Modern PR is about spurring engagement that moves your brand story forward.

In today’s tech-fueled communications ecosystem, we PR pros shouldn’t feel like it’s impossible to measure our activities. We now have tools available to measure and report on how we’re moving the needle by generating engagement with our PR efforts.

Better Tools Drive Better PR Engagement

It’s crucial for PR professionals to find the connection between data and the art of communications. By using tools that allow us to think about the influencer, their audience and their channel in tandem, and by looking at the intersection between them, PR pros can unlock a wealth of useful insights into how to engage influencers while providing a more accurate measure of engagement.

In order to find and understand those influencers, we must first and foremost track conversations: knowing what influencers are talking about helps us to understand both what message will resonate and what channel to use. Monitoring all public forms of communication coming from an influencer and for all the influencers relevant to your community is simply too much data for a human to sort through.

Luckily, we have access to sophisticated PR tech tools that do the work for us. There are tools available that gather and facilitate the sorting of vast amounts of data from a variety of channels. This allows us to figure out the right message for the right person that starts a conversation to amplify our message.

Stronger PR Engagement Means Measurable Results

By listening to the conversations out there with a Big Data listening tool, we PR professionals can qualify our pitching and stories to stand more of a chance to spur engagement. From that engagement we get the impressions that used to be a core KPI, but metrics like social shares are only vanity measurements that indicate community size and opportunity.

Actionable metrics, on the other hand, are a clearer indication of success. A good Big Data tool will both guide and measure engagement. A tool that allows for measurement of share of voice, conversations by geography, sentiment and more provide us with actionable metrics that allow us to circle back to our messaging program, analyze what’s working, and refine – lather, rinse, repeat.

With an arsenal of quantified results, we PR professionals can be confident in the effectiveness of our communications programs. We have no more excuses for not measuring our activities. These measurements will elevate recognition of PR activities as a business instrument and show that we are moving the needle in a meaningful way.