It is the firm’s job to try to sell you on its ability to effectively deliver your message to the right people. During the initial meeting, you need to articulate your objectives in an up-front manner. Have a list of issues and questions prepared that focuses on your agenda. Listen carefully to their pitch and the answers they give to your questions, such as:
- Who will be working on your account—a senior account executive, a junior account executive, or an entry-level trainee?
- How will you and the PR firm work together as a team?
- Who will be responsible for copy?
- Who is on the firm’s media contact list?
- What have been their most effective media placements?
- What success have they had in creating publicity campaigns for businesses such as yours?
Don’t leave the meeting until you feel that all of your questions and concerns have been answered. If you do decide to hire an IMC firm, you must stay on top of it and keep the communication lines open. This will ensure that your PR needs are met to your satisfaction.