PR As A One Night Stand Or As A Power Couple?

PR As A One Night Stand Or As A Power Couple?

In this guest post, Kathryn Van Kuyk and Anthony Caruana (lead image), co-CEOs and co-founders, Media-Wize, compare PR to modern dating! Either way, we hope you find some PR love… 

In life, you get out what you put in. Public relation  engagements are no different. Like modern dating, there are a variety of ways businesses commonly engage with PR experts. What does it take to move from a quick swipe to the right to a walk down the aisle? 

The one-night-stand approach to PR.

Successful PR is a relationship and not a one-night-stand. Potentially exciting with a rush of energy and enthusiasm, one-night-stand (ONS) PR might get your business a quick short term hit. But like a quick swipe to the right, ONS PR gives the PR a superficial assessment and jumps straight into it without really knowing who they’re engaging with. The PR doesn’t get much of a chance to learn about your business beyond a high surface level and hasn’t got time to do any analysis on how to differentiate and make you stand out from competitors. This isn’t a strategic approach – it’s a ‘wham bam thank you man/mam’ press release that’s delivered with a pray and spray email blast. Hopefully it works out and you won’t wake up after the quick hookup and want to gnaw off your arm. 

We’re friends, don’t label us.  

Instead of ONS PR, you might go for a ‘friends with benefits’ arrangement. You meet up casually, the client gets the occasional press release sent out and the PR gets paid but it’s purely transactional and there’s no real commitment. FWB PR is a little better but your PR doesn’t get the chance to invest time getting to know your business or your senior leadership team’s opinions. Maybe you’ll get lucky and get a couple pieces of coverage and then, when everything seems fine, something happens. The communication flow slows down and the PR ends up being ghosted. It might be because of bill shock or a disappointing result – it can happen to anyone. That’s the way of an FWB relationship. 

Let’s keep it casual, drama free baby!

Now we’ve progressed through the ONS and FWB stage, the engagement has hit casual status. There isn’t a contract and terms, it is very much pick up the phone and see if you’re up for another rodeo cos we think we have a story, we’re launching a new exciting amazing, biggest, best product, wanna push it out for us, kinda thing. The client is saying to the PR, “I really like you but I want to keep my options open” but there’s no real commitment. Wanna sign a 12 month contract and bring some rigour to this, develop a plan and get more strategic? Nope, don’t stress me out, don’t bring the drama. 

I do in fact really like you, let’s have a relationship! 

It has been a bumpy roller coaster journey of highs and lows, but we have reached a point where we like each other and there is mutual respect, open communication and knowledge flowing. We make the decision to take this to the next level to elevate awareness and actively work together to establish trust and credibility in the market. This is when the magic starts to happen. Coverage is not just flowing. It is high quality and drives an uptick in engagement. Doors are opening more easily for the business. Your investment and hard work together is reaping rewards. 

Will you marry me? But first, let’s get a prenup. 

The relationship is going so well, you want to formalise this working relationship and make sure the IP you’ve invested and knowledge your PR has built up about your business, isn’t easily lost to a competitor’s advantage. It is time to plan the wedding and ramp up to being a real power couple. The type of results at this point may if you’re lucky hit an award winning level. You’re both committed, engaged and have formed a working relationship that has achieved power couple status. Your competitors are watching, they are seeing where and how you’re getting these incredible media hits. They see the creative tactical ideas and are envious. So you sign NDAs and a contract for 12 months or more. An agreed contract is important to set out the terms of the agreement and the clauses if one party suddenly decides a divorce is ever in order…

PR is not a short-term game. The best results happen when you partner for the long term. PR miracles don’t happen overnight but if you are consistent and persistent overtime you can really create something valuable that elevates your company and brand. Finding the right PR to suit your business is key. When you find that special someone, treat them with respect and commit so you can both reap the reward on investment.




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