A PR consultant works on a short-term basis within your organization, either as part of a team or in an advisory role. There are many benefits to bringing a PR consultant into the fold, and there are a handful of essential tasks you can confidently ask them to oversee.

Let’s take a closer look at what the right PR consultant brings to your company.

5 Key Benefits of Hiring a PR Consultant

First, it’s important to discuss why so many companies hire PR consultants, especially those with a dedicated PR team or department.

1. Deep expertise and a “helicopter view”

For PR consultants, excellent outcomes are their livelihood. They are not enmeshed in your business, so they don’t feel the same pressures as employees and are free to take a broad, holistic view of your goals to find the optimal path. 

In addition to objectivity, most PR consultants have a specialized niche, so they have deep knowledge about trends, tools and methods that would most benefit you.

2. A fresh well of creativity

Consultants are constantly immersed in the PR and business world, attending conferences, honing their craft and meeting industry innovators. Your firm benefits from this experience because a consultant’s professional outlook is always broader.

3. Proven methods

Because PR consultants often work across various verticals, they quickly develop proven strategies and models that can be used as a springboard to craft a highly effective plan for your company.

4. Results-oriented work

A consultant’s success is measured by the company’s success, and their reputation is built on providing tangible, actionable results. It’s never in their best interests to stall for time or follow drawn-out testing methods, so you’re assured quick, flexible, high-quality work that gets results.

5. Networking

Independent PR consultants always have a wide and varied network of valuable contacts ranging from investors and industry experts to journalists, copywriting experts and other entrepreneurs. If your company needs a specialist in any area, a PR consultant likely has at least one strong contact to fill the need.

What Can a PR Consultant Do for Your Business?

Here are five major objectives you can trust your PR consultant to carry out once you’ve brought them on board:

1. Launch your product or service on the international market.

Moving your company into a new market is only possible if you have an intimate understanding of how its history, culture, trends and agendas affect business. 

It’s not always possible to spend much time in a new location, so relying on a consultant who is either a native or deeply involved with the market means you have access to this critical information to ensure a successful launch. 

For example, I specialize in the German, Spanish, UK and American markets. I stay up-to-date on trends, communication specifics and relevant agendas and constantly improve my understanding of these cultures. This level of knowledge allows me to offer a uniquely informed perspective to my clients.

2. Elevating the work of your PR department.

Two things I often did for clients while being a consultant were auditing their current PR situation and helping them hire a strong team. In one case, I teamed up with a startup’s HR director to screen and interview finalists for a PR director position. My presence ensured they hired the most qualified, well-fitting professional. 

It’s also common for consultants to share their expertise with an in-house team. PR consultants can teach your team how to handle certain media outlets or prepare your firm for an IPO, for example. This kind of knowledge often only comes from those immersed in the industry, so it helps elevate your department and, in turn, your business.

3. Handling a crisis.

Crises need swift, professional action from a seasoned expert. A strong consultant can quickly assemble a team, create a unified information hub, prepare the speaker for press briefings and ensure other departments are kept in sync as the situation unfolds.

While it’s vital to have crisis plans established in advance, bringing in a PR consultant gives you peace of mind that details you may have missed or events you may not have anticipated are handled in a way that minimizes damages and maintains positive relationships with investors. 

4. Giving professional media training.

Speaking to top media outlets (e.g., Forbes, Bloomberg, etc.) is a skill that needs to be learned and practiced. A consultant can work with speakers to prepare them with solid storytelling, repeatedly verifying facts and figures and seamless explanations of any past problems. They can also work on practicing professional reactions and proper gestures.

5. Organizing meetings with important community members.

Finally, one of the most valuable tasks you can entrust to a PR consultant is organizing introductions and helping you integrate into top circles. Whether you need to meet investors, enter the echelons of leading business professionals or speak alongside politicians, a strong consultant knows how to make these meetings happen. 

Tips For Hiring the Best PR Consultant

  • Define your needs and goals

Knowing your goals makes it much easier to find and utilize a strong PR consultant. Do you want to promote marketing campaigns? Get featured in tier-1 media? Speak with investors? Once you have clearly defined your needs, you can seek a consultant with that specialization.

  • Ask for recommendations

Social media is a great place to get excellent recommendations. LinkedIn is the best choice, especially if you have a sizable network. However, connecting with industry players, colleagues and other relevant people online is the ideal way to get a shortlist of top-tier PR consultant recommendations.

  • Study each candidate’s portfolio and track record

As mentioned above, a PR consultant’s success is measured by their track record with other brands. Research their work with previous clients to see how they achieved goals, what tools they used and what level of results they produced. This will give you a better picture of how well they can perform for your company.