Tag: public relation

MEASURING THE IMPACT AND VALUE OF PR

PR is driven by helping brands and businesses create a positive perception among the public. Although there is no definitive metric to measure the success of a pr campaign, the overarching aim is to not only reach the largest audience possible but convert this interest into new business opportunities.

As a PR professional, I’m well aware of the long-term results and transformative impact that PR can have on businesses large and small. But as we are living in an increasingly data-driven world, there is a growing demand to see the immediate impact of PR and how this can be evaluated as a positive return on investment.

Therefore, the ability to demonstrate the value and effectiveness of PR has never been so important.

With a plethora of data analytical tools to use at our disposal, the way PR professionals evaluate the results of their work has gone through an evolution in recent years. But due to the multi-faceted nature of public relations campaigns, this is far from a black and white process.

As one PR brief and completely differ from the next, it is important that any metric or data pertaining to the impact of a campaign is given concise context and aligned with the business’ wider goals. This is where the true value of PR can be measured against a return on investment.

Here at Open Comms, we work with a wide-ranging client base that operate in very different industries. As such, we ensure that our results are given context, backed up by evidence and correspond with our clients’ wider objectives.

From my own insight and experience, I will share two critical methods that can reflect the success of a PR campaign.

Media coverage:

Whether it’s national, regional or trade press, obtaining media coverage is arguably the most effective way to garner the most attention of a business or brand. As news can now be accessed instantly by any person holding a smart phone, computer or any similar device, securing media coverage can potentially reach audiences across the globe.

Once a business has hit the headlines, it provides them with the credibility and legitimacy to build a positive reputation. This can then be leveraged as a platform to engage with the public and ultimately help businesses promote themselves within the marketplace.

UNDERSTANDING THE VALUE OF DIGITAL MEDIA

The true impact of securing media coverage, however, can only be realised if it is consistent. Once a business is regularly featured in newspapers, online publications, or even broadcast and radio, it will be viewed as a trusted and reliable source.

Once this has been established, media coverage must be utilised as an effective marketing tool to impact on consumer behaviour and attract new business opportunities.

So, put simply: the more media coverage secured, the bigger the audience is reached.

Social media:

There is no denying that the role of social media within the marketplace is critical. The influence of platforms such as Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram, has completely transformed how businesses are marketed.

With social media holding so much significance to the overall success of a business, a social media strategy now forms a critical part of any PR campaign.

Each channel provides existing and new customers the opportunity to directly engage with brands and businesses anywhere at any time. That being said, it also gives businesses direct access to communicate with their customer base as well.

THE POWER OF PERSONALISING SOCIAL MEDIA CHANNELS 

Transforming these exchanges turn into positive experiences, however, is solely reliant on the content being shared. Whether it’s promoting a new product, service, announcing a company update or commenting on a topical trend, the content must capture and maintain the user’s attention.

Aside from monitoring an increase in followers and engagement, much more data can be extracted and analysed to showcase the value of social media. As part of the PR campaign, we can determine the peak time of visitors to the platforms, where they are located and what pieces of content are garnering the most attention.

Compiling this information is critical to forming a complete picture of how social media channels can be best used to support the wider ambitious of a business or brand. Once these platforms are being used in a purposeful and strategic way, tangible results will be generated and clearly show the value to the return on investment.

More than just a PR agency

We often say to the businesses that we meet that we are more than just a PR agency but this can be difficult to substantiate. It doesn’t mean that we are professing to be a full service agency – we aren’t – we are specialists in PR but we also make recommendations that we feel will add value to the brands we work with even if this falls outside of our typical remit.

Ok, so again, what does that mean? Well, as an example, last weekend I had the absolute pleasure of spending an evening with 192 seriously ill and disabled children. As the PR agency for POM-BEAR we were contacted by the team from Dreamflight, a charity that takes poorly children on the trip of a lifetime.

At a cost of almost £750,000, the team fundraise throughout the year before chartering a Boeing 747, which then takes the children all aged between 8 and 14, along with a team of volunteers and medical experts, to Orlando in Florida.

Initially the team were just requesting snacks, and as an agency that deals with many food clients we are used to these calls. We always make a judgement and put forward our recommendations to the client to provide a rationale for offering free products. In this instance, it seemed to make perfect sense – it was a party setting and as POM-BEAR are gluten free, suitable for vegetarians and have no artificial flavours or colours it was a treat that many of the children could enjoy.

In addition to offering snacks we also suggested that POM-BEAR make an extra special guest appearance to add some more magic to the pre-flight party, which took place at the Renaissance Hotel in Heathrow. So that’s what we did. From 6pm – 9pm POM-BEAR danced, ‘high fived’ and hugged as many children as he was able to. It was a little warm for him at times but he certainly got into the spirit and was even handed a glow stick by one of the children – an honour in deed.

I have to admit that I was a little nervous before joining the team at Dreamflight. I was concerned that I may get upset, on the basis that the children are seriously ill and disabled, but the look on their faces said it all – they were absolutely delighted to meet with POM-BEAR and to have him come along and join in at their party, and who was I to start blubbing – they certainly weren’t.

It was a fantastic event and I can’t reiterate enough how much work and effort clearly goes into this event. As a PR agency we do provide recommendations on sponsorship, brand buddying and product donation and this is one activity that I would happily be involved with again and again.

The children have now set off on their once in a lifetime trip to America and I hope that they have an absolutely fantastic time – each and every one of them truly deserves it.