Successful PR is more than a handful of impressions

The true value of PR should be measured by something other than raw viewer stats. Here’s how every pro should think about it.

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Whether you work in a full-service advertising agency, a PR agency or in-house at an organization, there is a lot of pressure to set goals and deliver on metric-driven key performance indicators (KPIs). After all, our access to numerical data is only increasing, courtesy of monitoring platforms offering reach, engagement and other stats to show how content landed with a particular audience.

But in an industry as largely nuanced as PR, our success simply cannot be measured by impressions and mentions alone.

At our core, PR professionals are marketers. Maintaining a holistic approach to brand awareness and business growth requires our storytelling skills and our analytical skills. Yet, since what we do can’t be measured in the same way sales can, we have to champion the creation of a set of KPIs that both reflect the work we truly do and also demonstrate its value. Recognizing what matters most to our clients and understanding the type of work that goes into achieving those results is the first step in helping them understand that successful PR is built upon a combination of quantified growth metrics and qualified intangible value.

We shouldn’t abandon traditional metrics altogether, but we should be thinking more critically about how we use them.

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