We often work with clients who have multiple communications agencies for different aspects of their program. They will have one for social media, another for digital marketing, another for media relations and perhaps a separate firm for crisis communications. And they will typically have another partner for pursuing speaking opportunities. Oftentimes we are brought in to consult in one of these areas – and what we find is that, gradually, we start advising closely on one or more of the others. There’s a simple reason for this: everything is connected. Your communications strategy isn’t just a series of silos but an intricate web where what effects one part will impact another. That’s why it’s beneficial to have a “one-stop-shop” communications agency capable of handling most, if not all, of these things. Here are three reasons why.
You Need a Common Consensus on Messaging
In an era where organizations are more scrutinized than ever before, and messages put out to the public must be nuanced and sensitive to current issues and business needs, it’s crucial for everyone to be onboard with the messages going out. If you have one agency working on social posts and another working on responding to the media, there’s potential for misalignment and maybe even the mergence of a PR crisis. We find it best when we have a hand in developing core messaging and then also are responsible for disseminating it. That way nothing can fall through the cracks and damage your reputation.
There’s Better Integration of Communication Channels
When you have one agency working across communications channels, there’s greater ability to use one channel to reinforce another. For instance, whenever we secure a media placement, we generally use a client’s social platforms, newsletter and/or company website to promote it. Being responsible for all these areas of public relations enhances speed and efficiency, while also ensuring all channels are aligned on message. A one-stop-shop agency ensures a well-oiled machine when it comes to integrated communications.
There’s More Flexibility To Revise Strategy Over Time
The communications needs of an organization and the broader industry landscape are constantly evolving, meaning a communications strategy may have to pivot on short notice. Having too many “cooks in the kitchen” can make it more difficult to turn the ship around or carefully navigate the choppy waters ahead. Having an agency capable of various aspects of your company communications makes such a change of direction easier.
Of course, not every agency is able to successfully carry out an integrated strategy across all areas of communications, and whether you need extra help depends on the organization and mission at hand. But it’s always worth checking out what any one agency can offer so that you can better integrate your approach. To learn more about Stern Strategy Group’s offerings, see here.