Enlisting a PR Spokesperson: a Checklist

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If you read our article Build and Protect Your Brand by Media Training a Spokesperson, you understand the importance of this PR strategy. It is also obvious finding the right person for the job is not an easy task.

The first thing that comes to mind is to use an executive team member for this role. When this makes sense, it may be perfect, but it isn’t always the case. If this is not an option and hiring a celebrity is too expensive, you have to look elsewhere for a person who will be capable of representing your brand. This person should be eloquent and engaging. Not necessarily a natural media personality, but definitely someone who doesn’t shy from a camera and is comfortable with public speaking.

This person will represent your brand, and your reputation will largely hinge on their performance. It has to be a fit.

As experienced media relations Toronto PR specialists who have led many successful PR campaigns, PUNCH Canada has compiled this list of criteria for choosing a PR spokesperson for your brand:

  1. Define your brand’s image and voice. The spokesperson should be able to serve as a mirror of the company’s image, what it stands for and where it is going. The brand’s message and voice should sound natural coming from your PR spokesperson.
  2. Take the audience into account. The link between the spokesperson and the audience is imperative for the message to be accepted by your followers and consumers.
  3. Define your budget. A celebrity spokesperson can increase your brand’s impact and revenues, but they don’t come cheap. You can save on this by choosing a company employee for the role, but keep in mind this choice will often require special training and time to establish this person as your PR persona. The audience will need to get familiar with him or her to form an adequate connection and trust.
  4. Research and compare. You might want to consult a Toronto media relations firm such as PUNCH to help you make the decision, but you can also do it yourself. The most extensive checks should be made for third-party candidates, to make sure they don’t have a negative reputation or any engagement with competitors. The ambassador of your brand should be trustworthy and a 100% committed to your brand’s promotion.
  5. Media training. No amount of natural talent makes a person automatically good for the spokesperson role. Seek out someone who has had adequate media training. Charisma and eloquence should be there to begin with, but the ability to deliver consistent on-brand information is an acquired skill.

As a bonus point - take your time. It’s better to make the right decision months from now than the wrong one now. The time it takes to salvage damaged reputation is longer by far.

For professional advice or help in hiring your brand spokesperson, contact PUNCH Canada Managing Partner Jeff Lake at jeff@punchcanada.com to start working with Toronto media relations pros!