What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?
For much of the time, they’ve just gotten us set up for campaigns, events, or whatever it is that we’re doing. I don’t have any metrics, but what I can say is that we’ve continued to work toward modernizing our look, and PRI has been up to that challenge. As we’re trying to move our business lines forward and be more modern, they’ve shown that they’re continuing to learn new things. Although it’s the same people that we’ve been working with for a long time, we’re continuing to change the way we do marketing. I’m not sure I can speak to performance in a quantitative way. All I can say is that we’ve continued to feel that their output is solid and that they’re a trustworthy, reliable firm.
We’ve been really happy so far on this project. I’m very impressed with the design work I’ve seen. We weren’t looking for anything quite as fancy with this website, so we felt that their safe approach would work, based on what we’d seen. We’ve actually been surprised to see that PRI had moved the needle more than what we thought they would, in terms of taking us to that next step. We’ve been very happy with them so far.
How did PRI perform from a project management standpoint?
They use Teamwork as task management software. I don’t love it, but it’s better than nothing. We use Asana in-house, and I keep thinking that I should talk to PRI about getting them on our platform. I know that it’s what they use for all their clients, so it’s an easy way for them to manage it. Most of our communications are online. As soon as someone adds an update to whatever project thread they’re in, we’ll get an email notifying us that they’ve reached out and that there’s something we need to do on our end. That’s helpful for keeping things organized, especially with projects like a website relaunch.
I have quarterly calls with Matt and Chintan, and we otherwise have calls on an as-needed basis. I’ve found it very helpful to have calls during this recent project. It’s a way to regroup and talk through general issues or to make sure that they’re clear on what we’re trying to achieve in terms of a look or requirement on the compliance side. We’ve had more calls recently, and we found those to be very helpful.
It’s been a long time, and the relationship has morphed in a lot of different ways. They’re willing to jump in on whatever it is we need. We used to have a much higher budget with them, but, given the way our business lines have changed, and how our marketing team has changed internally, we’ve scaled back from what it used to be. It’s still pretty significant, and PRI is still our go-to outsourced marketing team.
What did you find most impressive about them?
I feel that they’re very trustworthy and that they’ve got our back. We’ve worked with a few other vendors, including the one I mentioned, where we ended up going in another direction. There was another site I wasn’t involved with where we ended up hiring someone else, but we didn’t feel they offered the same kind of service as PRI. We had a website crash, and the vendor dragged feet to get it back up and running, to figure out the issue and make sure it didn’t happen again. We’ve never experienced that with PRI. They’re very dependable, and they’ll get online after hours or on weekends if we need them to.
Are there any areas they could improve?
On the project management side, although I feel it’s been positive in their most recent project, there’s probably more to be done in terms of setting up regular check-ins and having someone there to make sure we’re happy and to talk through opportunities. One thing I’ve been surprised by is that they haven’t taken it upon themselves to suggest new things. They kind of wait for us to do it, and it feels like, even if we were to shut down a couple of ideas, it would still be an opportunity for them to highlight areas that need improvement. The project manager sometimes helps with that process.
They did try to bring someone in once, maybe 4–5 years ago, and we weren’t that impressed with her so that kind of went away. I think it’s an area where they could step up: having someone solid who really understands the relationship. I don’t mean to take anything away from them, because I do feel they’ve done a pretty nice job of it. It’s more the aspect of checking in to see what our key goals for the year are, and what is it what we could be doing more of. That’s one area I’ve not seen a lot from them on. They’ve rather been more responsive to our requests.
Do you have any advice for future clients of theirs?
Clients should make the relationship known early on. If they want PRI to be advice-givers and recommenders, they should tell them that. If the client just wants a firm that they can trust and rely on for standard updates, PRI is going to be a great fit. If the client wants to really push the boundaries and have someone who will tell them what they should be doing next, I think they need to ask for that.