Blogs  / December 14, 2015

Stepping up PR’s PR

by Erik Wagner, Head of Growth

Day in and day out, PR pros focus on storytelling, relationship building, and painting their client or company in the best light possible. Since we are so laser focused on executing all the time, I’d like to ask something that might throw you for a loop: When is the last time you thought about PR’s PR?

In the spirit of wrapping up 2015 and looking forward to a new year, I wanted to encourage all the PR pros of the world to take a minute, reflect on your work, and then get pumped for what’s coming down the pike.  

stepping up PR's PRI’ll state the obvious; PR pros are damn good at their jobs but just in case it’s a little trickier for you to reflect inwardly, I’ve got some really solid reasons why you should high five yourself as well as a few tips on how you can ensure your best work is yet to come.

Strut Your Stuff

It’s been an exciting year for the PR industry. The PRTech ecosystem is expanding by leaps and bounds and making great strides to help us do our jobs better and more efficiently. Technological innovation is helping PR pros identify what stories are moving the needle, know what messages are/are not resonating, and uncover opportunities to gain mindshare.

Not that it’s a competition but for the first time PR is armed with data, real data, that actually demonstrates the tangible business impact of our work. For years Marketing and Advertising have had concrete numbers to show their value and now, PR is able to sit at the big kid’s table and contribute in a meaningful way to the data driven conversation.

We’ve worked our tails off and it’s about time we have metrics people can really get behind. How cool is that?

Teamwork Makes The Dream Work

It’s easy to feel like PR is siloed off from other departments, but that isn’t written in stone anywhere and why should it be that way? In order for PR pros to do their best work possible, collaboration is a must. As my colleague, Rebekah Iliff, astutely pointed out: When Comms connects with Content, the potential synergy is off the chain.

Think about the infamous PESO model. To best leverage this 4 pronged approach, it’s pretty important to tap the expertise of others to help with the implementation and execution of your integrated communications strategy. When all of the various players are informed and aligned, teamwork really does make the dream work.

Since building relationships is something PR pros do best, it makes a heck of a lot of sense to turn that skill internally and focus on cultivating relationships with your peers across departments. It’s pretty much a guarantee we’ll be better and more productive, or at the very least we’ll have more interesting water cooler talk.

Reinvest Your Dividends

In order to maximize learnings culled from a campaign’s performance, you must ask yourself: What am I going to do with the information I glean from my evaluation?

It’s not hard to get drowned in data, so it helps to have a beacon or two to focus on. Do you want to see a specific key message conveyed? Or a certain audience reached? What about extracting useful information about the brand?

Once you are able to identify the most important and pertinent information you’re after, you can then analyze the outcomes of your inputs (aka your PR strategy). Analysis is all about asking questions.

As soon as you are able to answer nitty gritty questions, the sooner you can reinvest these dividends into your next press push. This involves replicating your successes and tweaking the tactics that missed the mark. If there was some magical equation that guaranteed the exact PR results we wanted, you’d be rich and I’d be out of a job… so the greatest takeaway here is to learn from the past and incorporate it into the future.

So what do you think about all this? Were these PR for PR pointers helpful? We’d love to hear from you – please share your thoughts, feelings, constructive feedback or your favorite holiday tune in the comments below.

P.S. This is my fave.