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The Value of PR

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Public Relations has existed for many years as a profession unjustly shrouded in mystery and misrepresentation. The truth is, PR Practitioners aren’t flacks, they aren’t spin doctors, and they do a lot more than just mass distribute press releases every single day. PR has the unmatched ability to positively influence brand awareness, perceptions and reputations in a way that builds powerful brand equity while also serving public good. How can you beat that?

Sure, difficulties arise because PR is not an easily quantifiable tactic, making it hard to measure its ROI.  And we know that tangible data makes for a much easier “sell”. But, PR practitioners do have more methods of quantifying results for their clients with the use of Google Alerts and sentiment/insight tools.   You can also take the time to measure attitudes using focus groups and surveys, but another important way to analyze PR dollars is to compare publicity placement to advertising placement and assign a value accordingly.

For example, consider this hypothetical scenario:  Your company donates a salad bar as part of the Let’s Move Salad Bars to Schools campaign.  As a result of your donation, you are recognized in an industry trade publication in a half page placement. Paid advertising of this size could be a substantial expenditure. If you were mentioned multiple times AND had color photos representing your brand or company in an editorial, the cost would go up even more for that same space in advertising!

When you factor in the value of these types of mentions beyond what advertising space can do for you, the worth increases. As audiences are increasingly inundated with marketing and advertising messages, having positive press and mentions from third parties will make a big difference in influencing key audiences about your brand. The ultimate goal of PR is to further amplify your core message and positioning beyond what even advertising can do – so gaining press coverage associating your company with a cause that supports your bottom line goes a long way.

Share the ways you like to measure your company’s PR campaigns in a comment below!

Posted by: The Promoter (Mackenzie Michel)

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