Selecting a PR agency is easier said than done. There are so many agencies to choose from, and they each have their own unique set of specialties, backgrounds, glittering portfolios, and impressive-looking websites that mean business.
Some of these agencies are enormous, representing companies that hail from a wide range of industries. Then there are smaller niche agencies that choose to remain hyper-focused in certain industries. They each provide traditional media relations services, and some of them might also offer a broader range of digital services, including SEO, social media, and content creation.
All this leaves one big question for tech companies: What type of PR agency would be the best choice?
Traditionally speaking, the best starting point would be to determine the exact goals that need to be achieved from the PR, and what the expectations of the agency would be. The agency would obviously need to play a strong role in developing the PR strategy and tap into their media relations- but at what scale? Would it be local, national, worldwide, or within a certain trade? Are additional digital services needed externally, to supplement the PR efforts? What are the types of campaigns that would need to be conducted? A new product launch? Announcements on company developments? Crisis management?
For tech companies, there is only one choice in terms of the type of agency they must choose, and that is a niche tech PR agency.
Why a tech PR agency is the best fit
One size does not fit all when it comes to technology public relations efforts. That is because the industry has its own set of needs that are best handled by tapping into tacit knowledge. Tech public relations is a different kind of beast, and that is mainly because of the demands of the media, and the personas of the audience that need to be factored.
Generalist PR agencies typically have way too much on their plate, as their staff is overworked from conducting campaigns for clients between a wide range of industries. When they take on clients in tech, a series of meetings would normally need to take place, to educate them on the inner workings of the space. That is not the case when working with a tech PR agency, as they already have experience in the niche, and do not need a great deal of time to pick up on the finer details.
What to be mindful of beforehand
There are plenty of upsides for tech companies that choose to collaborate with a niche PR agency. On the flip side, there are two things tech companies should be mindful of before sealing the deal with them:
- Conflict of interest: One must ensure that the agency is not representing, or in talks with a competitor.
- Ability to differentiate: While the agency would likely have experience in most sectors that branch out of tech, it is important to ensure that they are easily able to differentiate potential clients from other players in the industry.
Once that is established, it is recommended for tech companies to ensure that the working style of the agency is compatible with the style of the company itself, especially with consideration to the stage that the company is in. The best match can only be ensured through a well-structured selection process, which would ultimately yield favorable results.