Gini Dietrich

Measuring PR Success: Seven Metrics to Consider

By: Gini Dietrich | September 19, 2011 | 
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Last week Eric Wittke wrote a blog post on Flames on Fifth Avenue about the perception of the PR industry.

He described the answers he receives (the same we’ve all experienced) when he tells someone he’s in PR…and how irritating it is that people assume we lie or spin for a living.

And now, a new sitcom on NBC – Free Agents – isn’t helping our image (even though Molli Megasko tells me it’s hilarious).

This isn’t a new topic at Spin Sucks, but it seems that we have to continue repeating it, especially if we want the business world to take us seriously.

You see, what we do isn’t tangible. It’s easy for people to understand advertising because they can see it, touch it, feel it.

But can you see, touch, or feel a reputation? Or an avoided crisis? Or customer retention? Internally you can, but most of the people who assume we help corporations lie don’t see the tangible results.

I commented on Eric’s blog post:

We have to, have to, have to show our worth in terms of dollars and cents. The pundits who talk about awareness and impressions and sentiment have clearly never run a P&L. It makes me nuts. I run two businesses. If one of my peeps came to me and said, “We have to keep this program going because it’s creating positive sentiment, I would laugh them out of the room.”

This isn’t about sentiment and impressions and mentions. Sure, those things help with awareness. But they’re not the end all, be all.

I know there is a debate about whether or not PR can or should help with sales, directly, but I’m here to tell you, if you do not figure out how it does, you will not have a job in the future.

Following is a list of things you should be accountable for and measuring toward every day:

  • Sales
  • Lead nurturing
  • Lead generation
  • Lead conversion
  • Thought leadership
  • Web traffic
  • Brand awareness

I challenge you to create a goal for each of the seven categories above, for the next three months, and see what kind of effect you can have on the business in the last quarter of the year.

If you need help with ideas for each, leave a comment below and I’m happy to help you brainstorm. I know some of our regular commenters will help, too.

If you take this challenge and truly measure your efforts, I guarantee you’ll enter 2012 with your colleagues and peers excited about working with you next year…because you’ll have, overnight, gone from an expense to an investment.

About Gini Dietrich


Gini Dietrich is the founder and CEO of Arment Dietrich, an integrated marketing communications firm. She is the author of Spin Sucks, co-author of Marketing in the Round, and co-host of Inside PR. She also is the lead blogger at Spin Sucks and is the founder of Spin Sucks Pro.

  • Measure, measure, measure!! That is my mantra and I think, makes me truly more of an investment than an expense. When I sense that I’ve slipped from the I to an E, I have a discussion with the client, fine tune our plan and re-tool the approach. There’s no reason what so ever that we should still cling to intangible PR approaches anymore. In this day, and economic climate, bottom line is what keeps the machine rolling. We either need to be a part of that forward motion or get out of the way. Thanks! 1st in!! Woo-hoo!

  • Really good Gini… and this is one of the reasons I think video is such a critical tool for the PR industry. Producing quality videos can be one of the few things that help accomplish most of those goals on your list. The best part is the more quality videos you produce, the more they’ll help.

    Thanks for setting up my sales pitch so well! 🙂

    –Tony Gnau

  • Really good Gini… and this is one of the reasons I think video is such a critical tool for the PR industry. Producing quality videos can be one of the few things that help accomplish most of those goals on your list. The best part is the more quality videos you produce, the more they’ll help.

    Thanks for setting up my sales pitch so well! 🙂

    –Tony Gnau

  • jgwhitt

    Great thoughts on this important topic @ginidietrich! As PR practitioners, we need to be tying into overall business objectives of our companies or clients. But I am still waiting to see a concrete example of this – a b2b scenario would be grand. Anyone? Anyone? I know they are out there…;)

  • jgwhitt

    @EricaAllison Great comment! What kind of measurements are working best for you?

  • I just began working for my friend who happens to be an interior designer here in NYC. His PR firm that he hired is not showing any real results. How much time should be allotted for getting the word out?

    I told him I am very surprised that she (his agent) does not keep in close contact with him and give him status report on what she has going on for him. She charges him a lot of money and he is still not in the desired mags that he wants his work featured in.

    When do you think it would be fair to cut the cord? The relationship is four months old and she has generated 8,000 in revenue compared with him paying her 4,000 a month. To me, the ROI is simply not there – or am I too impatient?

  • Coming from the client side, I can certainly say that the measurable results are important. All seven bullets are key in most campaigns. And @EricaAllison makes a great point about staying an investment not an expense.

    I think one thing, coming from the other side of the table, that is important for PRs is demonstrating the results that stemmed directly from your efforts. i.e. We have a PR and marketing campaigns going, sales goes up, who gets credit — marketing or PR?

  • Coming from the client side, I can certainly say that the measurable results are important. All seven bullets are key in most campaigns. And @EricaAllison makes a great point about staying an investment not an expense.

    I think one thing, coming from the other side of the table, that is important for PRs is demonstrating the results that stemmed directly from your efforts. i.e. We have a PR and marketing campaigns going, sales goes up, who gets credit — marketing or PR?

  • thewhalehunters

    I’m in sales, not PR, but your list of things to be accountable for is core to the success of any business. I’d add one more–probably implicit in your thinking, but nevertheless–all of your seven categories depend on the quality of the target customer that is understood in the business and by the PR firm as well as the sales and business development team. So I might add “from target customer” or “with target customer” to each of your categories. Nice job! @

  • thewhalehunters

    @adamtoporek@EricaAllison

    That is such an excellent question! For the good of the company, it’s important to establish a collaborative mindset in which everyone understands how initiatives are interrelated. Specific accomplishments can’t really be carved out as credit for one effort or the other. Certain metrics will always be shared by sales, marketing, and PR when it’s going well. I’d like to see sales, marketing, and PR agree on the metrics and also a cost of sales metric that could demonstrate ROI value in the collaborative approach.

  • Maybe you can answer this for me. I’m not a PR person. Certainly a measure of PR has been a part of every job I’ve had, including now, but I’m not “trained” in PR and what I do in terms of PR is just natural stuff that is part of the territory. As a communicator, I’m scratching my head and wondering how PR ever got separated from those other disciplines in the first place. To me, as an outsider, it’s a no brainer. The end goal is to sell a product or service. Everything you do in the company should contribute to that goal.

    Is this a relatively recent thing where people say you shouldn’t tie them together, or has it always been this way?

    As for me, I’m gonna print this list out and see what I can do to further help build my business, and help my clients.

  • I measure my PR efforts with a ruler and a whole smorgasbord of Google Analytics.

    I prefer the ruler.

  • glenn_ferrell

    Love this list. Thinking of diagramming it in a circular flow chart and taping it to my wall: “Thought Leadership –> Web Traffic –> Brand Awareness –> Lead generation –> Lead nurturing –> Lead conversion –> Sales”. I could put a pin in the box as I moved around the circle — to make sure I paid enough attention to each. (Of course, pretty soon I would have a large circular hole in my wall — but it’s a thought 🙂

  • glenn_ferrell

    Love this list. Thinking of diagramming it in a circular flow chart and taping it to my wall: “Thought Leadership –> Web Traffic –> Brand Awareness –> Lead generation –> Lead nurturing –> Lead conversion –> Sales”. I could put a pin in the box as I moved around the circle — to make sure I paid enough attention to each. (Of course, pretty soon I would have a large circular hole in my wall — but it’s a thought 🙂

  • @jgwhitt That’s a very good question! I’m going to give an example that you asked for in your comment above.

    In order to measure anything, I start with the end result, the client goals and work my way back from there. I then talk to everyone else that touches that goal: the sales team, marketing (sometimes that’s me, sometimes it’s another firm), customer service and make sure we’re all clear on that goal.

    For example, is it to increase the number of quality leads to an insurance agency website? Let’s say yes (‘cos that’s one I’m working on). I ask the sales team what questions they get asked most often. I ask the online marketing company to give me the Google analytics and look at the keywords and search terms. I ask customer service what issues they have had re: their products or offerings. I then set up new goals in the Google Analytics to correspond to my approach: create content on the company blog and in the social platforms that addresses the number one customer issue of affordable health insurance. I create content catering to that. I set up a special download form related to that. I publish and promote and then repurpose and cross promote to drive customers to my content. I then review the anlaytics based on my new goals, new content and unique download url. I can see if my efforts either worked or they didn’t. I also ask the sales team if they’ve gotten better leads and if they were able to close them. If they got them, but couldn’t close them, we review the content and tweak. After a 60 day period, we review overall analytics, my unique goal analytics and revenue/bottom line to see the impact. My client can then see the effect from my efforts.

  • Over in my world – we only had 3 targets (it’s all bigger and better over in USA!!) – cash, data (from which to mine cash), or awareness (which had better be pretty darned good – leading to data and cash) to consider before we used any meaningful resource to explore PR opportunities…… Of course, ‘spare’ resource can be used to create a bit of fun / or target other avenues – but not much of that about nowadays……. Players time (in sports) has not been used well historically to drive PR – but that is certainly a current ‘spare capacity’ resource.

    Even now – with Twitter for players seeing take off – not many teams are using their resource (the players) to drive cash/data etc… And there are so many great options to do just that…

  • ginidietrich

    @EricaAllison Look at that! @KenMueller is slipping. Maybe this was his birthday present to you??

  • ginidietrich

    @EricaAllison@jgwhitt You could even take that one step further and look at leads before the campaign and leads after and show an increase (hopefully) in targets. One thing we do is include product information (webinars, ebooks) in a blog post. Then, with on-page analytics, I can see how many people have clicked on the product link and then correlate that to how many people bought. So, for instance, in one blog post, the analytics showed me two percent clicked and, from my sales report, I know 1.8 percent of them bought. So that one blog post drove approximately $3,600.

  • ginidietrich

    @T60Productions Talk more about this because we have LOTS of clients who would like to do video, but don’t want to spend the money. How does video help?

  • ginidietrich

    @T60Productions Talk more about this because we have LOTS of clients who would like to do video, but don’t want to spend the money. How does video help?

  • ginidietrich

    @jgwhitt I answered this for you below…

  • ginidietrich

    @jgwhitt I answered this for you below…

  • @ginidietrich@EricaAllison Hey, it’s all about the timing. I was walking my dog! And I don’t want to look TOO eager, or people will start wondering.

  • ginidietrich

    @NancyD68 Traditional media relations (or publicity), like this, takes a really long time to take effect. Most of the design publications he likely wants to be in have a six-month lead time. So that means it’ll be a good nine to 12 months before he sees any kind of result. It’s a really expensive, really hard thing to measure, which is why we stopped doing it. For someone like him, it’s going to be nothing more than a good ego stroke.

  • ginidietrich

    @thewhalehunters@adamtoporek We do a few things, such as unique URLs, that only we (PR) use so we can track our efforts directly. But, most times, we work directly with the marketing department so we all get credit. One of the big things I’m personally striving toward is no silos. If you don’t have silos, the company gets credit instead of marketing or PR taking it. You’re going to see a lot more on that coming from me in the next few months.

  • ginidietrich

    @thewhalehunters One of the things we really struggle with, that you may be able to shed some light on, is we generate leads and the sales team never follows up. For instance, I was with a client last week and we were looking at Q3 results from the PR and marketing. They’re pretty significant. But, when compared to what’s in their CRM, it’s apparent sales is doing nothing with those leads. It’s pretty frustrating.

  • ginidietrich

    @KenMueller It’s been this way my entire career. I mean, I worked for one of the biggest PR firms and we measured advertising equivalency and impressions. That isn’t a real return on anything…except maybe ego.

  • ginidietrich

    @JayDolan You know what’s funny? I ALMOST used a ruler as the image but didn’t think anyone would get it. Now I know we have the same sick sense of humor and you’ll get it.

  • ginidietrich

    @JayDolan You know what’s funny? I ALMOST used a ruler as the image but didn’t think anyone would get it. Now I know we have the same sick sense of humor and you’ll get it.

  • ginidietrich

    @glenn_ferrell I LOVE the image this portrays!

  • ginidietrich

    @glenn_ferrell I LOVE the image this portrays!

  • ginidietrich

    @Nic_Cartwright I really like this: Cash, data, awareness. I may steal it!

  • ginidietrich

    @Nic_Cartwright I really like this: Cash, data, awareness. I may steal it!

  • jgwhitt

    @ginidietrich@EricaAllison These are great examples – thank you! We are in the process of using Google Analytics to track PR results and it looks promising. One of the areas we are struggling with is the premium content you are referring to, such as webinars, ebooks, etc. It is naturally easier when you can track a lead via a download form. We just need more content but we are getting there. There are also some nifty marketing automation tools I have seen that can give you insight into what folks are doing on your website, even integrating with a CRM like Salesforce so you can collect and take people through the buying process. So what about situations where leads are coming in where it is not linked directly to premium content on your own website, such as an article on a third-party site or an analyst report? How do you track those indirect hits?

  • jgwhitt

    @ginidietrich Saw it – thanks

  • jgwhitt

    @ginidietrich Saw it – thanks

  • Working backwards up your list, specifically thinking of YouTube:

    Brand awareness – Branding the first five seconds of a video is a must. The video itself should flow from your brand’s message. Keep it short and end with the same branding you started the video with.

    Web traffic – YouTube is the second largest social network and second largest search engine.

    Thought leadership – Videos are like blogs. ON STEROIDS.

    Lead conversion – CTAs, reputation and advanced tracking metrics… Finding out where the videos are embedded and reaching out to those bloggers, writers, etc. And reaching out to establish relationships with commenters on those blogs/websites (and also YouTube commenters).

    Lead generation, Lead nurturing – All of the above multiplied the personal touch of actually seeing a face on the brand and it’s message.

    Sales – (From the perspective of online sales) You can’t buy directly from YouTube, but you can link to purchase pages to drive people there. More importantly, you can embed your videos wherever people buy, thus providing a final boost to get them moving in the right direction (BUY!).

  • Working backwards up your list, specifically thinking of YouTube:

    Brand awareness – Branding the first five seconds of a video is a must. The video itself should flow from your brand’s message. Keep it short and end with the same branding you started the video with.

    Web traffic – YouTube is the second largest social network and second largest search engine.

    Thought leadership – Videos are like blogs. ON STEROIDS.

    Lead conversion – CTAs, reputation and advanced tracking metrics… Finding out where the videos are embedded and reaching out to those bloggers, writers, etc. And reaching out to establish relationships with commenters on those blogs/websites (and also YouTube commenters).

    Lead generation, Lead nurturing – All of the above multiplied the personal touch of actually seeing a face on the brand and it’s message.

    Sales – (From the perspective of online sales) You can’t buy directly from YouTube, but you can link to purchase pages to drive people there. More importantly, you can embed your videos wherever people buy, thus providing a final boost to get them moving in the right direction (BUY!).

  • @ginidietrich but you’re young. Historically, do you have any idea if it was always like this?

    and see how i did that? i called you young! bonus points for me

  • ginidietrich

    @KenMueller Yes, historically it’s always been this way. Integration was a big thing in the late 90s and early 2000s. Then the tech bubble burst and everyone retreated. We’re just now dipping our toes in the water again.

  • @ginidietrich you C.A.D. – #madeupacroynmsinaction

  • @glenn_ferrell Not sure if you’re kidding but that’s actually a great idea!

  • @glenn_ferrell Not sure if you’re kidding but that’s actually a great idea!

  • @ginidietrich Do you think PR should taught in a business college where this type of measurement is common versus a mass comm college? Does it matter?

  • AlinaKelly

    @ginidietrich@KenMueller@ginideitrich – why would you NOT want to track the contributions of PR or marketing or customer service to sales? Sales needs them all to get results.

    The issue I see over and over is not only measurement but remuneration: you get what you reward. As @KenMueller says, the end goal is to sell a product or a service. It’s leadership’s role to reward these various contributing disciplines for working together effectively to deliver on customer expectations. What we need are rulers that measure EVERYONE’s contributions to that end goal rather than worry whether is was wheat, flax or oats that made the difference to the multi-grain loaf. The only thing we know is that it would not be the same loaf if one of these were missing.

  • Wow. You wrote this, Gini ? Very impressed. Seriously, wish I could afford to hire you and Erica. I am going to look at these 7 things on the list and make some goals. great comments and suggestions from everyone. Thanks.

    Al

  • jackielamp

    This is a challenge we face every day. Clients and prospects come to us wanting the exact metrics you suggest. What I have a hard time figuring out is how do you tie PR to sales, lead gen and conversion? Particularly in B2B?

    The reason I think this becomes so difficult is because PR tends to be viewed as a standalone instead of another contributing part of the business. It should contribute to the overall goals that you mentioned above, right? I can’t see how it’s the only thing that will get you the results you want…yet some companies evaluate it as such and are quick to cut us out of the marketing budget when they haven’t generated enough leads. Lack of lead gen, sales, etc. cannot be only attributed to PR…

  • thewhalehunters

    @ginidietrich Almost everyone struggles with that. Sales and marketing typically do not get along. In my view it requires cross-functional planning/training and agreements to get sales/marketing (including PR) on the same page (then operations too). Your next comment says it all–silos.

  • AlinaKelly

    @ginidietrich@thewhalehunters You get what you reward. I’d ask: what is sales being rewarded for?

  • This is exactly what I needed and the timing is even more perfect. As a young PR pro working in house at a non-profit, I find myself essentially alone to figure this all out. My goal for the next few months is to try and collaborate with the other departments and figure out our goals and how we can measure them. These 7 metrics are perfect and just where I will start. Everyone’s comments have been particularly helpful as well. I’m sure I will be back with questions after I really think through this myself.

    Thank you for this, I have been racking my brain trying to figure out where to start and now I can!

  • AlinaKelly

    @ginidietrich@thewhalehunters@adamtoporek

    I’ve spent most of my career trying to get things done across silos. The issue I see over and over is not only measurement but remuneration: you get what you reward. @thewhalehunters is bang on re: shared metrics. It’s not entirely about whether wheat, flax or oats made the difference to the multi-grain loaf. The only thing we know for certain is that it would not be the same loaf if one of these were missing.

  • AlinaKelly

    @ginidietrich@thewhalehunters@adamtoporek

    I’ve spent most of my career trying to get things done across silos. The issue I see over and over is not only measurement but remuneration: you get what you reward. @thewhalehunters is bang on re: shared metrics. It’s not entirely about whether wheat, flax or oats made the difference to the multi-grain loaf. The only thing we know for certain is that it would not be the same loaf if one of these were missing.

  • This is no different than Advertising. Johnathan Salem Baskin wrote a recent AdAge piece about CMO’s getting fired left and right wondering what the main issue is for their short tenure of all C Suite. Same deal. They get away with the jargon as their performance measures. Until the CFO looks at things and says ‘Really? Impressions?’ ‘Really? Sentiment?’

    Then he says ‘I don’t give a flying…er Pig…about that! How are you impacting our bottom line? The COO reduced costs 5% and increased productivity 5%. The VP of Sales grew revenue by 15% and profits by 10%’ What did you do? You say we had 30,000 positive mentions on the Twitter? You say we got $5 million free impressions in major news outlets? Can you prove that is worth $5mil? You can not compare that to paid advertising. We craft the message with paid advertising. News Outlets we have no control over.

    Then the CFO goes to the CMO and says you go with the head of PR and have a bullshit session in the bathroom stall then come and tell us what your efforts really achieved!

  • glenn_ferrell

    @joelfortner03 Not kidding (except about the hole in the wall.) I think in diagrams 🙂

  • Bull’s eye again, Gini. I have several alliances with PR companies for the precise reason you state.Only the first thing I do, especially with larger companies, is ask if they are working with a PR firm, and if so, why we aren’t talking to each other. And if not, I find a polite way to ask why they are so stupid.

    It’s one thing if the company is so new or so devoid of resources that they simply can’t afford it. But for any established company, not working with someone in PR is asking for trouble.

    The fact is, marketing, sales, search, web traffic, reputation management – none of it should be done in a vacuum. Ever. If you can’t figure out how to tell them it increases profits, show them some examples of how they’ll lose money. I prefer not to use fear of loss but if you care, and they aren’t listening, you have to go with what works.

  • ginidietrich

    @fitzternet I like the idea of embedding videos where people buy – provides a more personal touch. But I’m not sold on the videos, themselves, being the catalyst for purchase.

  • ginidietrich

    @Al Smith What do you mean I wrote this?! You think I can’t write something smart?? Why I oughta!

  • KDillabough

    @TomRedwine @ginidietrich Thanks Tom:) I always appreciate your support

  • ginidietrich

    @jackielamp The problem I think you face is much of what you do is publicity. It’s REALLY hard to measure to these metrics with publicity. But PR is more than publicity and your clients are right in asking for it. I find B2B MUCH easier to measure than B2C because the pool is smaller and very niche’d. You can see a direct correlation.

    But, if you’re only using publicity, you can do something one client does. We track the number of leads inside Salesforce before a news release is distributed or a story runs. Then we track the number of leads after. We also use unique URLs so we know the traffic and leads came from that story or release.

  • ginidietrich

    @rachaelseda Come back with questions! I’m happy to help.

  • ginidietrich

    @HowieSPM Exactly. The good CMOs are those who understand how all of this integrates, how to break down the silos, and how to hire the right people to execute the right tactics. The reason a CMO has a two-year lifespan is because most think a tactic is a strategy.

  • @ginidietrich You know how much I totally agree with this. Your list is great, particularly for marketing PR programs. I need to think a bit about how to use them in corporate communications. Certainly building a good corporate reputation helps sales, but we also need measure the intangibles, public opinion polls come to mind. There are organizations that don’t sell a product or service but they still need support to succeed. They need good PR and it has to be measured.

    Seriously, getting over a fear of more measurement and being held accountable is critical for all areas of PR if we want more respect. Not to mention getting paid better for the results we deliver.

  • ginidietrich

    @Tinu Actually, I really like the example of showing how they’ll lose money. It’s easy to get people excited about how they’ll make money, but they lose that excitement pretty quickly when they see how much you cost. I like showing both sides of it.

  • ginidietrich

    @RickRice I don’t disagree with you one bit. From a corp comm perspective, there are lots of things (you mention opinion polls, for instance) we can do to measure results. Unique URLs, increases in survey results (we do this for employee comm a lot), positive stories around a crisis event, etc. While those don’t generate $$ directly, they certainly save money in lost transactions because the reputation is solid.

  • SpinSucks

    @martinwaxman Hi Martin! thanks for the share. 🙂

  • SpinSucks

    @martinwaxman Hi Martin! thanks for the share. 🙂

  • Excellent point. 🙂 @ginidietrich I feel guilty about it sometimes because I like to frame things positively when I can, but you’re right, that could be overcome by showing both sides. Reputation problems cost a LOT of money, in Google, social media, traditional press, even when they aren’t true. If people would go to PR *before* they have a problem, they could head a lot of it off before it reduced sales.

  • John_Trader1

    Gone are the days of handing over blank checks to the PR staff without any type of accountability to show how the value of their work has added to the bottom line. The warm fuzziness of PR has morphed into the Jerry McGuire Cuba Gooding, Jr. famous quote.

    I think it goes without saying that any young PR pros looking for your first job had best be able to clearly articulate how they plan to measure their ideas brought to the table in a way that translates back into the bottom line. And if you are a PR veteran looking for a career change, I wouldn’t even bother walking into another agency/company without a list of tangible results via the categories @ginidietrich mentions above. If the interviewer for some outlandish reason doesn’t ask you for them, then its probably not a company you may want to work for in the first place.

    Viva la metrics.

  • jackielamp

    @ginidietrich That’s a good point, and those are good suggestions that I’m going to start using where applicable! Thank you!

  • ginidietrich

    @John_Trader1 Wait. There were days of blank checks?! Man. I knew I should have been older.

  • ginidietrich

    @Tinu Amen, amen, and AMEN!

  • @ginidietrich Ha ! You are multi-talented girlfriend. Just like messin with you. Thanks for this excellent post.

  • Hi Gini… just getting back from a shoot tonight, so I apologize about the late reply. I won’t double up on what @fitzternet wrote since he’s dead-on. Here’s some additions…

    Sales: video can be a terrific sales tool. It allows you to show customers what your product or service is all about. Not just write or talk about it, but actually show them. It’s not just words on a screen. Your company is a living breathing thing, with real people behind it. Video transports the customer, giving them a sense of what you’re about and the people who make it all happen.

    Lead nurturing / Lead generation / Lead conversion: videos do a great job in these three areas. Working in reverse order… videos are a great way to lead conversation. Posting a quality video that focuses on the audience’s needs via social media is bound to generate some sort of response. The more you’re able to do that, guess what happens? The more likely your brand will grow and more your brand grows the more leads will flow your way. Once you have those new customers, continuing to post videos will only solidify that base. Especially if you figure out ways to incorporate your customers into your videos (essentially promoting them as well).

    Thought leadership: videos take it to a whole new level. Addressing the issues facing your industry and your customers positions you as a leader in your field. Anyone can write about them. Only a company that’s incredibly dedicated is going to produce quality videos to take on important trends. The better your videos and the more you do them on a consistent basis, the more people will turn to your business for your opinion and your solutions.

    Web traffic: is there any doubt videos drive web traffic? There’s tons of data out there supporting this. It’s a no brainer, web surfers are more apt to watch a quality video than read pages of text.

    Brand awareness: video is all about brand, but this comes with a word of caution. In many cases, good quality video brands you as a good quality company. Crappy video brands you as… well… you get the picture. If you’re going to do something, do it right. Video leaves a lasting impression on people… make yours a good one.

    –Tony Gnau

  • Hi Gini… just getting back from a shoot tonight, so I apologize about the late reply. I won’t double up on what @fitzternet wrote since he’s dead-on. Here’s some additions…

    Sales: video can be a terrific sales tool. It allows you to show customers what your product or service is all about. Not just write or talk about it, but actually show them. It’s not just words on a screen. Your company is a living breathing thing, with real people behind it. Video transports the customer, giving them a sense of what you’re about and the people who make it all happen.

    Lead nurturing / Lead generation / Lead conversion: videos do a great job in these three areas. Working in reverse order… videos are a great way to lead conversation. Posting a quality video that focuses on the audience’s needs via social media is bound to generate some sort of response. The more you’re able to do that, guess what happens? The more likely your brand will grow and more your brand grows the more leads will flow your way. Once you have those new customers, continuing to post videos will only solidify that base. Especially if you figure out ways to incorporate your customers into your videos (essentially promoting them as well).

    Thought leadership: videos take it to a whole new level. Addressing the issues facing your industry and your customers positions you as a leader in your field. Anyone can write about them. Only a company that’s incredibly dedicated is going to produce quality videos to take on important trends. The better your videos and the more you do them on a consistent basis, the more people will turn to your business for your opinion and your solutions.

    Web traffic: is there any doubt videos drive web traffic? There’s tons of data out there supporting this. It’s a no brainer, web surfers are more apt to watch a quality video than read pages of text.

    Brand awareness: video is all about brand, but this comes with a word of caution. In many cases, good quality video brands you as a good quality company. Crappy video brands you as… well… you get the picture. If you’re going to do something, do it right. Video leaves a lasting impression on people… make yours a good one.

    –Tony Gnau

  • Hi Gini… just getting back from a shoot tonight, so I apologize about the late reply. I won’t double up on what @fitzternet wrote since he’s dead-on. Here’s some additions…

    Sales: video can be a terrific sales tool. It allows you to show customers what your product or service is all about. Not just write or talk about it, but actually show them. It’s not just words on a screen. Your company is a living breathing thing, with real people behind it. Video transports the customer, giving them a sense of what you’re about and the people who make it all happen.

    Lead nurturing / Lead generation / Lead conversion: videos do a great job in these three areas. Working in reverse order… videos are a great way to lead conversation. Posting a quality video that focuses on the audience’s needs via social media is bound to generate some sort of response. The more you’re able to do that, guess what happens? The more likely your brand will grow and more your brand grows the more leads will flow your way. Once you have those new customers, continuing to post videos will only solidify that base. Especially if you figure out ways to incorporate your customers into your videos (essentially promoting them as well).

    Thought leadership: videos take it to a whole new level. Addressing the issues facing your industry and your customers positions you as a leader in your field. Anyone can write about them. Only a company that’s incredibly dedicated is going to produce quality videos to take on important trends. The better your videos and the more you do them on a consistent basis, the more people will turn to your business for your opinion and your solutions.

    Web traffic: is there any doubt videos drive web traffic? There’s tons of data out there supporting this. It’s a no brainer, web surfers are more apt to watch a quality video than read pages of text.

    Brand awareness: video is all about brand, but this comes with a word of caution. In many cases, good quality video brands you as a good quality company. Crappy video brands you as… well… you get the picture. If you’re going to do something, do it right. Video leaves a lasting impression on people… make yours a good one.

    –Tony Gnau

  • Leon

    G’Day Gini,

    “from an expense to an investment” Luvit! Only this morning I commented on a HR blog to the effect that the prime purpose of HR is to help managers achieve better business results. Same applies to PR–we’re only eight letters apart–marketing, accounting, advertising and all the other so-called “services.”

    My experience suggests that a major problem facing we “service specialists” is that our clients lack business focus and carefully defined and specific target markets. This is exaggerated when the service specialist doesn’t realize the important of these two issues–metrics if you like.

    Gini, I do apologise for being so agreeable again. Be warned. If you keep on the way you’re going, you’ll be as curmudgeonly as I am at my age. But that’s a long time in the future……..1

    Continue to have fun

    RegardsLeon

  • ginidietrich

    @Leon You do know we all aspire to be as curmudgeonly as you? In fact, bdorman264 publicly admits he’s trying to beat you at it.

  • @ginidietrich Piece of cake; Leon mentored me to his level and then I realized I could be much more curmudgeonly than that. Of course, that’s just my competitive nature; I want to be the best regardless of what competition it is. You should see where I am in the flakiness competition…………..

  • @ginidietrich Piece of cake; Leon mentored me to his level and then I realized I could be much more curmudgeonly than that. Of course, that’s just my competitive nature; I want to be the best regardless of what competition it is. You should see where I am in the flakiness competition…………..

  • PoonamAgarwal

    Hi,

    I am just joined a marketing team and I would like to get help from you about how do I set metrics for each of them. Especially, for brand awareness which metrics do you put and how do you measure that?

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  • @ginidietrich Smart. Do you use bit.ly for unique urls or does the client create custom ones for you?

  • ginidietrich

    @JGoldsborough We typically create them because we have access to our client’s CMS. I should have been a programmer. lisagerber always jokes that I should get a promotion because of my development skills.

  • ginidietrich

    @PoonamAgarwal I would definitely create landing pages that you use only in your brand awareness campaigns. Say, for instance, you have a column that you wrote for a trade publication. In that article, use a unique URL so you know how many people have come to your site from that article. If you can create a unique landing page, for that URL, that has a call-to-action (a download for a white paper or a registration for a webinar), you’ll begin to generate leads

  • @ginidietrichlisagerber I’ll tell you that one of the biggest issues we run into when it comes to Web analytics is getting access to all the data we need to make informed decisions because so many different groups have their hands in it. Much harder when we don’t manage the website we are driving traffic to.

  • ginidietrich , as always, you hit on a lot of stellar points. And I’ll be sharing your post at my office — lots of folks liked the chocolate bar post :). Web traffic is one that sounds easy, but that we don’t track as much as we should, often because there are so many departments with their hands in it, that it’s hard to get access to all the data we need.

    I would add insurance and influencing conversation to your list. Insurance meaning crisis communications. And influencing conversation meaning can you clear up misconceptions about you brand online and then change the way people talk about what you provide. That said, next step needs to be tracking how that conversation is driving your calls to action (often clickthroughs) and conversions.

    Lastly, I’m considering not using the term PR anymore. It’s got such a offputting connotation and people react negatively to it. Plus, what we really do is business and communications consulting. Or at least, that’s what we should be doing. And as kenmueller said, our goal should always be to move the needle for our clients. That said, I would be interested in your opinion on ambassador programs that are designed to drive WOM offline. Have you ever found a good way to position being top of mind and “recommendable?”

  • Boy, this one’s really got me thinking about my own business and my client’s, too. In Canada we have a measurement approach for publicity called MRP (won’t bore you with the details) that basically measures impressions and qualitative metrics that we select with our clients’ input. Many of our awards programs are asking to see the MRP results as a way of evaluating a successful program. Problem is, the MRP metrics don’t include any of the ‘hard’ measurement you’re recommending (of course, IABC and CPRS always look favourably on programs that have a real impact on a business). When MRP was launched, I embraced it completely. It gave us a consistent way of evaluating media coverage. But I know I have rested on my laurels a bit and didn’t push myself to look for additional metrics that matter in the C-suite. Thanks for the nudge, Gini (by the way, still squirming at my house about that traveling eel).

  • @PoonamAgarwal@ginidietrich I was just reading about Formstack – jasonfalls blogged about it the other day – you can create your own landing pages. It looks very cool, and seems to be reasonably priced. http://www.formstack.com/

  • You know, Gini, I hate to keep agreeing with you. One of these days I won’t. But on this subject I do agree. To be relevant, we must justify our existence and the one true and sure way to do that is to demonstrate tangible results.

  • ginidietrich

    @GayleJoseph Well, there is ONE thing we disagree about. And it’ll be fierce disagreement this Sunday.

  • ginidietrich

    @Shelley Pringle I know MRP… martinwaxman talks about it a lot. It’s the same as the impressions and advertising equivalency so rampant in the States. But it’s great that we’re all exploring other ways to measure. I’ve been hacking Google analytics for us and a client, in order to get the data I need. When I have it perfect, I’m going to teach people how to do it inside Spin Sucks Pro. It’s pretty exciting!

  • ginidietrich

    @JGoldsborough What do you mean with your last sentence? In terms of measuring it?

  • ginidietrich

    @JGoldsborough What do you mean with your last sentence? In terms of measuring it?

  • ginidietrich

    @Lisa Gerber@PoonamAgarwal I’m using FormStack for one of our clients…but don’t tell the SEO guys. They don’t like it!

  • ginidietrich

    @Lisa Gerber@PoonamAgarwal I’m using FormStack for one of our clients…but don’t tell the SEO guys. They don’t like it!

  • @ginidietrich Right. Measuring recommendability.

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  • @ginidietrich You’re right. 🙂 The next disagreement will be Christmas day! That’s kind of sad, though.

  • @ginidietrich You’re right. 🙂 The next disagreement will be Christmas. Are people even permitted to disagree on that day?

  • ginidietrich

    @GayleJoseph It’s OK. The Packers are a MUCH better ball team than the Bears this year. So we’ll agree on Christmas Day that I’m OK with the Packers beating them. Again.

  • Thanks for the kind words @ginidietrich!

    It really, really, really makes my day when I see PR folks who realize and appreciate the business value of what they’re doing. The chasm between business-sales and PR clearly needs to be tightened — ideally, integrated. And if there’s one language that can bring both business and PR together, perhaps that language would be Investment.

    Business owners like yourself always bring a great perspective that gets neglected on the educational/theory side of things. It’s simple: PR is a business investment in need of measurement. The last thing PR needs is to be considered an unproductive, gaudy, pointless expense.

    Thanks for your insights! And don’t worry, we’ll find someone who disagrees with you one of these days. 🙂

  • Thanks for the kind words @ginidietrich!

    It really, really, really makes my day when I see PR folks who realize and appreciate the business value of what they’re doing. The chasm between business-sales and PR clearly needs to be tightened — ideally, integrated. And if there’s one language that can bring both business and PR together, perhaps that language would be Investment.

    Business owners like yourself always bring a great perspective that gets neglected on the educational/theory side of things. It’s simple: PR is a business investment in need of measurement. The last thing PR needs is to be considered an unproductive, gaudy, pointless expense.

    Thanks for your insights! And don’t worry, we’ll find someone who disagrees with you one of these days. 🙂

  • ginidietrich

    @ewittke Oh there are plenty of people who disagree with me. They’re just too smart to post a comment here. 🙂

  • @ginidietrich My son is now in New England with the Patriots. So, I’m cheering for the Packers because those are the guys I know and love, and I’m cheering for the Pats because it’s the right thing to do. Crazy.

  • ginidietrich

    @GayleJoseph OH! You can be a Pats fan. I’m totally cool with that.

  • @ginidietrich Excellent!

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  • bowdencandy

    @ginidietrich  @jackielamp Can you elaborate further on tracking the number of leads before and after…

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