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Jed Wylie – Make Your Website Sell: The Half A Press Release Technique

By 123 Reg - September 11, 2013

In today’s blog I would like to give you a simple technique that will help you measure the effectiveness of your PR activity.

Traditional PR can be difficult to quantify in terms of a return on investment or direct sales because it’s so difficult to measure the results.  However, we all know brand awareness is a significant component in business success and that public relations activities contribute to this, but how can you prove that your PR campaign has had (or will have) a substantive effect on your bottom line?

The approach I’m going to outline here does two things; first it will help drive people into your sales funnel and second it will help you measure the effectiveness of your PR.

In order to do this I’m going to use the simplest technique in the PR arsenal, namely, a press release (but you could easily widen the scope of the idea to include other PR activities).

The first step in the process is to write your press release but only release half of it to the press, online PR sites, and so forth.  The trick is to finish the first half on a cliff-hanger which incentivises people to click on a link to the full press release on your website.  (Remember that what’s critical to this strategy is that your press release has its own page and is not on a page full of other press releases otherwise you won’t be able to disentangle the results of one press release from another).

The next step is to create a bridge from the press release into the sales process.  This can be achieved by locating a free giveaway at the bottom of the article.  This forms the basis of your invitation to action.  A giveaway could be an article, a White Paper, some software, a free trial, a voucher, etc.  However, in order to receive the free offering your visitor must leave their contact details.  This could be just their first name and email address (if you want relatively unqualified contacts) or first name, or last name, company name, email address, telephone number, etc. (if you want more qualified prospects). This brings your visitor into your email marketing and allows you to begin a longer term relationship with them (far beyond them just reading your press release).

Now you are set to analyse the metrics.

Next you’ll need to assess how the page is performing using Google Analytics.  (If you haven’t already implemented Google Analytics then get your web designers to do so, urgently!)  When you log in and review the data for the page this is the kind of information you should be looking to assess:

  1. Number of visits to the landing page

  2. Average length of time spent on the page

  3. How they found the landing page (using which search engine in combination with which keywords.)

  4. Comparative statistics (previous day versus today, previous week versus this week, etc.)

  5. Number of times the giveaway was downloaded

  6. The next page navigated to within the site

Now, armed with this information you can demonstrate exactly how successful the press release has been.

So, not only has this strategy given you a means of assessing how well your PR is performing but it has also delivered leads straight into the sales team.

What more could you want!

Jed Wylie is the author of Make Your Website Sell and works for Morgan Wylie a web design and digital marketing agency in the Midlands.