A public relations (PR) consulting agreement is a document that formalizes the terms of a business relationship between a PR consultant and an organization. The agreement provides a complete overview of how the partnership will be carried out, allowing the parties to sign off on the scope of the services, the payment terms and rate, and confidentiality and non-disclosure provisions. In completing the form, the parties minimize the potential for misunderstandings regarding their respective responsibilities.
PR consultants provide their clients with advice regarding their public image and often manage their clients’ public relations generally. Their responsibilities include improving an organization’s PR policies, speaking publicly on behalf of the company, and producing material to be published in the media. Occasionally, consultants are hired to assist clients in restoring their public image following a controversy.
Consultants tend to focus on particular industries and forms of media (e.g., print media, radio, digital, etc.), and their services vary on their niche. In general, a PR consultant’s services include the following:
- Advising. Providing strategies and practices for effectively presenting a client’s company to the media to create a positive public perception.
- Creating material. Developing public statements, press releases, articles, or other informational material for traditional and digital media outlets.
- Media auditing. Researching and gathering analytics on their client’s coverage in the media and conveying public concerns back to the client.
- Managing public relations. Organizing events, interviews, and public appearances and maintaining a positive relationship between their clients and the media.
As PR consultants can manage a variety of responsibilities, the document ensures that clients do not solicit services outside the scope of the agreement. Furthermore, the agreement ensures the involved parties understand the payment details, when the relationship will start and end, and who will be responsible for work-related expenses.
Marketing and advertising aim to raise awareness of a company’s products or services, while public relations ensure a client’s public communications are received favorably. Nonetheless, PR consultants often collaborate with a company’s marketing or communications department to effectively achieve the client’s objectives.