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3 Tips to Integrate PR into Your GTM Planning

This Week's Buzz


Hi All! This week’s topic is Public Relations. PR planning is usually done on its own. Putting PR efforts in context with the rest of your go-to-market is important. In today’s newsletter, I discuss 3 Tips to Integrate PR into your overall GTM Planning.

What are your thoughts on PR as part of your GTM planning? Share your ideas on The Buzz Community.

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3 Tips to Integrate PR into Your GTM Planning

All too often at B2B brands, Public Relations, and go-to-market planning are separate processes, but in today’s complex digital-first age this is a misstep by communications and go-to-market leadership. Your PR planning must be in lock-step with your overall go-to-market planning efforts.

The benefits of this approach are three-fold. First, it allows communications and content strategies to be tightly integrated into your go-to-market, both strategically and operationally. Second, it aligns the success metrics of PR to business outcomes. Third, it ensures your PR / communications efforts are balanced in terms of investment to your overall go-to-market investments.

Tip #1 - Co-Mingled Planning

Planning PR / communication and go-to-market are typically siloed planning processes at larger B2B firms. One led by the head of PR / Comms and the latter led by CMO / CRO team. Strategically, this creates misaligned PR efforts to drive the overall annual business vision and support revenue / margin outcomes. The converse is true also, without cross-planning between the two teams your go-to-market suffers by not utilizing the strengths of PR / Comms in your marketing mix to drive better results.

Every company operates differently, but there must be an alignment between PR / Comms and go-to-market strategy. This could be a simple of having a shared planning session, or a work session between the head of PR and CMO / CRO. But to see how PR, Marketing, Sales, and Customer Service teams can collaborate to drive market share and pipeline is important in your annual planning process. Additionally, PR is a powerful tactic to drive awareness for a particular initiative. But operationally, the PR team must be prepared to handle it and do all the necessary outreach before the initiative’s launch. But there is another benefit, engaging PR in your GTM planning can help identify the press / industry analyst opportunities that can deliver better results.

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Tip #2 - Measure PR’s Contribution to Business Outcomes

Measuring the business impact of Public Relations is difficult, but not impossible. Mentions, Reach, and similar metrics won’t cut it in the C-Suite. However, integrating PR into your overall GTM measurement framework will enable you to better understand the business impact PR will have on revenue, pipeline, margin, and brand health (NPS or similar). This is important to understand to better estimate the ROI of PR in the context of influencing business outcomes.

Additionally, integrating PR into your overall GTM planning will provide for market level / industry level insight on driving your messages to key stakeholders. One tool that creates value that PR should include in its toolset is social listening. Understanding sentiment in an industry context, for example, can identify initiatives that PR must champion to impact the top line. And put it in the context of your industry and competition. While many C-suite executives see PR as a tactic, connecting it to business outcomes - in the GTM context - will help shed light on how PR can contribute to the business overall. Sentiment after all is a component / influencer metric of your firm’s NPS. And in some cases, it is a leading indicator.

Tip #3 - Budget Wisely

Depending on the scope of your PR efforts, connecting your PR Budget to outcomes is challenging. But in a world of finite resources, it’s important to understand the PR budget in the context of the return on investment. PR agencies and staff are expensive. Additionally, PR tools can add up. While PR is a must-have for mid-market and larger B2B Brands, you should understand the trade-offs of making those investments relative to business outcomes.

So budget wisely with ROI in mind. Similar to what we think about the rest of our go-to-market. Does an incremental PR executive deliver improved outcomes that can justify that additional investment? Or are we better off taking that investment and adding headcount, tools, etc. somewhere else for a better impact on the top or bottom line?

What are your thoughts on PR as part of your GTM planning? Share your feedback on The Buzz Community.


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