Carve Communications CEO and founder David Barkoe tells Doug Simon that the key to building "a sustainable model of PR" is "to look beyond just the big hit on the press release or the big announcement and focus on long-term campaigns and long-term opportunities to create ongoing awareness."

Barkoe says that "it's great to have the arrow go up, as we all know, but that lasts for two or three days. So, really focus on how you can sustain that awareness over time."

Creating sustinable awareness, he says, takes more than just relying on a press release. "You really have to develop value propositions. You have to look at the problems your clients are solving for their customers that might not always be sales focused."

He also says to avoid capitalizing on "the hot topic of the day. It doesn't always pay to try to glom your client on to that trend. It's really got to be relevant because it can either end up badly because it's so irrelevant for your client or it's just going to be a dud."

Another key strategy is to help brands come up with ideas or data that they can own. "We always find you really have to work closely with the client to really tightly determine what that POV is, what that data point is, and then is it relevant?"

How to determine the value of media hits also comes up for discussion. "We look at things like what tier of media is that placement? And are all some or none of the messages our client wants to get across in that article? Or does it just say their brand name? Is it positive, negative, or neutral?"

As regards employee retention, Barkoe says that at Carve, "we don't hire just to fill a hole. We hire people with purpose to fill a need that we have and based on a skill set that they have that we need to fill versus just filling a chair or filling a zoom square as we work virtually."

He also stresses the importance of trusting employees from the start. "We hire them because we trust them from the interview process, not for them to earn our trust over six months."

Finally, Barkoe says, it's essential to let employees "dictate how the workflows should be, whether it's all virtual, some hybrid, or all in-person. We really give them that power."

View all of the interviews in the “PR's Top Pros Talk” series. Subscribe to get notified when new episodes are available.

Interested in taking part? Contact Doug Simon at [email protected]

D S Simon Media helps clients get their stories on television through satellite media tours and by producing and distributing content to the media. The company also produces live social media events.