There came a time when I knew I no longer wanted to work in TV news. I lost my appetite for it. As I was trying to figure out what the future might hold, one thing I knew for sure, I did not want to work for a PR agency. I felt that agency life equated to representing any business that called or walked through the door, was all about spin, glamour and media relations. This week, as I enter my fifth year of being an integral part of an agency team, admittedly, I was wrong.
There were a few important lessons I learned before I even began at Baker Public Relations. While speaking with team members and exploring what opportunities might exist, they helped to clear up my misconceptions and allowed me to take a second look at what a career in PR would be like.
Public Relations is a two-way street. Baker Public Relations does not sign on to work with every client that calls or walks through our doors. We don’t answer every request for proposal (RFP), or many for that matter. We prioritize quality clients over quantity. If we do not believe in a company or organization’s brand or mission or cannot authentically tell a story, we won’t try to, and we certainly will not waste your time or ours. Our team has spent all 15 years of this agency’s history building relationships with journalists, media partners, and community leaders. We simply will not put our stamp on something we do not personally believe in.
Another surprise that took a little longer to set in was how emotionally invested we become in our clients. Yes, there is massive excitement when we land a significant media hit, or see a big jump in social metrics, a policy change, or another PR related victory, but it goes beyond that. Our clients lean on us for creativity, collaboration, transparency, strategy and PR counsel; simply because we genuinely care about their success no matter how big or small the organization.
The last point I want to make is about budgets. There is a definite misunderstanding about how much it “costs” to hire a PR agency. We pride ourselves on working with diverse businesses and we create each campaign and budget to meet your overall goals and objectives. Some organizations require a bigger budget depending on the scope of work and end goal. The bottom line is public relations is an investment of your time, money and team. It takes a commitment and a collaborative effort on behalf of all parties.
While I have no regrets in my past career, I certainly have embraced all that working for a PR agency has afforded me and then some. I get to tell more amazing stories on behalf of our clients through video, I have a supportive team of PR and marketing professionals around me and most of all, I’m now leading a creative services department creating work that I enjoy and feel good about. I am fortunate I opened my eyes to agency life and public relations. It’s more than I ever expected.