Why do I need public relations?

A good PR firm becomes a part of your marketing strategy, not just a hired resource . Public relations supports your advertising and marketing by securing editorial coverage. It jumpstarts the image-building process, provides positioning, creates marketplace familiarity, and carries with it an implied endorsement. In short, a strong public relations campaign helps stretch your advertising dollar and supports your advertising message.

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How do I find a public relations company that is right for me?

Check the fit. What is their niche? If you’re a winemaker or a fashion designer, don’t choose a firm that specializes in real estate development projects. Check references. What do other clients say about them? Do they have long-term relationships? Repeat business? This indicates a company that fulfills its promises. Check the food chain. Are you a big enough fish to deal with senior account executives, or will your account be turned over to relatively junior staff members? Ask who your account team will be? Check with the media. Ask to speak with one of the agency’s contacts at a magazine, television station or newspaper. You’ll get excellent and honest feedback on the quality of work that agency produces.

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Aside from the monthly retainer fee, how much should I plan to spend?

Start- up costs will involve printing (press kit cover, letterhead for press releases and other written material). You’ll be expected to pay for postage and shipping costs, as well as long-distance calls and faxes to the media. At KMA, we always introduce our clients, one-on-one, to key editors. That means at least one trip to New York per year. Media training helps you communicate your message effectively and we generally recommend it for our clients. While monthly retainers vary in cost, you can expect the following services to be included in the monthly retainer fee:

  •  Research and evaluation of client market and market trends
  •  Up to date media contacts
  •  Creative development of all relevant public relations programs
  •  Supervision of all design elements of client press kit
  •  Developing, writing and distributing press kits, articles, brochures, news releases, video news release scripts, and other press materials
  • Regular internal brainstorm sessions to review the account
  • Regular client-agency meetings, where the client receives written reports as follow-up, advising the client of current and future activities
  • Well documented monthly activity and results reports

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Should I ask for a proposal and what should it tell me?

In a proposal, we express our capabilities, our creative thinking and -- given our preliminary research, knowledge and level of understanding of a prospective client's needs -- the direction we see the public relations campaign going. Once you have retained our agency, we will provide you with a written calendar that outlines exactly what we are doing on your behalf. This calendar not only outlines our daily work for you, it provides a yardstick by which you can later measure our results.

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