For 2019 planning, here are the four ways to gauge whether your marketing and public relations investment paid off as it should:

  1. Engagement Growth – Take a hard look at the numbers.
  • Were social media engagements up or down?
  • Was the sales team getting leads as a result of media coverage?
  • Did the PR and marketing team come to you with new ideas that challenged your thinking?
  • Did you have full visibility into what the marketing and PR team was doing?
  • Did you ever feel “blown away” by a result?
  1. Impact on Sales Funnel – Public relations should feed the bottom line.
  • What were the web traffic report numbers prior to, during and post news announcements? There should have been spikes of traffic during and after an announcement or media coverage.
  • What was the unique visitor count and average visitor time?
  • Did you have the ability to collect incoming emails to develop an email response to drive them down the sales funnel?
  • Did public relations turn interest in your company into a conversation?
  1. Media Coverage Quality and Quantity – When you’re a hammer, all the world is a nail, so of course we are hyperaware of the amount of coverage over a year. Here’s what our clients want to see:
  • How much coverage and who did it reach?
  • Were you in the right media outlets? If not, why? You can’t improve what you don’t know.
  • How did the stories trend online? Which got the most likes or comments?
  • Were you the primary source, a secondary or a mention?
  • Was the coverage positive, negative or neutral?
  • Did news stories get re-purposed in all marketing touchpoints such as newsletters, sales decks, emails to prospects and social media channels?
  • If not, it’s time for all of marketing to get together for some holiday cheer and start brainstorming the best ways to work together to make more of your marketing and PR spend.
  1. Talent Impact – In this zero-unemployment market, it is more important than ever to attract and retain top talent. Have you been getting the A-Players you want?
  • Did you have a recruitment component in your PR and marketing agenda?
  • Were new key hires announced? Did coverage help to open doors with recruitment efforts?
  • What have your employees and ex-employees said about you on Glassdoor? Most job applicants look there first.
  • Have you been effectively communicating your company’s culture and core values to attract talent?

As the holidays approach, we’ve begun preparation of one of the most radically transparent acts our agency performs … Media Hit Books. People love to see how fat the books are and peruse at their leisure. Clients show them off in their conference rooms, lobbies, with investors and major prospects. This is a great reminder that public relations is the least expensive, most effective marketing tool and it makes your mothers proud.