Meaningful Metrics for PR with Mark Weiner

PR Series

In this episode I interview Mark Weiner, the PR industry’s leading expert on meaningful metrics for PR, to help businesses and PR pros understand how to successfully communicate with each other, develop fruitful relationships, and dive into the details of data that shows what’s working, what needs to change, and how to make strategic decisions based on data from PR metrics. 

Believe it or not, this is a heated topic in the PR world because it has long been difficult to find extremely helpful PR metrics. A lot has changed in recent years and we discuss best practices, how to get the PR pro and the client speaking the same language to understand what success looks like, what’s possible to measure, and how to set expectations. A few takeaways … 

If you don’t understand the values and speak the language of data that executives speak, it will be very challenging to communicate the effectiveness of PR efforts. Getting on the same page with communication up front and identifying exactly what success looks like is essential to successful PR efforts in the eyes of the client.

While you can spend a lot of money on price promotion advertising to make more money in the short run, the money often stops when the ads stop because people are more cost sensitive and less loyal today. It’s like turning on and off a spigot. PR doesn’t have diminishing returns the same way as advertising. When the ad stops running, they cease to provide returns but PR lives online for years and will continue to serve you, delivering a much better return on investment than advertising.

The more involved the decision of the buyer, the more online research they are likely to perform before making a decision or even talking to a salesperson. PR stories and online reviews can carry much more sway than ads for buyers.

Taking your client through a PR audit up front is an important element in setting your objectives. It’s most helpful for a client to go through this with a third party who doesn’t have a vested interest in a positive outcome. The most honest responses are given anonymously, confidentially, in an online survey, where the results are only given in aggregate. 

This episode at glance … 

>>  (4:45-9:25) How to reduce friction between PR pros and clients in finding meaningful metrics and data as well as what to do with it 

>> (9:30-14:15) How measurable objectives prove the value of PR

>> (14:15-13:00) While PR may not drive the most sales in volume, it does provide the greatest efficiency

>> (13:05-21 :45) What to measure and how to maximize measurement insights to grow your business

>> (21:45-22:15) Key insights that companies and PR firms should look for in their metrics and the role of technology in it 

>> (27:20-40:00) The most important questions to discuss at the outset of a campaign or working relationship to develop the right program to track the right metrics 

>> (40:30-48:00) Most overused metrics 

>> (51:50-55:00) Good options for small businesses who can’t afford expensive focus groups for research

>> (55:40-1:05:00) How to tell stories from data

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