8 ways to select the perfect PR agency

How can you tell whether a firm is the right fit for your organization? Consider these essentials for a great working relationship.

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Your business is changing.

You might be on the verge of a brand launch or introducing a product line, or perhaps you’ve received major funding and it’s time to hit the accelerator. The time has come to hire a new PR agency; with so much at stake, you’ve got to get this right.

Hiring a new agency is both exciting and daunting: It’s a big opportunity with lots at stake, yet you have to squeeze it in while doing your primary job.

You want to hire an agency that will grow with you into the future, but that’s becoming increasingly difficult. According to the Bedford Group, the average client-agency relationship tenure in 1984 was 7.2 years. That number declined by 25 percent in 1997 to 5.3 years, and today the average tenure is 3.0 years or less. What’s going on?

Clients often hire agencies that can’t meet their ongoing needs. Here are the top criteria you should consider (some seemingly counterintuitive) to help you find the best long-term PR agency partner:

1. Do the agency staffers get you?

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