The 7 PR agency commandments

There’s more to PR than pitching. Observe these basic rules to avoid some fundamental sins.

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Yes, spamming pitches is a bad idea, but within a PR agency, there are other, more grievous sins. Here’s my list of bigger-picture PR “commandments.”

1. You will not overpromise.
Overpromising, particularly when it comes to publicity results, reinforces unrealistic expectations, which is probably the single biggest reason why relationships fail. It’s an easy mistake, because even the most experienced PR professional cannot predict results with full accuracy. The most bedeviling error, however, is failure to even discuss client expectations, and the agency’s own requirements from the client.

2. You will know your client’s business. One of the most helpful things for me and my most successful colleagues has been a knowledge of their client’s business. Sometimes this is based on relevant experience, but at the start, it should be driven by innate curiosity. If you don’t have a genuine interest and desire to know the business, the category, and all the ups and downs involved in the business, you are guilty of a sin of omission and probably should not be working with the client.

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