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Fri - 30.01.2015

Public relations

Is it wrong for a PR firm to forego a monthly retainer, and charge its clients only when it succeeds in getting them mentioned by the media?

Does it make a difference if the PR firm is doing this to help startups shy on capital?

What about if the PR firm has put specific price tags on particular media outlets?

These are the questions that public relations professionals, their clients, tech bloggers and their readers have been grappling with in the wake of yesterday’s announcement by TechCrunch Co-Editor Alexia Tsotsis of a blog-wide ban on PR company PRServe, following her discovery that the firm had been charging clients $750 for getting them covered by an “A-level blog like TechCrunch.”

Chris Barrett, the Founder of PRserve, responded by posting a notice on the company’s website in which he claimed to be “confounded” by the situation. “The only difference between how we share stories and the way a traditional PR firm works is that we do not charge a $5,000 monthly retainer, irrespective of results. We only collect an extremely modest amount for successful stories (a flat rate of $425 - $750 per story), depending on the media outlet,” he wrote.


Emma Knight's picture

Emma Knight


2012-11-09 19:24

Dan Connolly walked into the lion’s den on Friday, telling an international audience of sports editors, journalists and sports experts how they can work better with PR people.

Mr Connolly, Sports Public Relations Director for the marketing agency Havas Sports & Entertainment in the U.K., acknowledged that “It wouldn’t be healthy to act as if we’re on the same team.”

While public relations people are trying to get publicity for their brands, and media have a different agenda, there are ways to improve cooperation to mutual benefit, he says.

“Brands and organisations have stories they want to share, things they want to promote, and media organisations want the best possible content to give to their audiences. So good content is always going to give us a point in common,” he says.

For the rest of this story please see the conference blog


Larry Kilman's picture

Larry Kilman


2012-03-30 16:25

At a time when newspapers are scrambling to hire social media editors and incorporate users' reporting, the Associated Press is moving in the opposite direction.

In an effort to defend quality journalism, the AP has hired the public relations company Speed Communications. The PR move aims to distance the AP from social media and the inconsistent reporting that accompanies it, instead emphasizing the news organization's old school credibility. According to PR Week, Speed Communications will build the AP brand over a few years, launching a campaign of issues-led, thought leadership and corporate programmes.

Considering the AP's industry clout, hiring a PR firm to reinforce the brand is a surprising move. How could one of the world's largest and most reliable news organisations feel so threatened by social media?


Florence Pichon


2011-07-12 14:39

According to an article published today in The Independent, some are speculating an unexpected source of future journalism: public relation agencies. Such speculation has been sparked by Edelman, an American PR firm, which recently appointed Richard Sambrook, the former head of BBC News, to the position of Chief Content Officer. More speculation has been caused by the company's hiring of Stefan Stern of the Financial Times as its new head of strategy. While the worlds of PR and journalism frequently overlap, Edelman's hiring of Sambrook and Stern could indicate a new strategy by PR firms. Sambrook, who claims that "every company has to be a media company in their own right," suggests that companies should bypass traditional news sources and go directly to the consumer. While Sambrook maintains that the company is "not moving into the news business," he does assert that the changing landscape of journalism presents valuable opportunities for PR to expand.


Carole Wurzelbacher


2010-06-03 18:42

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