Realism and patience the ingredients needed for all PR campaigns

Realism and patience the ingredients needed for all PR campaigns

As the curtain closes on 2013 I shall raise a glass and toast what has been a great year for my business.


Like all years it has had its highs and lows, but I can say that 2013 is a year which we at Nolan PR will see as a defining one where we’ve won some excellent contracts, working with grateful clients who tell us how much they enjoy dealing with us as well.


What all these clients share in common and why we enjoy our business relationship is they see PR as a long term strategy, and with this patient yet measured approach we find we can work best with them.


Whilst thinking of this during the week I received in my inbox a blog formed by a senior US PR exec about managing expectations, and it really struck a chord as I believe unrealistic zero to hero in a split second beliefs are the reason for failed PR strategies.


This American blog’s author spoke of how he has encountered clients expecting someone with a tiny budget to be on Oprah in a couple of months, and this instant gratification is something we have in the UK too.


Many about to embark on PR are setting themselves up for failure.

This post isn’t about discouragement. It is about making sure expectations are grounded so that you have a sound strategy with measurable goals, helping you create sustainable growth and success for your brand.

I’ve had some clients get cracking PR openings but BBC Breakfast and similar shows have an incredibly limited number of slots available and the competition is insanely tough. Landing one of these opportunities is possible with the right pitch and a huge dollop of perseverance and the stuff called luck, but it simply won’t happen for most people.

That’s not bad either. Just because you don’t get placed on the couch with Bill and Susanna doesn’t mean your PR efforts are futile. That’s not how you should be defining success. Take note, PR is a long-term strategy. Success doesn’t happen by with “15 minutes of fame.” It happens by consistent results over a long period of time.

Our society craves ‘it now’, but that’s not how it works with PR. If you’re expecting to see amazing, long-lasting results from your PR efforts in just a few weeks, you’re going to be sorely disappointed.

Sure, it’s possible that you have a story and earn a flurry of media coverage overnight, but you’ll find that the benefits from that kind of success don’t last long.

PR isn’t a short-term strategy. You won’t get worthwhile, enduring results in a short period of time. It takes time to build your brand, to gain credibility, and to shape the public’s perception of you or your company. You need to commit to PR for the life of your business.

I stand behind my clients and what they’re offering and I believe in the messages I help to promote. However, I also understand that most likely none of us are going to change the world. At times clients think their product, service, or idea is the most earth changing thing ever, and they assume that everyone in the media will automatically agree and be clambering to cover it.

Reporters are pitched bucket loads of “game-changing” ideas every day. So while you might have something really interesting to offer, you’re not alone.


Often, it’s vital to take a step back to make sure you have realistic expectations for your publicity campaign. This will help you stay focused, motivated, and on target to achieving sustainable, long-term results that deliver real benefits for your business.