You should do really, as you are paying that company or consultant to represent your business - so it follows that they should be as passionate about it as you are.
Just in time for Valentine's Day, we share our top tips for ensuring the chemistry with your PR agency is exactly as it should be. And if it's not - we offer advice on what you can do to remedy this, and how to recognise when it's time to move on to pastures new...
1. Question: Does your PR consultant/team really 'get' your firm and what you are trying to achieve? It goes without saying that the content they produce is legally correct*, but does the tone of the copy reflect how you would describe the business? If you can't hand-on-heart say that the messages your PR is putting out there reflect exactly how you want your firm to be represented, then it's time to consider taking one or more of the following steps...
2. Talk: If your representative is labouring under the false belief that everything is hunky-dory, then it's your responsibility to arrange a review to discuss where improvements can be made. Don't put this off - as with any relationship, talking helps to disperse resentment and prevent the rot from setting in. Don't allow niggles to become terminal.
3. Mapping: As part of the above, consider asking your PR to undertake a mapping process. This is should be something they do on an annual (at least) basis anyway. Done well, brand mapping draws out key messages, business objectives and targets and at the very least - should facilitate a discussion about what has and hasn't worked and what to aim for in the future.
4. Focus: Understand your representative's strengths and ensure that these continue to align with your firm's needs. If your focus is on media relations, but you have selected an integrated consultancy that prides itself on excellent social media strategies and delivery - it may be time to rethink where you spend your budget.
5. Review: Just stopping to take the time to think about where improvements can be made to an existing relationship can prove to be both insightful and empowering. Strong observations can be made simply by reviewing what your PR set out to do, against what is being delivered, and these may be very powerful in helping you to decide upon the best course of action when looking to the future.
*And if it's not - time to get the experts in. We're the experts, obviously.
By Victoria Moffatt
LexRex is a specialist consultancy providing strategic PR and marketing support to law firms and businesses that operate within the legal sector. Our services include media relations, social media support and training, award entries, legal directory submissions and online/offline copywriting.
If you would like to know more about our services, please drop us an email on firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also tweet us LexRexComms or @vicmoffatt.