Pay-on-Performance PR Q&A - INK inc PR

How long has INK been around?

INK was born in March, 1997, from Dick Grove’s experience and frustrations with traditional firms’ structure and compensation. INK believes that a PR firm should share in the financial risk with the client by providing a more accountable method of compensation based on actual media results. It’s an old-fashioned idea that seems to be catching on since more and more PR firms are attempting to adopt INK’s pay-for-performance model as clients demand better ROI on their PR investment. But the traditional compensation culture of fat retainers based on inflated hourly fees and overhead does not easily morph into INK’s more client-focused method, and failure is usually the result.

What do you mean by “pay-for-performance”?
“Pay-on-performance,” Pay-for-performance” and “Performance based compensation” are interchangeable terms that INK defines as being paid for actual media placements, not by the hour. With pay-on-performance model, the bulk of our compensation is based on whether or not INK actually gets you the media coverage you want.

How is the media selected & priced? 

On average, individual publicity placements in the media usually average between $1,500 and $3,500.   There are also higher priced premium national media targets that a client may wish INK to target, for example the national TV networks, or media like the WSJ, and The New York Times. INK is experienced in securing editorial coverage in all different forms of media… in general business and consumer news media as well as vertical trade publications…in print, broadcast and, of course, online.

Please remember, only the small monthly retainer is fixed, INK has to earn anything beyond that based on press coverage or the client won’t be billed.

How long are your contracts? 

INK recommends a 6-month contract so we can meet editorial deadlines that many publications need.

Would you be willing to be paid based on how your PR efforts impact our bottom line (i.e. the percentage of sales/new leads, etc.)?
Traditionally, INK does not base its compensation on this kind of metric because so many other elements that we don’t control may affect the measurement. The primary purpose of a media relations campaign is to build visibility of your product, service, building your industry expertise and to integrate with other marketing initiatives.

What kinds of clients does INK inc PR service?
Most of INK’s clients are small-to-medium sized enterprises including some entrepreneurial startups. However, we pride ourselves on our ability to fit into the overall structure of large corporations, as well. Our capabilities are broad when it comes to media because of the way we are structured.

INK can supplement internal PR/Marketing departments with our focus on publicity placements or we can offer full-service public relations that include strategic counseling, investor’s relations, crisis management and digital media.    Additional services include media training, digital marketing, and production work.

What is meant by “virtual”? Does INK inc PR have a “brick and mortar” headquarters?
Yes. INK’s corporate headquarters is located at 10561 Barkley Place in Overland Park, Kansas but has the ability to serve clients worldwide.   Because of our virtual model, we are able to attract senior level media talent across home offices scattered throughout the country and globally. Our use of modern technologies creates an online office environment that is available 24/7.

What kinds of media?
INK specializes in securing coverage in top-tier national media. This includes broadcast, print, and online outlets. In addition, we are very successful at placing stories in local and regional media outlets. We can focus on certain media markets and niche publications, or we can go after the broader national audiences…or a combination of both. Our clients have seen their stories and products appear on CNN, CNBC, MSNBC, The Today Show, MTV, E! and in the Wall Street Journal, USA Today, The New York Times, InTouch, People, Forbes, Fortune and many, many more. We have also had success with reaching out to more targeted media in the trades and online digital media.

Do you guarantee media coverage?
The truth is, no PR firm can guarantee you coverage. And if they do, they’re being dishonest. No one controls or manages the media. What we can guarantee is that you will be paying more for results and less for effort.

Does INK offer any other services beyond media outreach?
INK offers a full spectrum of PR services. From media training to event planning to digital marketing to consulting, INK is equipped for all of your public relations needs.

Do you write press releases?
INK offers two press releases per month to clients under contract at no additional fee but does not rely on press releases to get coverage. We understand the value of pitching a journalist directly and that crafting a good storyline aimed at the right person is more effective than a press release or even an email blast.

Do you have good contacts at the major national news outlets?
Yes, we do. But contacts alone don’t guarantee media coverage unless we deliver a story that will get their interest and is right for their audience.

Can you handle different industries? We consider ourselves experts in the media and how it works. We understand producers, journalists, and bloggers because those are the worlds from which we come. No need to hire a niche PR agency when it comes to a specific industry. Our vast network of media specialist have a variety of industry expertise that has served a variety of our clients. Check out our client roster.. here.