Media coverage is an extremely powerful tool for companies to leverage to become an industry leader in your space. But how do you know if your public relations efforts are working?

Below we share six ways you can generate measurable ROI with PR.

1. Do You Have Clear Goals for Your PR?

Running an effective PR campaign with measurable ROI is like preparing for a marathon. Before you can start training for a marathon, you must have a clear vision of what you want to achieve. For some people, their goal is to challenge their personal limits. For others, it’s to get healthier or to raise funds for a cause.

Similarly, when running a PR campaign with measurable ROI, you first need to be clear on what it is you want to accomplish. A goal must be specific, measurable and have a deadline. Vague goals produce vague results. A clear goal follows the SMART formula, which stands for stands for Specific, Measurable, Actionable, Realistic and Time-based.

If it does not meet this standard, revise it until it does. Examples of clear objectives include:

“To increase trials of product A in the B community”

“To drive sales of product X by Y amount”

“To reposition the brand as C, rather than Y.”  

Clear objectives will allow you to effectively evaluate how your campaign performed against your initial objectives.

2. Develop KPI’s

After setting your goals, the next step is to establish your key performance indicators (KPI’s).  These are the metrics you will use to measure your daily and weekly progress towards your goals.

Your KPI’s will often be actions you’ll take and the outcomes of those actions. Examples of KPI’s you’ll measure during your campaign could be:

  • How many reporters you’ll reach out to each day about your campaign.
  • The amount of web traffic you need to generate from news coverage in order to reach a revenue goal.
  • The amount of new social media followers you are acquiring as a result of a campaign.
  • The quantity of social media mentions you are receiving.

Once you have determined your KPIs, make sure to consistently monitor how the campaign is performing against them and react accordingly. If your KPI’s are set up correctly, each increase in one of these metrics will be moving you closer to your campaign goal.

3. Conduct Media Outreach

Now that you have established your goal, objectives and KPIs, it is time to begin your media outreach in an organized manner. Create a pitch to send via email to reporters and producers who cover your niche.

One effective way to research which media contacts to send your pitch to is using LinkedIn.

  • Search for reporters who work at a given publication.
  • Then visit their profile page at their publication to read their past work.
  • Look at the articles they’ve recently written to be sure what you are pitching is relevant. Editors don’t like press releases or content that advertises products. They want content that has relevance to their coverage area and offers value to their audiences.
  • What value and relevance does your content provide to their readers?

Check out our free video training on media outreach for more about the process we use.

4. Deploy Pull-Through Marketing

If you have been successful in securing media coverage, congratulations! Your job is not yet complete. We call the process of maximizing the value from your media coverage “pull-through marketing”. What this simply means is leveraging all of your other marketing channels to promote your media coverage piece and maximize its reach.

Here are a few suggestions for maximizing the reach of your media placement:

  • Send the media placement to your email list and encourage your readers and customers to read and share the article.
  • Promote the media coverage on all of your social media channels and reach out to other influencers in your niche who may be interested in doing the same.
  • Publish a blog post on your own website announcing that you have been featured in the media and linking back to the coverage.

5. Boost Your Reach with Paid Social

If you would like to take your pull-through marketing a step further to increase your reach, consider social media advertising.

Facebook ads promoting your media placement are one of the most effective ways for inexpensively driving as much attention as possible.

  • Create a new ad that features a link to your media coverage and ad copy promoting that your brand was featured and some of the insight from the story.
  • Target the ad to both your current followers and new audiences.
  • Test and re-test variations of your ads to different audiences and scale the ad that drives the best results.

6. Measure & Repeat

All campaigns are scaled and improved through measurement and testing. Be sure to record the results that are generated from your media coverage and see how it impacts the bottom line of your business.

With this information in hand, launch your next media outreach campaign and strive for increased results. And if you don’t see major results from the very first time you do media outreach, do not stress.

It often takes testing and re-testing to find your groove and dial in the most effective messaging that generates powerful publicity for your business. Our media strategists can help you reduce the learning curve. We’ll work with you to develop a PR strategy using our proven outreach process. You can learn more about that here.

Want our playbook?

We have spent ten years developing a proven process for generating media coverage. Connect with us here for help with putting together your own PR strategy.


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