Monica Rohleder is the president and co-founder of Signal Rock (SR) Communications, a marketing and public relations firm that helps clients build brand awareness in the global community.
(Photo courtesy of Monica Rohleder)
You describe yourself as a cheerleader for your clients. What does that entail?
It is funny, I have always been a cheerleader for friends, family, cities I lived in, schools and now my clients. I am genuinely a passionate person, so when I like something or get excited about something, I love to share the news and tell everyone I know about it. So it was a natural role for me to take helping my clients shape their story, and then share it with the world. I tend to work with smaller organizations and businesses who want to be heard. I am happy to fill that role of communicator and cheerleader, touting all the good and positive things that my clients do to as many people who will listen.
What should a small company look for in hiring a marketing company?
- Honesty. I think it is so important to work with marketers who are honest and will do the best work possible without over-promising and over-charging. If someone is guaranteeing press coverage or assuring you that people will love you, be wary — no one can promise those things.
- Connection. Working relationships are just like personal relationships in the fact that there has to be a seamless connection between the organization and the agency they hire; there has to be a chemistry. Make sure you hire an organization that has the same philosophies as you and the same vision. This helps to ensure that the developed marketing strategy meets your needs and suits the agency’s abilities.
- Strategic know-how. Creativity is truly important, but you want a marketing firm that can see the big picture and ensure the program you implement answers all the potential issues and questions. It is fine to be able to create a good ad or get an article in the World Street Journal, but there is so much more that goes into a marketing plan, and the right firm needs to understand that. And smaller companies need to think about their marketing plans for the long haul, not just immediate gratification. Building a brand takes time. Hiring a firm that understand this is smart.
- Partnership. When we work with clients, we always say we are an extension of their team, not just a vendor. Look for a company that wants to be your partner, and you both will succeed together.
This article was written by Robin D. Everson of Examiner.com for CBS Small Business Pulse.