Fireside / March 2014

Cinderella Story

When filling out a NCAA bracket, many of us have a tendency to lean toward the assumption that the big names in basketball (think: Louisville, Kentucky, Michigan) will make their way through the big dance onto the Final Four and ultimately, one of them will claim the crown.  These are the teams with a strong brand behind them –their coaches and star players are often featured on the sports networks and it’s not uncommon to hear their names referenced during conversations throughout the regular season.  However, schools like George Mason and Richmond’s own VCU have taught us that taking a chance on the unfamiliar may prove to offer a far more favorable risk-reward opportunity.  When selecting a PR agency partner, companies should take this mentality into consideration.  From our perspective, here are a few advantages of a boutique PR agency to keep in mind when setting a bracket strategy for agency selection:

basketball_Salvatore Vuono

From tip-off to the final buzzer, seasoned professionals are on the court

You can count on the fact that the team that pitches the business will be the force behind your account.  You’ll have direct access to senior team members, including the CEO/president of the firm.  Even when working with junior team members, you can rest-assured that they are closely collaborating with and learning from their superiors who have many years of experience.

Hands-on Coaching Approach

Boutique agencies work with a limited number of clients and therefore, each account, no matter the budget, is of utmost importance.  The firm may not have the time or resources to pitch a new account, so they will do what it takes to keep their current clients satisfied.  Since the staff is dedicated to fewer accounts, they’re able to allocate more time and attention to helping you achieve your goals.

Fine-tuned Skills

Large firms have large staff and therefore, are capable of taking on a diverse portfolio of clients.  Due to limited team resources, boutique agencies must often be more selective in the type of clients they take on.  Quite often, these firms are built upon a particular niche.  This allows the team members to be fully immersed and specialized in the industry they represent; demonstrating extensive knowledge in one area versus general knowledge in a variety of areas.

While there is no debating big name agencies provide talented teams and creative in-game strategies, the offerings of a boutique PR firm may just be the key to a slamdunk for your communications’ objectives.