Behind every successful beauty brand is an effective PR strategy that ensures the brand is on the radar of its target customers day in and day out. The challenge for most beauty brand managers is identifying the best way to devise and implement a successful PR strategy. Some brands manage all of their PR in-house, but many collaborate with a beauty PR agency to draw on that team’s specialist expertise and enviable network. However, the number of beauty PR agencies or large PR agencies with a beauty team can be overwhelming – whether you’re new to beauty PR or an accomplished brand champion.
Finding the right beauty PR agency for your brand or business is a critical step in achieving commercial success, increased sales and brand visibility. In this article our beauty PR experts share their top tips and guidance to help you find your perfect beauty pr agency match.
The Role of a Beauty PR Agency
A beauty PR agency delivers strategic counsel and creative promotional campaigns to help achieve their client’s commercial goals. They work on the basis of creating credible and influential ‘third party endorsements’ – among press, influencers, celebrities etc. which are “earned media” – rather than paid channels (i.e. advertising) and are therefore viewed as more trustworthy among consumers, and likely to generate sales.
The Benefits of Working with PR Experts
Whether you are a brand founder or beauty business, working with a PR partner will save you time, money and stress. The team within a beauty PR agency have spent years building up relationships with specialist press, influencers, and VIPs – they have an influential and valuable network which you can leverage instantly. By outsourcing to specialists, brand owners can divert their valuable time and resources to building and growing their business. Partnering with the right beauty PR agency can boost your brand exposure, establish your reputation, and increase new customer growth.
Where to Start Looking for Beauty PR Agencies
One of the best places to search is within your own network. Start by checking with peers, colleagues and connections and ask for their personal recommendations regarding beauty PR expertise. Make sure you get a clear picture of the beauty PR work conducted, the results achieved and what the working relationship was like. Do they sound like a good fit for your brand and how your team work? If so, get in touch to discuss your needs!
Conduct Research Online
Whilst Googling ‘beauty PR agency’ may bring up lots of results (paid and unpaid) – bear in mind it’s always worthwhile checking the Public Relations Guilds and Professional Bodies for accredited agencies. The Chartered Institute of PR, or the Public Relations Communications Association are good places to start. These have individual or agency directories, listing out accredited suppliers based on industry sector. PRs have to pay to be members and must adhere to codes of conduct and standards of services – a reassurance well worth having!
Is a Bigger PR Agency Better?
Larger PR agencies can appear very impressive, with an extensive client list and a well-known name. However, the larger portfolio usually means that only the highest-spending accounts benefit from a strong specialist team, with smaller accounts usually stretched across a few junior individuals who are limited in the amount of time and attention they can spend on your brand. Your account team may also work across numerous industry verticals rather than specialise in your specific sector (ie. beauty).
The benefit of working with a boutique, specialist PR agency is that your brand can benefit from increased focus from across the team. Your brand will represent a bigger portion of their portfolio and the team will be more invested and passionate about helping your brand succeed. These kinds of agencies typically specialise in one industry, for example a beauty PR agency, this means they should know your industry inside out, have strong media relationships and a fantastic portfolio of successful beauty pr work.
8 Tips to Choose the Best Beauty PR Agency for Your Brand
When you partner with a beauty PR agency you need to feel confident in their ability to deliver results and look forward to working closely with them. Whichever agency you choose its important they get “you” “your brand” and “your business” so take your time finding your perfect match. Below are 8 key questions you should ask when considering if a particular agency is right for your brand:
- Do they have relevant experience? Have they worked in the beauty industry or with similar companies and brands?
- Have they got some great testimonials and case studies available to look through?
- Do they have the right relationships with key media and your target audiences? Check with your own media contacts if they’ve worked with this agency or person before.
- Who will be your main contact? Sometimes agencies wheel out the senior team for a pitch, only to make a junior person your day-to-day lead. Make sure you’re happy with who’s actually doing the work and being your main touch-point – will they deliver what you ask for?
- What’s their working style like? Some agencies take a hands-on approach with lots of updates and emails, others only surface at key points. Make sure you’re clear about how you like to work and ensure that they are compatible with your expectations.
- What are their fees and how do they measure ROI? It’s essential that you understand their pricing policy so that you can manage your budget accurately. How much will they charge? What will this include? And critically, how do they measure success and show their value to your business? Discuss deliverables right from the outset so that both sides are clear what is expected.
- How do they bill? This could be either a project-by-project basis or on a retainer. Check that you’re clear and comfortable on what each will mean for you.
- Are there any conflicts of interest? Do they represent other beauty brands, key competitors or businesses that conflict with your own interests? Always review their current client portfolio.
Schedule Briefing & Chemistry Meetings
Once you’ve identified a shortlist of beauty PR agencies you like, it’s a great idea to set some initial briefing and chemistry meetings. You are about to embark on a close working relationship so use this opportunity to assess if you are going to you get on well or not! These meetings are also an opportunity to understand the agency’s main selling points, how they work and how they can best support you with their range of beauty PR services.
Prepare a Clear Brief
This is an essential step in the process but one which is often missed altogether! Ensure you prepare a top level brief for each agency candidate – outline what you’re looking to achieve from your PR, over what timeframe, and for what budget. Depending on your experience you may have an idea of the types of PR services you require such as a product launch strategy or PR campaign management.
A beauty PR agency brief doesn’t need to be super detailed, a list of bullet points is sufficient for starting a meaningful discussion. Without this, you’re likely to end up with a ‘pin the tail on the donkey’ approach which leaves you disappointed and frustrated by the results (or lack thereof!).
Similarly, the PR agency should also question you before taking on the account to ensure clarity, avoid mismatched expectations and ultimately, poor deliverables. Without clarity on the campaign objectives, you have no way to determine whether these campaigns were successful, or worth the investment.
Finally, give a clear deadline for responding to your brief and have a final round of discussions before appointing your perfect PR agency partner!
Choose an Award-Winning Beauty PR Agency
At Kendrick PR, we thrive on creating winning formulas of strategic and tactical support for premium beauty brands, aesthetic clinics, practitioners and entrepreneurs. We lead with our values: passion, professionalism, and authenticity!
Founded in 2015 by award-winning communications expert Julia Kendrick, Kendrick PR are an experienced and passionate team who thrive on creating tangible success for every client. Since launch, we have delivered outstanding results for some of the industry’s most innovative brands and exciting entrepreneurs, such as ALLÉL, Debbie Thomas, The Private Clinic, Oxygenetix and Medik8 – and we’d love to support your brand. Please do get in touch to book your complimentary discover call with our expert team.