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Instant gratification takes too long – why PR needs patience and time to deliver

Author, Michael Dooley, says “The obsession with instant gratification blinds us from our long-term potential.”  This could not be truer when it comes to implementing a PR campaign. Time and again we are faced with clients who initially commit to PR and after a short period, normally three months, they decide to pause or cancel. The reasons vary, but the impact remains the same. By that time your PR is just starting to lift off. The media education and awareness has improved and the market has started to grow accustomed to regular news and opinion from your company. To abruptly stop just means you will need to redo the three months you have just invested in. This is particularly true if your PR remains dormant for months or years. So, essentially, you have not spent your money wisely and will have wasted a quarterly budget on PR that has no future. While I understand that the economy is tough, both locally and globally, PR remains one of the most cost-effective marketing and communications tools around. As opposed to cancelling it outright, talk to your PR practitioner and maybe consider options, like reducing the spend instead of cancelling it all. The big picture and long-term potential that Dooley speaks of is really where you should be focusing. What will PR bring to the business over a year or three? Assign value to media relationships, market education and awareness. Understand why it’s important for the market to perceive your company as thought leaders. Why do they need to see and hear from the face of the brand? All these elements, ensconced within a PR strategy, helps make your business believable, trustworthy and relevant. It’s not something that above the line can do easily or cheaply. If you value your relationships with both media and customers, why would you just stop communicating with them? PR is a long-term investment in brand building, it’s not a quick fix or quarterly experiment. They say that what comes easy, doesn’t last, but what lasts won’t come easy. Don’t give up on PR, you need it more than you know.

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