There are over 45,000 PR firms in the US, according to IBIS World. Choosing the right one for your company can be overwhelming and time-consuming — especially if you’ve never done it before. Yet, there’s a lot riding on your decision.
Choose the wrong PR firm, and your bottom line could take a hit. You could end up pouring a ton of money into a communications strategy that produces little ROI.
But choose the right financial PR agency, and you’ll reap some major benefits, such as:
- Standing out from your competitors
- Building brand recognition
- Launching your company into the next phase of growth
This begs the question: How do you find the right PR firm? This question is even more critical for those in financial services where the landscape is ever-changing and regulations are tight.
Thankfully, we’ve created a list of 6 factors you should consider when hiring a financial PR firm. We even put it in a handy checklist so you can use it as a guide when vetting your options.
If you come across a financial PR agency that doesn’t check all these boxes, keep moving. Your brand’s future depends on it.
The PR firm specializes in your industry (and is passionate about it)
Some PR firms try to be all things to all people. But in financial services, the stakes are too high not to go with a firm that specializes in the industry.
Financial PR firms have connections with key reporters and media outlets where you want to be featured. They have a deep understanding of the industry and can quickly ramp up campaigns. But most importantly, the right financial PR agency is passionate about the industry — and that passion shines through in every facet of what they do.
The PR firm has industry certifications.
As a finance company, you already know that the industry is a heavily regulated space. Hire a firm that understands these regulations and can work within these limitations.
One way to know if a firm is up to snuff is to look at its certifications. A financial PR firm that has a chief economist on staff or holds FINRA and CFA certifications, for example, is proof they have an unrivaled pulse on the industry.
The PR firm is open about its client roster.
You want to work with a PR firm that has a great track record for helping companies similar to yours. Start by digging around on their website. Do they have a client roster showcasing companies they’ve worked with? If the answer is no, ask for this information. The last thing you want to do is hire a firm only to find out its never done a project like yours before.
The PR firm has case studies to back up its claims.
Any PR firm can claim they’re great, but case studies are where the proof comes in. The best communications agencies have case studies and sample work to share with you, so you can see the results they’ve produced for other brands. Brownie points go to firms that have several case studies showcasing a wide variety of services.
The PR firm has fully integrated communications.
Thanks to the rise of digital media, companies can now market their services through more channels. Instead of having to find a specialized firm to handle PR and another to handle marketing and social media, you can find one integrated communications agency to do it all.
There are many benefits to using an integrated communications agency:
- You save time and money by not having to work with several agencies that aren’t in sync with each other.
- Your brand’s voice is amplified more clearly and effectively.
- Your marketing and communications campaigns have more depth and breadth.
Some agencies claim they do it all, but you’ll want to check the team’s qualifications to see how strong they are in areas outside of PR.
The PR firm is a good personality fit.
At the end of the day, choose a financial PR firm you truly connect with. It doesn’t matter if they’re the top-rated agency in the industry. If you don’t jive with the firm’s people and culture, you’re bound to have a bad experience.
If you’re stuck choosing between two firms, go with your gut. Choose the one that inspires you and gets you fired up about what you’re trying to accomplish.
Looking for the right financial PR firm?
Not all PR firms are created equal. If you’re looking for a PR firm that checks all these boxes (and more), look no further than Vested.
Here’s how we shine in the six key areas listed above:
- Passion. Innovation in this industry is at the very core of what we do. We were the first PR firm to have its own venture capital arm (Vested Ventures). We also built a proprietary tech platform that connects business reporters with industry experts.
- Credentials. All of our team members are FINRA and CFA trained and certified. This deep understanding of investment management and financial analysis allows us to craft even stronger communications for our clients.
- Client roster. We work exclusively with companies in the banking, retail, fintech, insurance, private equity, and wealth management spaces. We have our clients displayed front and center on our website, so you can get a feel for what we do.
- Case studies. We’ve got case studies on everything from campaign launches and rebrandings to PR and content marketing. Check ‘em out!
- Fully-integrated communications. When you hire Vested, we do it all for you: public relations, executive communications, creative services, content, digital marketing, and events. We also leverage earned, paid, shared, and owned media to tailor your story to fit your target audience.
- Personality. Our approach to our work is nerdy, fun-loving, and collaborative. We view our clients as friends — and we’re proud of the work we do for them.