The goal of a press release is to get media attention, right? Well, yes and no. The truth is that you’ll have better results if you put a bit more thought and time into your press release goals. There are many different goals that a press release can help you accomplish, and goal setting is just the beginning.
Types of Goals
Number of Reads – This is literally the number of people who read your press release. The more reads you have, the more people you’re reaching. Makes sense, right? However, keep in mind that if you have 100,000 reads, but only 100 of them are in your target audience, you’re probably missing the mark with your distribution, keywords, and targeting.
Clicks – This is the number of people who, once they’ve read your press release, click on a link in your release. Now these links can of course have different goals. If you’re selling a product then the goal for the call to action may be to make a sale. You may also want to build your list or generate some type of engagement. Your goal for the press release, however, is to increase your click-through rate. The sales or opt-in goals are tracked on your web page.
Conversions – This is where you’ll measure the number of people who click and whether they actually take the action you’ve asked them to. Do they buy, subscribe, or otherwise engage?
There are different tools and services that you can use to measure your press release goals. First, you have to make sure that your goals are in fact measurable. A goal, “to increase your reads,” is vague and difficult to measure. A goal to “increase your reads by 10%,” is much easier to measure.
Assuming your goals are measurable, you can look at your options. Press release distribution services sometimes offer analytics, and the number of reads should be included in their reports. Conversions and clicks may not be. You can also set up your web pages to be unique to your press release and then use something like Google Analytics to track the clicks to that page and the conversions.
Beyond Your Initial Goal
Press release goals should be like any other goal. That is to say that they should be SMART goals; specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound. Once you’ve achieved your goal, or you’ve reached your end date, make sure to assess your results, adapt your plan, and take the next step. Goals are only useful if they’re part of a plan and a strategy. Press release goals are no different. Decide what you want to accomplish, create a plan to achieve it, and then see what happens. Adjust, grow, and repeat the process.