When it comes to public relations services, there are a slew of areas that immediately come to most people’s minds: media relations, internal communications, copywriting, crisis communication and speechwriting.
But, there is one particular PR service that many people gloss over or take for granted: consulting. In our business, in order to have effective, long-term, strategic communication plans, we have to begin by exploring what the operational goals of a company are for the foreseeable future.
The value of consulting is that it provides a fresh set of eyes to look at a situation – fresh eyes that admittedly are not always the expert in the particular field or industry that is being evaluated. Yet, universally, it is amazing how these responses uncover what the main issues and potential answers are.
From a PR perspective, this exploration and consulting process begins with questions and, many times, lots of them. What do you want? What are your goals? What has worked in the past? What hasn’t? Who are your competitors? How are you unique? How do you make sales? And so on and so forth.
After that, we listen. We listen to both what words they are using, but also HOW they are using them. Is there excitement about some aspects of the business? What about hesitation and trepidation about others? We are able to discover a lot.
And, in over a decade of working with clients in almost every industry and field, do you know what I have discovered? Time and time again, the specific area that someone seeks help in resolving opens the door to a whole other area of focus that the business wasn’t able to see in their own internal evaluation.
This is where the value of fresh eyes and perspectives enters the fray. Utilizing consulting services allows for a company to not only discover a new way to confront a situation but also, it can also provide affirmation that the organization is on the right path towards reaching their operational goals.
And just think, it all begins with the right questions.