Here at PRowl, we choose our clients just like any other firm does. We initially correspond via email, and then set up a meeting to talk about working together, what the client wants, and what we can do for them. It’s important to have these meetings, because you learn what you can and cannot do for a client, based on your firm and your staff, student-run PR firm or not! Below are ways to avoid choosing the wrong client for your firm:
- Understanding goals: Talk to your client about where they want their company to be in a few years. They could want more customers, more awareness, or more targeted messages, and the list goes on. As you’re listening, think about whether or not you and your team can accomplish these goals, while benefiting your firm.
- Setting expectations: I find this to be the most difficult, but necessary task. Having a client who has unrealistic expectations of you can (and will) put you in an awkward situation. You can avoid this by being clear in what you can realistically accomplish well. Of course you want the job, but if you don’t set expectations appropriately, you could be out of a job and slapped with a not-so-great rep.
- Transparency: In an agency, you will have several different clients. When you meet with a potential client, be honest is how much time it will take to accomplish their goals. With so many agencies transitioning out of monthly retainers, firms are being less transparent about billable hours. Save yourself the grief and scheduling issues by honestly communicating with your client.
Do you have any additional tips? Let us know!