How to Hire a Publicist: 6 Tips in Hiring a PR Firm

Is it time to hire a publicist to help spread the insights you have?

Over the past over 20 years, I've been blessed and honored to be featured in a variety of media, including Inc, NY Times, Wall Street Journal, Fox Business, Small Business Trends, and many other podcasts and publications.

In an effort to reach even more people with my inspiration and insights, I recently hired a publicist to help connect me to reporters, podcasters, bloggers and producers. To help give them the insights and angles they need to share with their audiences.

Maybe you're looking for a publicist to help you spread your message farther to the world.

Join the discussion about hiring a publicist on Smart Hustle Nation. Share your comments and questions!

1. You can do publicity all by yourself.

You don't need to hire a publicist to generate publicity for your business. You can do it all by yourself. There's many courses you can take or just look on YouTube.

You just need to have a great story angle, good timing, be persistent, having a relationship (in some way) with a journalist helps. Of course there's much more, but do know you can do this yourself.

Check out some Smart Hustle articles about "free publicity" here.

What you're buying with a publicist is access to their relationships (to speed up doing it on your own), access to their helping you develop your story and expertise and more.

hire a publicist

2. What are your story angles?

There's a lot of different reasons a blogger, podcaster or journalist may want to speak with you for a story they're working on.  Maybe YOU are the subject of the story and can share something that happened to you. Or maybe you're the expert and can share some expertise for their story or news item.

What you're buying with a publicist is access to their relationships (to speed up doing it on your own), access to their helping you develop your story and expertise and more.

A publicist is not a miracle worker.

They can seem like it, but they work best when they're working with a client who has several different angles they can work with, is easy to work with and sees the relationship as a partnership.

3. Speak the language of "media"

Yes, your momma taught you how to speak and you learned a bit more in kindergarten. However, when being interviewed by the media, and to do it well, it takes a bit of finesse and expertise. For broadcast media, speak in sound bites and to the point, time is precious. For more long-form formats, like a 60-minute podcast interview, be clear, substantive and know the audience you're speaking to.

hiring a publicist

4. What to look for in a publicist

  1. Do they care about YOUR success and have an interest in learning all about you so they can identify how to help you shine best.
  2. Do they have a variety of resources and connections in the media? You want a publicist that has years of experience across a variety of media options and uses more than just HARO (which is a great start!) to help you get media coverage.
  3. Do they know your strengths? Your publicist should be able to highlight and leverage your strengths, yet shy away from weaknesses or help you strengthen them. Maybe your strength is the economy or finances? Great! They should make sure you don't get questions about marketing!
  4. Are they a master of story angles? A good publicist will be able to not just peg you into "one box but will be able to see several potential ways you can fit into a story or a story can fit around you.
  5. Does the publicist have proven results? While it's great to "give people a chance", you also want to ensure you get the most return on your investment. Be sure your publicist has a track record of getting media placements for their clients.
  6. You should expect to budget from $3,000 to $5,000 a month for a publicist, as a starting point.

 

5. Where can you spread your message?

  • Broadcast media (TV, radio)
  • Podcast
  • Local media (newspapers, local publications for small towns, etc)
  • Podcasts
  • Blogs
  • Industry publications

If you're an accomplished "personality" and you're looking to spread your message further, a publicist can help connect you to media to spread that message.

Remember, you have to do your part to help your publicist.

Give them advance notice of news items, when you're speaking, or product launches.

Have regular communication with your publicist to work together on pitches and story angles.

6. Here's a few of the publicists (PR firms) on my shortlist:

The Buyer Group

Empowered PR

Connect the Dots PR

Fifth Avenue Brands

The DF Media Group

Doubet Consulting

Was this useful to you? If so, share it with others on LinkedIn and tag me.


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