Effectively Using ROI in the PR World

Return on Investment (ROI) is a a concept that many employers are going to ask you about during an interview. Here is a brief way to prepare yourself without actually using the model. Defining the concept is difficult, which is best defined by Resource Management Systems, Inc. as “A measure of the net income a firm is able to earn with the its total assets.” (Resource Management Systems, Inc.). 

How to Effectively Use ROI

Although ROI is traditionally a concept that sales department employees use, it is becoming more popular for PR employees to be familiar with it as well. Where PR employees were typically concerned with getting their company’s name out there, they often, as Vocus, Inc. points out, “…relied on less tangible and more time-consuming methods, such as clip counts and ad equivalency to prove their value to the business” (Vocus Inc., “Measuring the Marketing ROI on Public Relations”). This paper released by Vocus Inc. also mentions that many executives would like to see PR employees use this statistical, tangible data versus traditional PR methods.

There have been multiple studies that show the ROI advantages when used correctly by PR company representatives. In order to effectively use ROI, use the following steps that Vocus, Inc. recommends:

  1. Measure the right content. PR employees frequently measure, measure, measure. Yet often their ROI is not impressive. Determine what is important to your company and measure that criteria first. Pay attention to quality over quantitity, and learn from your previous success.
  2. When measuring, do not compare your company to other companies that are completely unrelated to you. They have different goals and When reporting results, highlight statistical and “dollar-value” information that executives want to see.
  3. When measuring ROI, use tools that are easy to use and that you know well. Learning a new software may work against your favor or take up valuable time you could be analyzing.

Whether you are using ROI for measurement or just trying to increase sales, these tips can prove helpful in your search to find valuable ways to invest your time. And, if you aren’t ready to use these tips, at least you can now say you are generally familiar with the concept.

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