PR Agency Vs. In House



Nov 14, 2018

Read Time

min read


Nov 14, 2018

Read Time

min read

Jump to:

Experience & Creativity PR Budget Lateral Thinking Capabilities Able to Advise Focus Connections Cost

It is perhaps one of the most common questions we are asked. Should I go the in-house route or use a consultancy? It’s pretty obvious why you might go the DIY route. Hiring your very own 100% committed member of staff seems a no-brainer. It seems cheaper and it’s easier to monitor what someone is doing when they are based in your company, and there are no confidentiality issues to worry about. The person will also be on tap, there at a moment’s notice. So why might you give up such economy and control, and use an agency? Here’s why…

Experience & Creativity

With a PR agency you have the opportunity to draw on the thinking, and inspiration of a number of people not just one. In a good agency, these people will be at the peak of their PR game, many of them far more experienced than the person you can afford to employ in-house.

PR Budget

If you are going the agency route you will be buying the time of good quality, experienced people. You will pay significantly for their services. However if a prospective agency appears much more interested in your PR budget than your business, alarm bells should be ringing as their priorities are all wrong!


Need a hand with your PR?

Lateral Thinking

An agency, because they are handling a mix of companies, will come across a broader range of new ideas, opportunities and media. This isn’t a criticism of your in-house person, they will just not be exposed to such a mixture if they are purely focused, day-in-day-out, on your business.


You need your PR agency to be capable of deploying any of the communications tools at their disposal. You want all the skills under one roof – and we’d argue in the hands of the people who will be looking after your account. If your day-to-day team can’t do social or digital media and doesn’t understand PR’s impact on SEO they are not good enough for you.

Able to Advise

The senior team in a company is much more likely to take the advice of an agency because they are paying for it. They are more likely to share their vision and business plan with the PR agency, ensuring the PR campaign is closely aligned to the company’s commercial trajectory. An in-house person, because they are within the hierarchical structure of their company, will often sadly not command the same respect, or receive the same candour from or access to the company’s directors.

people working on laptops and smiling
  • people working on laptops and smiling


If a company isn’t careful, the in-house person can be seen as a ‘spare pair of hands’ and become overloaded with ‘other’ non-PR tasks. This massively dilutes the focus and pace of the PR campaign. Whereas with an agency there will be no such diversions.


In our time we’ve introduced clients to potential business partners, investors, distributors, customers and so forth. This is because we are able to be ‘out there’ mixing with all sorts of people from different areas of business. That’s what good agencies can do – and it’s a brilliant tool for clients to harness.


A swift glance a PR job sites such as The Guardian, PR Week and Marketing Week will tell you that a good in house PR person isn’t cheap. That’s before you add to their salary national insurance, pension and other perks. Plus if you are going the in-house route you will also need to buy in resources for them to use such as media monitoring services from companies such as Cision, plus media database tools like Gorkana. Suddenly the cost of a PR agency doesn’t seem such a big part of the equation.

Of course, we are not discounting the internal PR route all together. There are plenty of great PR people working in companies, and we are by no means diminishing what they do. They are a tremendous asset. Indeed no agency can work in isolation; to be working at its peak a PR agency needs to be interacting with a person within the client company who ‘gets’ PR. As Catherine Bayles, Head of Media Relations at Eurostar recently argued in this article the agency works at its best when it’s in partnership with the client. Equally there are plenty of terrible PR agencies that don’t deliver and that don’t deserve your attention.

However, to simply view the PR Agency vs in-house debate as a matter of budget is to not understand the potential of a really great agency.

If you are reviewing your PR why not call me, Louise on T: 01993 82311 or E:


Discover why top brands trust us

From transforming businesses to achieving remarkable results, our agency has earned the trust and admiration of our clients.

  • My Nametags has worked with Energy PR for years, and they keep delivering excellent PR work for us

    They do a great job in coming up with good ideas and executing them. My Nametags is trying to reach parents and consumers, and we have had articles and coverage on BBC, ITV, Sky, BBC Radio, Sun, Express and Mirror to mention some.

    - Lars B Andersen | CEO

    child smiling
  • By far the best thing we’ve done

    It’s taken our practice in the sector to a whole other level and prompted concrete business opportunities. So many people I speak to have seen the report. We’re now automatically recognised and come to as specialists in this area – which is fantastic.

    - Liz Sparrow | Partner, Science and Tech Lead

    two cranes
  • They have exceeded our expectations in helping us promote our show

    Energy PR have been an absolute pleasure to work with. They are enthusiastic, incredibly polite and are always prompt in response. They secured us bigger coverage of our show than we could have imagined and would highly recommend any company to use them.

    - Amber Capon | Marketing Executive

    swimming pool by the sea
  • We see them as our 'trusted advisers'

    We look forward to their ideas and creativity around the areas that we are looking to focus on.

    The ‘Digging Up Britain’ reports that they created are an industry first and testament to their approach.

    - Richard Broome | Managing Director

  • Comprehensive and thorough understanding of our business, vision and objectives

    I have been working with Energy PR for the best part of a decade. Over that time, Energy have developed a comprehensive and thorough understanding of our business, vision and objectives. This enables them to come up with relevant, tailored messaging and campaigns for each of the audiences that we target.

    - Alexandra Giles-Brown | Head of Marketing

    A house gable end with Origin bifold doors
  • I have been blown away

    Since Energy PR has been managing our socials, the level of interaction, from quality leads, has been unbelievable. Being able to build my personal presence online, whilst also generating new business leads has been eye opening. I am more excited than ever to see what magic Team Energy can sprinkle over my account, and the Crossflow company account, as we move forward.

    - Rebecca White | Commercial Director

    cow with crossflow turbine

We're always interested in a new PR challenge

People dancing
white house with swimming pool and palm trees
colourful painting