If you're asking yourself this question, then you're not alone. High quality PR support can be expensive and you won't reap the full rewards of your investment right away. Perhaps you used a PR consultancy for a one-off project and the results didn't blow you away? Or perhaps you paid for external PR for a year and then dropped the idea because you didn't see the successes you hoped for? Here at Comms promise, we come across this issue in the market surprisingly often and here are our top reasons why we think it is worth going on retainer:
When you begin working with an external PR adviser, you will see some immediate or short-term successes - quotes in articles, interviews, article commissions, media meet-and-greets and so on.
However, the elephant in the room is that:
Raising your firm's profile is a cumulative exercise! The longer you keep at it, the greater the results you achieve. This is the big secret to really good PR that many firms don't seem to plan for.
It takes time to reap the full rewards of your efforts. Initially, your PR provider will introduce your firm to key media targets and legal directories. They will research your hot topics and use your intellectual capital to reach out to journalists. But if they continue this work, over time, your firm will become known as 'media friendly' and responsive as well as being experts in key areas and journalists will come to you!
PR is never harder than in your first year of a profile-raising push. If you persevere, it gets easier and easier.
There is nothing more frustrating as a PR consultancy than achieving great results for a client for a limited period and then not being able to capitalise on that success to reach even higher heights.
When planning for a profile-raising push, we advise thinking in terms of a year for the 'building' phase, a year for 'consolidating' and thereafter, you should be operating at 'peak PR'.