You may have noticed already that we talk a lot about data-driven PR at SHIFT. It’s not just a topic on our blog, it’s a concept we are encouraged to prioritize in every facet of our PR strategies. We’ve discussed on this blog before how to use a data-driven approach to drafting a pitch, but when that pitch turns into a great piece of coverage for your client, there are data-driven strategies you can take to measure the success of the hit. I work on the B2B tech team, and leveraging Google metrics and analytics to dig deeper into a media hit has helped show our clients the value of securing mentions in niche technology publications.
Here are some steps to keep in mind when thinking about measuring and reporting on the success of a B2B tech hit through Google analytics.
Ask for access
Before you think about taking a data-driven approach to measuring your media hits, you first need to ask your clients for access to their Google Analytics platform. This is a question that you can ask in any kick-off meeting and oftentimes the PR or marketing contact has access to the platform.
In the planning stages, you will want to confirm with your B2B tech clients what is considered a win for the PR program. Of course, every company wants a feature in The New York Times or The Wall Street Journal, and those are always the top priority, but in the B2B tech world, technology and trade publications can impact the bottom-line just as much, and a blended strategy typically works best.
Check for links
When conducting a media audit for a new client, not only is it important to see which reporters are relevant, take note of which publications include external links in their articles. For example, it’s a rare sight to see The New York Times or The Wall Street Journal provide a link to a company website. However, TechRepublic and CIO, two established publications reporting on the technology industry, often include external links as references for readers.
Recently, one of my B2B tech clients in the cloud automation space released results from a survey of IT professionals, and the findings indicated technology and trade press were some of our key targets. In the planning stages, we identified publications that included links to external sites, in the hopes that they would link to the survey findings on my client’s webpage. In the first few days of the campaign, we were able to drive over fifty clicks to the client’s website to help with lead generation and survey downloads.
My colleague Katie Ackerman shared specifics in a recent blog post on how to find these metrics, but the key here is identifying the publications that you already know will include links and putting them at the top of your pitch list.
When outlining metrics for any B2B tech PR campaign, it’s important to never forget the core publications that will bring readers to your website. This data-driven approach will help extend the reach of a trade press hit and positively contribute to achieving client goals.