Difficult Client? Here’s Exactly How to Handle Them

For the most part, PR pros love their clients and probably spend more time with them than they do their family. A PR agency should act as an extension of the client’s team. However, there are times when you have a client who requires a little more attention…

Set Expectations

You are the expert, so it’s important as a PR professional that you set and manage the client’s expectations. Be clear in what you can deliver and define limitations you may see as an inhibitor.


Clients are sometimes looking for immediate results, which doesn’t happen. It can take three months before a client sees results due to the editorial calendar alone. Anticipate their questions and keep them informed of what you are doing behind the scenes for them. Initiating weekly meetings, reports and/or calls can be helpful and comforting to them.


Let your client communicate their feelings and thoughts, and listen to them. You don’t have to agree with their concerns, but it is important to acknowledge them. Once you have heard their viewpoint, you can address their concerns and take charge of the situation. Ultimately, you want to find a solution you can both agree on.

However, do not let a client dictate how you do your job. Once again, you are the expert and you know how to get results.

Parting Ways

If you can’t find a solution or middle ground to create a positive working relationship, it might be time to part ways. If this client is taking too much time away from your other clients, it will be overall beneficial to your agency to let this one go and focus on the clients who respect your work.