Now, it might seem logical that if you're looking for top-drawer PR you'd plump for an all singing-all dancing, full service agency, working with the top names. Makes sense, right? But, do you need all singing-all dancing? More to the point, is your budget up to it? If your answer to these is 'Yes' then maybe you don't need to read any further, but then again maybe you should....
More often than not, your independent PR practitioner has honed their skillset and experience at said top-notch agency and taken the leap to "do it their way" because of personal circumstances or to make a proactive lifestyle choice. Just because they're flying solo it doesn't mean that they can't add value to your business with the same creativity and professionalism. What's more, with minimal overheads - the majority work from home - they can certainly offer more bang for your buck.
Then, consider this: independents are dynamic individuals who are super-motivated to succeed. They absolutely have to be. Firstly, they're a business leader committed to succeeding. Like a leader, they are accountable: for every piece of advice they give, every release they issue and ultimately for ensuring they are delivering results that meet the client's objectives. When you choose an independent practitioner you're definitely getting 'what you see on the label' and there is nowhere to hide.
By opting for a freelancer, you can find someone who really matches your needs. There will be a freelancer with the sector specialisms and specific skillset that is the perfect fit for your business. But, hang on, what if there is something they don't have experience of? If there is one thing Indie PRs are good at it's networking - they'll know someone who can.
Still not convinced? Perhaps you're thinking "yep, but they can't possibly be up to speed with the latest knowledge and skills because they don't have access to the agency talent pool?" I'd argue: yes, actually (of course, I would!). Indies have to be even more committed to training and personal development to ensure they are relevant. With industry organisations such as the CIPR and PRCA, there are plenty of ways to plug into a continuous personal development programme. What's more, the CIPR have just announced the launch of an independent practitioners group, so the good news is we now have a dedicated support network. Add to this online marketplace platforms such as The PR Cavalry and The Work Crowd, which are akin to dating apps for clients and PRs, and you could go as far to say that 2019 will be "the Year of the Indie PR".
So what are you waiting for, go find yourself an all singing-all dancing, #trending indie PR!
#indiePR #CIPRindie #entrepreneur #publicrelations
Clare Pope, always has her head in a book - current read Gathering Storm by Rachel Hore