The top pressure points facing PR teams haven’t changed too much in spite of the turn toward digital communication in the past few decades. In a previous post, we highlighted the fact that it’s increasingly important to demonstrate a clear link between your PR efforts and your main objective – whether that’s franchise development, customer sales or consumer engagement.
In fact, data from Aberdeen Research found that 44 percent of PR pros in B2B industries said they still feel pressure to increase brand recognition and build brand credibility in specific markets in the face of competitors. However, 35 percent also indicated that they have a lack of visibility into public sentiment with respect to a business and its products or services.
Your franchise depends on PR to achieve defined goals, which we typically call key performance indicators. Decision-makers rely on these KPIs to ensure they’re on the right track with their strategies. They also allow PR professionals to discover areas that need to be adjusted and tie individual campaigns to a bottom-line dollar figure. This ultimately allows them to figure out where to allocate the budget.
With the existing resources available to PR pros, it’s not acceptable to simply claim, “Well, a lot of people saw the TV segment.” The social sphere of influence gives you the chance to amplify your results through channels like Facebook, LinkedIn, and other networking sites. And with these resources, you have the chance to see how far your reach goes.
Being Conversant in Social Analytics
Many social media channels have analytics features already built in. For instance, Twitter will give you a month over month breakdown of the number of:
- Profile visits
- New followers
You’re also able to track how many times a particular tweet has been shared and who shared it. Similarly, Facebook shows you when people visit your page, how they engage with content and how you compare to competitors. So, you’re able to track the effect of a specific post on social networks or the cumulative impact of a strategic PR campaign.
For instance, the brand recognition and third-party validation of a broadcast news TV segment go beyond generating consumer interest. They can be applied to a franchise development campaign. By embedding the segment on your franchise Facebook page or YouTube channel, you’ll see which of your followers are interacting with the video. You also have the chance to capture qualified leads using a call to action at the end of the video. This motivates viewers to further investigate the investment opportunity by signing up for a content download or e-newsletter.
Where We’re Headed with PR
Integrated PR and marketing campaigns are a must in today’s results-driven world. You not only need to put a rock-solid strategy in place and implement it—you must also prove that it’s working. The tools already exist; it’s just a matter of putting them into practice.
Next week, we’ll discuss the role Google Analytics plays in measuring the value of PR.
For more information about our integrated PR and marketing strategies, contact us…