How much does PR cost in 2023-24
The cost of tech PR services in the UK can vary based on several factors, including the complexity of the project, the scope of work, the reputation and experience of the PR agency, and the duration of the engagement. In this blog we aim to provide you with specific figures for planning purposes but as you would expect these will vary according to your individual requirements.
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What is a PR consultant’s hourly rate?
PR rates in the UK are often like those in other major markets. Hourly rates for PR professionals in the UK can range from £75 to £300 or more, depending on the expertise and experience of the individual or agency. We charge a flat rate of £120 per hour and we field an entirely senior team.
How much is a PR agency monthly retainer?
Monthly retainers typically start at a few thousand pounds and can go up significantly based on the level of service, complexity, range of services and deliverables, and duration ie the scope of work involved. We do not operate a retainer-based model, more on that later, but for context we are currently, delivering programmes with monthly budgets of between £3k and £17k per month.
Retainer model versus SLA agreement
Not all agencies use a retainer-based model. Some, like us, prefer an SLA agreement based on contracted target variable deliverables (TVDs). This type of agreement means you will know how many activities (press releases, interviews, blogs, articles, exhibition publicity packages, roundtables, insight reports and social programs etc.) you are going to get over the campaign period.
The variable, in target deliverables, is determined by two things:
Your business requirements which may evolve and change month to month.
Which format the media and your target audience demonstrate the greatest appetite.
Any changes to the TVDs should always be undertaken collaboratively with the client.
But how much should you allocate: of course, this depends on your specific needs but an annual budget IRO £40k can be made to work hard. More is, of course, better if planned properly!
It’s important to note that pricing for tech PR services in the UK, as in other regions, can be influenced by the specific requirements of your project, the desired outcomes, and the overall strategy. Costs may also vary depending on the location within the UK, with London often having higher rates compared to other cities.
To determine a more accurate estimate of the cost of tech PR services in the UK, it is advisable to consult with PR agencies or professionals who can provide you with a tailored quote based on your specific needs and goals.
How much does a PR Strategy cost?
There are five elements to a communication strategy, which is used to underpin any proactive PR:
Value proposition – the distinct differentiator of your brand on which all internal and external comms hangs.
Persona development – tight descriptors of the emotional, mental and aspirational state of your ideal target buyer.
Positioning statement – a credible explanation of how you are a better choice for your target buyer than the competitive option.
Messaging for each stage of the buying cycle – people need different information at different stages of the buying cycle.
Validation – a quick fire process for ensuring your comms strategy is on point and provoking the appropriate responses.
Some companies are more mature than others and will have done some of the hard work – they may have a value proposition and developed ideal customer personas. It’s for this reason that we provide a sliding scale of £2.5k for each component required, or £12k for the full package. Depending on the number of personas required and the scale of the validation requested, this can increase.
How much does a PR plan cost?
You cannot run an effective PR campaign without a PR plan. Once you have a communication strategy you need to activate it. And, for this you will need:
A clear understanding of the competitive media landscape.
A bank of content ideas for each persona, at each stage of the buying cycle.
A plan for what ideas should be executed in what formats (i.e., blogs, thought leadership, case studies, etc).
Editorial calendar research for forward planning (we also create a bespoke distribution list for each client.)
Your spokespeople to be media trained (only if your people will be speaking to the press)
Again, how much it costs will depend on what you already have in place, but realistically allow 6k-10k
How much does a brand awareness campaign cost?
Sticky brand awareness, i.e., brand recall, as opposed to transient brand awareness requires consistent and persistent presence of compelling relevant content in the media that your ideal customer consumes. This is content your ideal customers stop to read or view.
This content needs to be abundant because your ideal customer may not always be online when or where your content appears.
A strong creative theme and provocative event campaigned through a combination of owned and earned media is the ideal way forward – complemented with paid for retargeting ads would be the budgetary equivalent of a cherry on the cake!
Owned media gives you frequency and visibility, triggering the ‘mere exposure effect’ for less time and cost. Earned media gives you credibility and trust through respected, independent 3rd party endorsement – the media.
The cost for this really depends on the scale of the strong creative theme and provocative event – this might be research, a roundtable, a report or something more stunt-oriented. Allow something between £5k-25k.
Regular posting on LinkedIn is an effective way of generating brand visibility, while engaging and commenting will help with brand engagement. Running a company social calendar, creating the content calendar, drafting posts, creating visuals and infographics, inviting connections and commenting can cost between £12k-£36k depending on the level of complexity required.
Regular press outreach to secure earned media coverage for trust and credibility requires a tightly targeted press list, media relations, regular press releases punctuated by case studies and thought leadership. All accompanied by excellent photography. A media campaign of this type will cost you between £36k-£60k.
How much does a thought leadership campaign cost?
A PR thought leadership campaign typically involves several key elements to establish industry expertise, enhance brand reputation, and position key individuals or companies as industry leaders. The execution of a thought leadership campaign will require a combination of the following elements:
Messaging: A bespoke messaging framework for the selected author(s).
Content Creation: Research draft and gain approvals for high-quality and insightful content such as articles, whitepapers, blog posts, research reports, case studies, and opinion pieces.
Media Relations: To build relationships with journalists and media outlets covering the technology industry. Pitch thought leadership content and secure media placements, interviews, or guest contributions for your experts.
Speaking Engagements and Conferences: Identify industry conferences, panels, or speaking opportunities where experts can share their expertise and insights and networking opportunities.
Social Media and Online Presence: Leverage social media platforms to amplify thought leadership content, engage with the community, and share industry insights.
Influencer Relations: Identify and engage with influential figures in the technology industry, such as industry analysts, bloggers, or experts. Collaborate with them on content, seek their endorsements, or involve them in joint thought leadership initiatives.
Thought Leadership Awards and Recognitions: Pursue industry-specific awards or recognitions that acknowledge thought leadership and expertise.
Partnership and Collaboration: Explore opportunities to collaborate with other thought leaders, industry associations, or technology partners for joint initiatives, research projects, or co-authored content.
Measurement and Evaluation: Establish metrics and key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure the success and impact of your thought leadership campaign.
The entry point budget for a thought leadership PR campaign is IRO £40k per annum, the cost for all elements above would be approaching IRO £100k+.
General PR budget advice
Finally, we’ll give the penultimate paragraph to ChatGPT: “The top three factors that significantly influence the cost of a PR program are:
Scope and Complexity: The scope and complexity of the PR program play a crucial role in determining the cost. A comprehensive PR campaign with multiple objectives, target audiences, and media channels will typically involve more time, resources, and effort, resulting in higher costs. For instance, if you require extensive media outreach, strategic messaging development, crisis management planning, and ongoing media monitoring, it will contribute to the overall cost.
Duration and Commitment: The duration and commitment of the PR program affect the cost. PR campaigns can be short-term or long-term endeavors. Short-term projects, such as a specific event or product launch, will generally be less expensive compared to long-term programs that involve continuous brand building, media relations, and reputation management over an extended period. Sustained efforts require ongoing dedication from PR professionals, which can impact the cost.
Expertise and Reputation: The expertise and reputation of the PR professionals or agency you engage with can influence the cost. Highly experienced and reputable PR firms typically charge higher fees due to their track record, industry knowledge, and proven results. Their expertise and established relationships with media outlets can drive up the cost of their services. However, their experience can often yield more effective and impactful PR outcomes.