INK Q&A

 

What is pay-for-performance public relations?

Pay-for-performance refers to the way a PR agency charges for its media relations services, i.e., the press coverage it secures for its clients. The PR agency’s fees are tied to delivering actual press coverage in the targeted media that the client approves. The more the press coverage in the targeted media, the more the client pays. The less coverage, the less the client pays.

Does INK charge a retainer?

Yes, INK charges a portion of the client’s overall PR budget as a monthly service fee, or retainer, to cover the base costs of managing and servicing the account. The remainder of the PR budget is allocated as an earmarked amount to be spent only against actual placements within the targeted media.

Does INK charge hourly fees for its services?

No.

Is pay-for-performance public relations a new concept?

No. INK inc. PR has been practicing this form of media relations since the early nineties, when its founder, Dick Grove, was frustrated with the traditional compensation culture of fat retainers based on inflated hourly fees designed to support an expensive overhead. Grove wanted his clients’ media coverage to be tied to actual results, not just effort. While the media and INK’s compensation packages have become more diversified, INK continues to believe strongly in sharing the financial risks with our clients.

How is the media selected & priced?

We work with you to select a list of media targets that will help you the most: print, broadcast, and online. Prices for media placements are generally based on the audience; the bigger the audience the bigger the price.

How long are your contracts?

INK recommends a six-month to one-year contract so our media relations team has the time to develop stories for selected media targets including national media, which have longer lead times.  Pitching the media is often a long, drawn-out process that may take weeks and even months to fully bear the fruit of an actual story.

Would you be willing to be paid based on sales or leads?

No. INK does not base its compensation on this kind of metric because so many other elements in the marketing mix affect these measurements. INK recognizes that many clients see sales or lead generation as the priority of a publicity campaign, and INK will work with a client to achieve that when necessary. INK, however, believes strongly that even short term goals such as these must have a foundation of brand visibility built through longer-term media goals.

What kinds of clients does INK inc. PR serve?

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 relations, crisis management, and digital media.  Additional services include media training, video production work and more.

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. We have the ability to serve clients worldwide. Because of our model, we are able to attract senior-level media talent 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 in reaching out to more targeted media in the trades and online digital media.

Do you guarantee media coverage?                                                                                                      

No PR firm can guarantee media coverage. Firms that say they can are being dishonest. No one controls or manages the media. What INK guarantees is that our pay-for-performance PR compensation is tied directly to the actual media coverage delivered.

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?

Yes. Writing those releases is covered by the monthly retainer. However, INK seldom relies on press releases to secure media 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. After more than twenty years of interacting with the editorial side of the media, INK has established great and long-standing relationships. But those relationships are only as good as the stories we pitch. Even the closest of friends won’t write a story just because we know them. It has to be relevant, timely, and serve their audience. 

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