Should PR be handled in-house or sourced to an agency?

So many times, when speaking to potential clients they tell me they handle their own public relations activities. If it’s handled by PR professionals within the company, more power to you! However, I tend to cringe when I hear it’s just company executives handling the PR needs. I completely understand limited budgets and the perception that PR is a luxury, however, the image of your company is at stake and not something to be played around with.

I believe PR should be outsourced to a professional and knowledgeable PR agency for several reasons. Let’s discuss…

1.    Focus on what you know. Yes, there is a great amount of information available on the Internet about how to run a PR campaign. However, unless you’ve put in the time to study, learn, experience, truly dive into the world of PR, you most likely aren’t aware of various effective techniques and practices that skilled PR professionals learn throughout their career. I didn’t go to school for PR but was fortunate that I worked alongside PR professionals that took me under their wings and truly gave me the best education in public relations. Experience is priceless. 

2.    Trust an outsider’s view. I think so many times when you’re in something, it’s easy to have a narrow perspective and not see the full picture. It’s like having a second set of eyes review something you’ve been working on for days. That second set of eyes is able to see things you may have overlooked. Same goes for a PR campaign. You’re so involved in your company but may have a hard time seeing what it needs. Let a PR professional help you out.

3.    Your time is valuable. During kick-off meetings with clients, I always tell them, “You have plenty of other things on your plate. Let me take the PR to-do’s off so you can better focus on the other needs of your company.” Nowadays, I see so many executives wearing several different hats, they simply seem exhausted by juggling all of their to-do’s!  Ease the burden and trust your PR campaign in the hands of a PR professional.

I hope these thoughts help some, but at the end of the day, you must do what is best for your company. Keep in mind your budget, short-term and long-term goals, and growth expectations. If you think a PR campaign will enhance your company’s growth, speak with a few agencies and hopefully you’ll find one that truly resonates with you, your company and its image. 

- Megan Saulsbury, founder and CEO, Canyon PR