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Tangible PR and 2018 - the year it finally becomes the norm



We are now four weeks into 2018 and it’s been a whirlwind already. What is clear is that this year will definitely be one of change all round as technology marches forward, the political landscape evolves, and our very own industry continues to turn everything we know on its head.

 

A few days ago industry title The Drum led with news that advertisers had started to feel the pinch with $10bn worth of media business under review. Is this a lot? Is this the norm? I’m not sure – with the ad budgets of the major brands easily reaching into the millions, perhaps not? But the fact that the media is talking about ‘feeling the pinch’ means we are also talking about it.

 

What is certain in the PR world is that everyone wants more in 2018 – but not necessarily more hours dedicated to their account, rather more certainty that the activity will cut through and deliver a difference. This means measurement is coming to the forefront, finally, and quite right too.  In fact in a recent pitch we spent over half an hour discussing measurement with the prospective client.

 

Article after article debating this issue fills my inbox, to my bemusement. It’s been something that’s been built into Refresh PR’s foundations – we simply don’t propose and run campaigns that can’t show an impact on a business.

 

So, how can PR be measured?

 

It’s not actually as difficult as people make out, for example:

 

Trading online? Then build increased traffic to the website as a key metric. Most of our clients have this as a KPI. We monitor Google Analytics and report back to them on a weekly and monthly basis and are able to demonstrate just how we’ve made a difference.

 

Working with influencers? Measure engagement levels – how many people commented that your brand was great? Give your influencer a sales code to promoted to their network and measure redemption levels

 

Want more people to talk about your brand? Invest a small amount in research to benchmark where you are now, and then again at the end of the campaign. Watch social media and the internet in general carefully to view the increase in brand mentions

 

A good PR strategy

 

Before setting the KPIs, make sure you’re measuring the right thing. Go back to the drawing board and your PR strategy. Who do you want to reach, with what message, by when, and what action do you want them to take? If you are 100% certain of what you want people to do, then focus on this and measure the progress!

 

Analysis is crucial

 

Much like online advertising, thanks to Google Analytics we can measure so much more than ever before, and really understand what our target audiences are doing.  Making sure the PR team is doing this on a weekly basis means that campaigns can be tweaked and readjusted regularly, to ensure the target audiences are consistently being reached, and positively influenced, by the campaign.

 

Which all brings me back to my initial thought when I read the article: $10bn of advertising spend? Put it into PR activity instead!!

 

 

 

 

 

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