Providing Value as a PR Pro
[By Jason Mollica]
Whether you are in public relations, marketing, advertising, or social media management (and even if you do all of those), it is important to understand just how valuable you are to your clients. Think about this for a moment. What do you think takes more time? Working to get a new client or fostering growth with a current one. It can be a tough question, however both take effort.
When you put forth a proposal for a potential new client, you are attempting to show value. When you develop a new marketing plan for a present client, you are showing your continued value. But, providing value shouldn’t be a fleeting thing. It’s something we as pros need to continue to do. No questions asked.
My public relations career started after I left the world of television and radio. I understood, though, that value in the media is really the same as a PR pro. Giving your clients (or audience) valuable insight and information can go a very long way to earning more trust and business.
How can we continue to provide value now and in the future? Here’s a few ways:
Be in contact with your clients: We are all communicators. If we aren’t talking with our clients, how can we truly understand their needs? Schedule calls to share updates on progress and how happy they are (hopefully) with the services you provide.
Be a leader: If people see you and/or your business as a leader, they are much more likely to stay with you. They’ll have your confidence because the consensus confirms that they already have one of the best.
Act decisively: You were hired for your expertise; don’t waver when it comes to what is best for your client. Confidence should come across in your communications. Anticipate what questions your client may have and do the required research.
Value your client’s opinion: Clients are as much experts in their fields as you are in yours. Listen to their input because they have most likely worked with their own customers longer than you’ve been working with them. You also need to value what the customer says on social networks. Listening is an incredible valuable trait.
Be open and transparent: Be clear on what you expect, how you work, and what your client can expect. There should not be any “oh, I forgot” and “I thought you would have known.” Client loyalty can increase based on how mistakes are handled. Studies have shown that clients that are unhappy can be turned into champions if the mistake has been fixed, exceeding their expectations.
The bottom line with providing value is that it should not be something that is hard to do. We go into our work everyday with the attitude that we can make a difference. That difference is value to clients, new and old, and the greater audience. Show your value with pride and gain a hold of your business!