpay again.
Content Marketing Platform
- 100,000+ media publications;
- get backlinks to your product;
- scale work with content distribution.
Many PR agencies offer various services, like project management, strategic planning, and execution. It will provide employees like an account director, account manager, account planner, project manager, creative director, art director, copywriter, and copy editor. Each requires a salary of a different size and the time spent on your work or campaign will be calculated and can be paid partially by you. The client will pay those expenses plus a multiple added on to cover a roughly 20% profit margin and overheads.
Who will replace the PR manager?
The next step after firing your public relations agency is to find how to boost the image of your company, promote new offers or send another message to your target audience.
So if you manage your company’s budget wisely, you should try PRNews.io. The PRNews.io will create a press release for you and gets it published on the media outlets you choose.
All costs are transparent:
- prices for each publication are agreed upon in advance;
- the deadlines for the release of materials are also clear and precise (unlike the work of agents);
- you can carefully plan your budget and the number of media outlets;
- you can roughly predict the traffic you will receive because we provide statistics for each media.
In addition, you can complete your ad planning by choosing the best mix of online media sources for publishing your content. Media Discovery service from PRNews.io takes on all the complexity of choosing the right media. Its media team will take away the most appropriate media platforms for you to save you from wasted marketing spending on publications that your prospects don’t read.
Although it seems to be attractive to hire a marketing agency to create for you your strategy and messaging, you will never get the results you’re looking for unless you bring the most important pieces in-house. Things like marketing strategy, content creation, and data analytics are all parts of the marketing process you have to participate in partially. But some solutions can make it much easier and more effective than an expensive PR agency.
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