PR: It’s NOT All About Relationships … Is it?

Old school PR pros: “It’s all about RELATIONSHIPS …”

Modern PR pros: “It’s all about IDEAS …”

In an ideal world, the best pitch, the best ideas presented, would win.

Media interviews or media coverage would depend solely upon the quality or novelty of the pitch.

But we don’t live … or practice B2B PR … in an ideal world.

Our world is a messy place where other human factors affect outcomes.

Who and what gets covered by the media is decided by smart but time-constrained human beings … people whose decisions are affected – consciously or subconsciously – by their own experiences, preferences and biases.

Though they might like to, most journalists don’t have time to sift through all the pitches they get … or to vet new, unproven sources.

And most reporters won’t waste their time on a PR person who has dropped the ball or burned them in the past.

In today’s competitive, rushed environment, overworked, time-pressed journalists often turn to PR pros they know and trust … to save precious time and meet deadlines.

These PR pros follow the reporter’s work, understand their needs, respect their deadlines and deliver on their promises. They have a relationship.

According to author and B2B sales guru Neil Rackham: “The relationship is the reward for delivering value.” (Hat tip to the Two Bobs podcasters, Blair Enns and David C. Baker, for sharing this quote.)

That relationship between the PR pro and the journalist didn’t develop because the PR pro bought the reporter a drink … or took them to a ball game.

It came because that PR pro delivered value. And it grew from there.

And ultimately, as a client, isn’t that what you want your PR firm to do for you, too …. deliver value?

So, is success in B2B PR and media relations all about RELATIONSHIPS?

Of course not.

But it’s not all about the best IDEA or PITCH either.

It’s about the best combination of BOTH – clever ideas getting through via good relationships.

The best PR agency partners offer you both.

Author: Jim Bianchi

Jim is president at Bianchi PR with 40+ years of B2B PR experience in corporate and agency settings across multiple industries.

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