There are No PR Pros at the End of the Rainbow

Monday, May 15, 2006 | comments

I wish I had a nickel for every time a client or prospect told us: "If you do our PR for cheap, we'll increase the budget as-soon-as we get acquired or get the VC $$$."

Almost. Never. Happens.

Correction: Never Happens.

"YOU will get rich when the acquisition/funding comes through," I say. "And that's great; we're happy to help make that happen...
  • "But, WE don't make money when the 'lucky strike' happens...
  • What guarantees can you possibly make to us about this event?
    • "What if the CEO/VC decides to NOT increase the PR budget when the warchest fills-up?
    • "What if an acquirer decides to suspend all vendor contracts? - will you go to bat for us?
    • "When you hired us you suggested that you wanted to be primed for an acquisition/VC infusion - so, why should we expect a big retainer increase once that motivation is gone?"
Have you ever seen the polite grimace on a PR pro's face, as they listen to the delighted tale of their client's new-found riches? Have you ever seen a PR pro's jaws clench, as the client goes on to suggest that maybe, just maybe, "the great PR helped increase the valuation"?

Don't succumb to the client's pitch. PR agencies work very, very hard to promote their clients' successes, with no expectations of life-changing wealth as a result. Get paid for today's work today. "Tomorrow" will take care of itself.
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