As I grow closer and closer to graduation, I’m continually trying to decide whether I’d like an in-house PR position or to work at an agency. There are certainly advantages and disadvantages of both.
Charlotte Risch’s recent post on Valley PR Blog gave me another thing to add to the list of pros and cons. She discussed how your client’s sense of urgency and availability is essential to securing coverage. Because media have tight deadlines and may decide to go with your story last minute, you often don’t have a whole lot of time to secure an interviewee and get them to the interview destination. If you’re at an agency and your client is not responding to your phone calls or e-mails, this can result in a missed opportunity and sometimes a damaged relationship between you and the reporter.
A situation like this seems to be less likely in an in-house environment. For example, at Allstate we recently pitched a story promoting motorcycle safety as more people take to two wheels to save gas. When the media called asking for an interviewee in less than a few hours, all we had to do was walk down the hall and check the availability of sales leaders in the office who ride motorcycles. If one wasn’t available, we rode the elevator to check with another. Although not everyone is in the office at all times, it seems that in an in-house position, getting a hold of your client and securing interviewees is much easier.
By the way, the segment never ended up airing. (Boo!)