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  • Writer's pictureJuliet Fallowfield

I can’t afford a PR agency: what should I do?

PR agencies can yield good results and certainly have their place when they are properly budgeted for and briefed well. However, their services can come at a significant fee which may be unaffordable for earlier-stage independent businesses. 

Don’t be disheartened if you can’t afford a PR agency as there is an alternative that we think is better: owning your PR in-house for the long term. We feel this is the best approach to PR because you are your business’ own best storyteller given you know your business inside out. 

By owning your PR in-house, you’ll also develop your own press network which remains with your business and doesn’t disappear when you terminate a PR agency contract. 

Click here to find out more about why owning your PR in-house is a great option. 

Click here to learn more about what PR is and isn’t. 

We’ve also included some considerations below to help guide you through deciding if PR is right for your business and whether you can internalise it. 

Think about what PR will bring back to your business 

What does success look like to you if you were to begin PR outreach to journalists? Perhaps you’re looking for greater brand awareness or to further engage your audience? Before beginning any PR outreach, take the time to define what success looks like for your business as this will help guide you in developing the most effective PR plan to achieve your objectives. 

If you can see the value of PR for your business, think about how much time you can dedicate to it

To understand what time you can dedicate to PR, we recommend tracking your time throughout the week. This will help you identify how much time you can carve out of your schedule specifically for PR. At FF&M, we use Toggl to see where we’re spending our time during the week. Once you’ve decided how much time you can put into PR, it’s much easier to draw up your PR plan with actionable and realistic targets. Please note, it doesn’t have to be a huge amount of time to still be effective.

Think about your competitors and what PR results they’re achieving

What PR results are your competitors achieving that you’d also like to secure for your business? We recommend scrapbooking coverage that your competitors are achieving so that you can pitch for your business to be included in similar articles. Also, follow relevant journalists on social media platforms to understand the types of content they’re publishing and how you can make your business relevant to their audiences. 

Once you’ve worked through each of these, email and we can explain how owning your PR works.

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