Metrics of Impact: Evaluating Corporate PR Effectiveness
It is always difficult to track the effectiveness and impact of a good PR campaign since there can be so many factors that go into it. And yet it is essential for a PR team to effectively measure the results of a good campaign to see if it needs any major changes.
While it is still true that it can be difficult to evaluate the effectiveness of a good strategy, there are some metrics that can help paint a clearer picture. Here is a quick look at some of the metrics of impact that you should look into when evaluating corporate PR.
Possibly one of the most straightforward metrics that you can measure for a corporate PR campaign, seeing the number of sales following a campaign can give you some insight into its effectiveness. Granted, there are a multitude of factors that you will need to overlook when considering sales since surrounding market factors can also lead to an increase. Remember, correlation does not equal causation, so it is anyone’s guess as to why sales increased.
However, by looking at sales in previous years or under similar circumstances, a rise or fall in sales can give you a more accurate image of the campaign’s effectiveness.
Sort, Mid, And Long Term Metrics
Consider short-, mid-, and long-term metrics for a more holistic view of the effectiveness of certain PR. Some teams will hyper-fixate on improving short-term growth without considering how a campaign will fare in the mid and long term. Others can also solely focus on the long run while ignoring their short-term goals.
Good long-term metrics that are worth measuring are NPS search engine search results. Midterm metrics can include conversion rates, backlinks, and domain authority. Finally, in the short term, good metrics worth looking into can include social media followers and organic website traffic.
Relevant Outputs and Outcomes
To get a better look at the effectiveness of your PR campaign, you need to measure both relevant outputs and outcomes. Outputs can be more tangible metrics like views, shares on social media, number of articles published, and audience reach. While these are important metrics that are worth measuring, you will also have to focus on outcomes as well. Measuring outcomes can include measuring web traffic and checking backlinks from high-authority websites. All of these become very effective methods to properly measure the effectiveness of your PR strategy.
Share of Voice
Regardless of which industry you are in or the types of customers that you are targeting, Share of Voice remains one of the most effective ways you can measure the effectiveness of PR campaigns. Along with using it to measure the effectiveness of your public relations program, it is also important to see how well you have fared against your competitors in the market.
Since SOV can so effectively tell you so much about your business’s PR plan in such little time, understanding it allows you to easily readjust the trajectory of any current plans that you might have.
Website Traffic Analytics
While this is not always the most important metric to measure for success, any PR campaign should result in even a small increase in traffic to your website. However, if you have a campaign dedicated to increasing traffic to your website, then this is obviously an important metric to measure. You should look into where visitors peaked and what contributed to that sharp increase. You need to see if you can recreate a similar spike by recreating the conditions around it.
Tracking website traffic, especially for an online store, is essential, but it is also important to check the click-through rate of all visitors as well.
Online Corporate Reputation
Possibly one of the most overlooked aspects of any PR campaign, online corporate reputation can be the most difficult metric to measure. But along with being more difficult to measure, it is also essential to the overall growth of a company, as a failing reputation makes it hard for customers to trust a firm. And with falling trust, companies can also see their sales and revenue drop as well.
Another important reason to measure this specific metric is that it shows you how well people are responding to your message online. This can allow for a more personal connection with customers.
Online Impressions from Customers
Another important metric worth looking into is the impressions of customers online. These online impressions focus on how well certain customers are responding to your message, especially following a wave of backlash. In fact, social media likes, comments, and retweets are essential to track when looking into the effectiveness of your PR campaign.
If the impressions from customers are not as favorable as you wanted, you can then move on to make changes to it according to feedback. This can also result in a good feedback loop where customers feel respected and heard.
The Possible Click through Rate
A higher click-through rate is essential to track when measuring the success of a PR campaign. Not only do you want to educate your visitors, but you also want to see how many of them are willing to follow through on a call to action. This metric offers quantifiable information about how many people were either convinced to follow through or had found what they were looking for.
This can also help you determine which of your links you should spread out more in the form of backlinks. Now, you can see the number of visitors coming into your service increase by placing the right links on the right websites.
Trying to determine the success of a PR campaign can be complicated, as there are many moving parts to it. And yet, these metrics make it a lot easier for the PR team to check the success of any campaigns that they have put into motion. If it is not performing as well as they had hoped, then they can tweak and rework it until it offers the results they want.