Those are fighting words.  I am annoyed with the writers in the marketplace who are claiming to be publicists, taking client dollars, and delivering disappointment in the media results department.

Last month, I met a business owner who invested serious money in a PR campaign, and he lamented that he still didn't know what he got in exchange for his investment.  Stories like that are disheartening.

With economic times as challenging as they are, writers are claiming to be all things to all people in order to earn your business.  Your lasting business success depends on you making wise choices with your dream team. Due diligence on your part will ensure that publicity services you outsource deliver the results you need and deserve.  In these demanding times, anything less is simply not good enough.

If you are serious about getting seen, heard, and celebrated in the media through the power of publicity, every move you make and dollar you invest needs to contribute to and deliver accurate, compelling, and prominent media coverage in the outlets that are a perfect fit to serve your ideal customers and your unfolding business success.

Before you hire anyone to write a press release for you or launch a media relations campaign on your behalf, ask to see specific media results that have flowed from press release writing and media relations efforts in the past.  Prior results are an excellent indicator of future success.

“Google” the publicist's name to see how often it comes up in a search in connection with press releases he/she has issued to the media.  If your search comes up empty, pause and consider if this individual is really the best available talent for the job.

Ask your potential publicist about his/her passion for publicity and the business you are in.  If the temperature reads lukewarm, proceed with caution.

And, if you are on track to spend serious money for public relations services and are dissatisfied with the results, dismayed by the process, and unclear about the value, stop the train and get off. As you get your bearings and prepare to move ahead, remember this. Not every writer is a results-generating publicist.