What does a PR agency really do?

What does a PR agency really do?

If you are a nurse, firefighter or school teacher, people can easily picture what you do at work.

But the same can’t be said for all professions – and you may have no idea what we might get up to at Scriba PR all day. If you are curious, let us enlighten you.

PR – that’s Public Relations in full – is the management function which looks after the reputation of a business or organisation.

It’s our job to help our clients to tell the world about the good work they do and help them to receive the recognition they deserve. All agencies have different ways of achieving this, but here’s a little about ours.

We advise and strategise

There’s no point in a company paying a PR agency to help generate positive publicity, heightened awareness, and all-round good feeling about their brand, if they haven’t thought about why they want to do this and what they want to happen as a result.

So, an important part of what we do involves working with clients to establish business aims and objectives – before recommending the right mix of communications for relevant audiences, to help achieve these goals.

You still don’t know what that looks like, right? Well, under Covid conditions it’s usually a few key people and possibly a couple of cats, on a video call, enthusiastically talking shop and coming up with ideas, some of them more ‘out there’ than others.

Such discussion is often exciting and full of possibilities.  We then make sure we capture all that creativity and filter the best bits into detailed campaign documents.

There will inevitably need to be some research – usually online – to help this process. That involves sitting at a laptop, frowning intently, and perhaps eating biscuits to fuel those all-important creative cogs.

We create content

By this, I really mean we write things. PR involves a lot of copywriting. Can you imagine us tapping away at our keyboards some more, drinking plenty of Yorkshire Tea? That’s about right.

We compose news, opinion, and insight pieces for clients to publish on their own websites. We sort out social media posts to publicise this material. We write press releases to send to the media and newsletters to be pinged out to contacts and customers.

We take photos, make videos and design web graphics, which are also forms of content. Sometimes we might put together brochures and other documents, or a whole new website.

We talk a lot

If you’re now thinking we stare at our screens for hours on end, you’re not wrong. We spend a lot of time doing that. But we’re professional communicators, remember, so it stands to reason that we talk a lot.

We chat to each other, pooling our brainpower to come up with the best ideas, and sounding out colleagues about work in progress. We converse with our business friends and family, including our network of experts in various fields, such as SEO, web design, and email marketing.

And we talk to journalists, influencers, and anyone else who can help our clients to tell their stories.

We fix things

By this, I don’t mean we mend stuff – though, often, we may be called upon to come up with ways an organisation can repair its reputation after something has gone wrong.

We often describe ourselves as a bolt-on marketing department for many of our clients. That means we take on whatever needs to be done, from organising an event to sourcing and ordering branded merchandise, sometimes at short notice.

We are experienced ‘fixers’ and love to roll up our sleeves – again, can you picture us? – and get the job done.

So, in all it’s a varied life at a PR agency – always interesting, often creative, sometimes challenging – but never, ever dull.

By Jenny