The beginning of the New Year is the perfect time for many PR agencies to consider the changes that have taken place in the world around us, and arrive at a renewed growth strategy to move forward.

Today’s public relations professionals are charged with far more than ever before. To help you keep up, the team at NRPR has put together five things you can do to help ensure success in 2022:

Develop Relationships with Your Team, Clients, and Media

The first step is to find better ways to connect and communicate with your team. Studies have confirmed that effective communication positively affects employee productivity and trust. In fact, according to a McKinsey report, well-connected teams saw their productivity increase by 20-25%.

Considering the challenges of remote work, platforms like Slack have proven to be a great supplement to Zoom and regular email to help socially distanced teams stay more connected. With Slack one can choose to communicate with either individuals or groups in real-time. This enables better collaborations in real-time and can help foster better relationships between your employees.

Alongside your team, it is important to connect and stay in touch with your clients and the media. In fact, for many the very definition of public relations should be updated to mean public relationships, yet many don’t make time for this anymore. For example, it is standard practice for PR professionals to maintain a relationship with journalists over email, yet only 47% meet in person. While it may feel time-consuming, this level of investment can help establish life-long relationships that bring media opportunities to your doorstep for clients and journalists alike.

Help Your Clients Become Thought Leaders

 An important strategy to help your agency grow involves increasing the visibility of your clients as thought leaders in their fields. A study by LinkedIn indicated that more than half (55%) of business decision-makers said they had increased the business they do with an organization based on their thought leadership. 

If executives are well-versed in the latest trends and news driving their industries, communicating their commentary or opinion in a way that interests their target audience can elevate them as an authority. The key with thought leadership content is that it can’t be general. Instead, work with your client to help them unearth a specific specialty or set of experiences that set them apart. 

Suppose your clients have had a long career in influencer marketing, for example, and can speak from a position of experience. That is something valuable to leverage in developing personas that speak to what audiences need. To stand out using this strategy, the thought leader must have a unique message that addresses an audience’s unmet needs or questions and ensures that it resonates with readers, viewers, or listeners.

Stay on Top of the Latest Trends/Technology

The tech world is continually evolving, affecting every industry, and PR is no exception. With new, emerging trends, keeping up-to-date can be tricky. Some helpful digital resources that can help you identify new technologies are many of the media outlets that you may already be working with.

A good one is Thoughtworks Tech Radar. Here, you can find profiles on companies within the tech industry as well as case studies on current technologies, those that are about to debut or are still in early adoption. Other great publications include TechCrunch and Recode. Relevant video content from Two Minute Papers, The Verge, and WIRED is another way to stay informed.

Your own clients may already be a network of industry experts you can turn to for guidance. Your account managers can also help everyone stay current with technology. Many are constantly involved in reading and understanding how your clients’ technologies can be implemented in real-life solutions and situations. Scheduling brainstorming and team discussions can not only help you understand a client better, but also how their technology can potentially be of help to the agency. Also motivate your team members to read up more on the latest emerging technology trends.

Professional Development

To give your agency the edge, the value of professional development for your employees cannot be overstated. Those at the top could benefit from this as well, even if the time investment is only a few hours per week.

One way is to earn related or relevant online certificates. There are a number of programs out there, including Coursera, that offer professional programs that allow you to build industry-specific skills beyond what you may have learned through formal education.

If enrolling in a certificate or degree program is too time-consuming, a la carte coursework may be another option, allowing you to fold your continuing education into your busy life.

Volunteering to speak at conferences or even hosting a podcast can help you develop your public speaking ability in real-time. Plus, it gives you a way to continue your thought leadership efforts to trumpet your unique perspective on your industry.

Create a Feedback Loop

 Listening to the feedback of employees, clients, and media members can help the agency continue to improve its processes, from pitching to managing client communication. When it comes to soliciting feedback from employees, this could take the form of one-on-one meetings on a weekly, quarterly, and yearly basis. Gathering employee feedback is valuable because you can use it to improve your firm’s overall culture, which can make employees more satisfied and productive.  

Obtaining client and media feedback can be a little trickier, especially since there is no incentive from outlets to communicate on how one comes across. There are more involved ways to obtain this information. One way is to leverage your podcast to focus on interviewing industry-leading journalists who, in a more objective, relaxed environment, could share some of their experiences in a way that doesn’t feel too personal or emotional. Mentors can also be a source of feedback on a more individual level.


While thinking about an improvement action plan for your agency this year, make sure you involve everyone — including your employees, clients, and media contacts. Here are the summarized steps to do this effectively:

  • Improve communication with them.
  • Develop your clients into thought leaders.
  • Stay up to date with and make good use of the latest technology.
  • Explore knowledge resources for you and your team.
  • Finally, solicit feedback from all parties involved, and use it to your benefit.

Integrating these tips may not be an easy task today, but we here at NRPR have found these approaches pay tremendous dividends in the long-term. Here’s to a prosperous 2022!