In an ever-changing landscape, how do we prove the value of PR?

Measurement is crucial, along with understanding new tech and adopting an agile mindset.

The value of PR is being challenged as we head towards 2020. Leaders expect a new approach. Because of increasing pressure and marketplace demand, we have to prove PR’s value in new ways.

We recently tackled this topic at Communications Week, a global event that brings together the PR, marketing and media industries. Here are three key takeaways from the week on how we can prove our value:

1. Measurement is key.

To showcase our work, we have to do a better job of setting smarter goals and objectives. Measurement can help us to do just that.

Although quantifying the value of PR can be difficult, there’s an immense benefit in metrics. Traditional planning methods inhibit measurement; when you try to plan every aspect of a program 90 days in advance, you can’t react to data in real time. The ability to measure, adjust and optimize data is crucial. That’s where digital measurement comes in.

By using tools that allow us to define key performance metrics, we can see our objectives through and evaluate them in a timely manner, ultimately resulting in smarter business decisions.

2. Don’t neglect emerging technologies.

PR is a fast-paced industry, but technology is even faster. Each day there’s a new term or product being introduced as the next big thing. Technology has greatly affected our work, and in many ways has helped PR become more efficient.

It’s vital to keep up with these changes. We must aim to be as skilled as possible with the latest innovations. If we don’t pay close attention to such advancements as voice tech and AI, we will lose massive audiences. Let the tech get away from us and we will never catch up. Tapping into these innovations will allow us not only to provide value for our clients but also demonstrate the value of our work.

3. Approach PR with an agile mindset.

If we want to communicate the value of PR, we must be agile. The PR Sprint™ Workflow, a tech-style PR planning model, is a way teams are able to move quickly and easily at the same time. By adopting an agile mindset and breaking these programs into smaller pieces, we can activate our work faster, identify roadblocks more quickly and create stronger, more nimble programs than we could with traditional planning.

The definition of value is multifaceted. We all bring a unique set of skills to the table, and when we collaborate and build off one another’s perspectives and ideas, we can produce success and demonstrate what value means for the industry.

Tiffany Guarnaccia is the founder and CEO of Kite Hill PR and founder of Communications Week.



2 Responses to “In an ever-changing landscape, how do we prove the value of PR?”

    Ronald N. Levy says:

    An impressive way to demonstrate the value of PR is by winning!

    You can help your lobbyist to win in Washington by generating tons of letters to legislators who are always eager for attention from voters. Most voters care almost nothing about most issues and rarely write but you can generate tons of mail by creating media coverage on how proposed Washington action can raise or lower consumer prices, stock prices, jobs in America or another public concern.

    If you help your lobbyist to win, your lobbyist may urge management to promote you because you’re “a PR genius” who protects the company.

    Your marketing managers, whose careers live or die based on share of market, may also tell management you’re a genius if your PR generates a massive number of clicks per dollar. Marketing execs now spend more ad dollars on the internet than on TV and know well what it costs them to generate each thousand clicks. You’re a hero if you deliver twice as many clicks per dollar as advertising, amazing if you get three times as many, and skilled PR can often do this.

    Ali Cushing says:

    I really enjoyed reading this article on the importance of proving the value of PR in our ever-changing world. The tips provided are educational as well as beneficial for all public relations practitioners to know. As a student pursuing a degree in public relations, I often receive questions about my degree choice due to the lack of understanding most people have regarding the importance of PR. As the value of PR continues to be challenged, we must prove PR’s value to companies in new and innovative ways. Great piece!” — Ali Cushing, writer/editor for Platform Magazine

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