Hiring a good spokesperson can be beneficial when you’re building the company’s profile, but it takes time, money and research to find the right person. Using an executive team member doesn’t always make sense and high profile celebrities can be too expensive. What you’re really looking for is someone who is interested in representing your brand. Someone who is articulate and engaging. Someone who demonstrates enthusiasm for your business. You’re putting your company’s reputation into someone else’s hands and you want to ensure that it’s the right fit. Strategic Objectives has lots of experience in choosing the perfect PR spokesperson for our clients' brands. We’ve worked with Nia Vardalos for the Special K Revolution campaign, Matt Philips for Pringles Tortillas Great DIPbate, and Doug Gilmour and Darcy Tucker for Shoeless Joes. Here is your essential checklist for choosing your company’s spokesperson:

  1. Know your brand. A good spokesperson will mirror your company’s image and values so it’s important that you understand your brand’s tone and voice. What’s the most important point you want your spokesperson to share and how do you want it to be communicated?
  2. Understand your audience. Know who you’re speaking to. The partnership between your brand and spokesperson needs to makes sense. It should be genuine and credible so that your audience feels connected and motivated to act (i.e. buy more of your product!).
  3. Determine your budget. When engaged appropriately, celebrity spokespeople can significantly increase a program’s impact, but they often come with a high price tag. Alternatively, using a company employee as a spokesperson is a budget-friendly option but might require a significant time commitment. Third-party, credible spokespeople are available to fit any program’s needs, so set your budget before beginning your search.
  4. Research.  Make sure you triple check your potential spokesperson’s background to ensure they’re not in conflict with your product/cause. Do your research and make sure they’re not already working with a competitor or have a negative reputation. Your spokesperson will be an ambassador for your brand and finding someone with a personal connection to your company/cause might be beneficial. At a minimum, your spokesperson should relate to your company and its products or services. Also, find out if your spokesperson has already participated in media training. Message training is critical to ensure your spokesperson delivers consistent, on-brand information.

Hiring a spokesperson for your company is a great way to generate key-message driven media coverage, engage with consumers, and hopefully, influence perceptions and behaviours. The most important factors to consider when searching for a spokesperson are ensuring the person really wants to represent your company and finding someone who will work collaboratively with you to achieve your business objectives. With patience and perseverance, you can find the right fit. If you’re looking for a PR agency that has proven results in choosing the perfect PR spokesperson, you should get in contact with us — we’d LOVE to help!

Written by Adriana Lurz, Vice President at Strategic Objectives.