The Future of PR: Using Data to Make Informed Decisions

Over the past decade, big data has become one of the most significant realities in our modern world. Read on to understand why you must use data to make better, more informed PR decisions.   

David Lislet

April 10, 2023

Over the past decade, big data has become one of the most significant realities in our modern world. Though it continues to evolve, big data is the driving factor behind ongoing waves of digital transformation, including artificial intelligence (AI), data science and the Internet of Things (IoT).


The field of public relations is no exception. It’s an industry that should be using the concept of big data to its advantage.


The PR industry has grown and thrived as a result of its ability to earn media coverage, generate creative campaign ideas and assist with crisis communications for clients, brands and products. Industry veterans rely on past experiences, gut instincts and knowledge to make decisions that lead to the best possible outcomes.


But things are changing, thanks to big data.


PR has become more challenging and practitioners can no longer rely on gut instinct alone, especially as they become more closely aligned with marketing teams that utilize technology and data to demonstrate results.


Keep reading to understand why you must utilize data to make better, more informed PR decisions.


What Is Big Data?


First, let’s start with what big data really means. “Big data” refers to data sets whose size is beyond the ability of typical database software tools to capture, store, manage and analyze.


According to The McKinsey Global Institute, 2.5 quintillion bytes of data are being created every day. That’s enough to fill the equivalent of 10 million Blu-Ray discs!


What’s even more amazing is the exponential growth of data in the past two years, representing 90% of the total data in the world.


With all that data, the idea of reporting can seem a bit overwhelming. Nevertheless, it’s important to capture and collect key PR data to improve strategies.


Why Should You Collect and Capture Key PR Data?


The greatest benefit of data collection doesn’t revolve around how much of it you have - but what you can do with it.


When it comes to PR, you need the right tools to collect and interpret this key data.


Here are 4 reasons why it’s so important to use the right PR tools to assist in data collection and reporting.


    1. Making More Strategic Decisions

Media monitoring and social listening tools, such as those found in Notified, help collect and interpret information, enabling fact-based decision making and client sentiment gathering.

From this treasure-trove of data, you can strategically customize campaigns and identify with confidence specific influencers and journalists to reach out to.

In the end-to-end process of decision making, big data helps remove the guess work in decision making for a well-informed communication plan. It’s not just about your gut.


The data that PR professionals should be assessing for better decision-making includes:

    • Newsroom engagement
    • Social media metrics
    • Customer sentiment
    • Share of voice
    • Media engagement and tonality
    • Investor outlook
    • Press release distribution
    1. Preventing and Mitigating Crisis

The importance of online reputation monitoring cannot be overstated.

Media monitoring and social listening tools can help catch small issues before they start trending on social media and become a brand and reputation crisis.

The ability to catch and react in real time to poor customer sentiment and bad comments can help reduce the risk of a crisis and costly long-term damage.


    1. Staying Ahead of the Competition

Media monitoring can help you profit off your competitors’ strategies.


Being able to conduct real time collection, interpretation and analysis of the competition including what they are saying to clients and what the latter is saying about them, can help spark creative new solutions and stay on trend.


Smart companies know they can learn a lot by investigating the competition. Keeping up with what your competitors are doing not only helps you understand what you’re up against, it can also help you formulate your own winning strategy.


    1. Reporting ROI

Showing return-on-investment (ROI) is something that marketing has traditionally done better than PR.


PR needs to continue getting better at showing campaign success to the C-suite, using key data to prove its worth.


For example, this can be demonstrated through business growth, media placements and web traffic that increased sales. Big data can also reveal customer choices, trends and opinions.


This information, combined with your company’s goals should be incorporated into the campaign plan in order to optimise efficient allocation of resources, reduce costs and improve ROI.


How Can Notified Help You Make Sense of PR Data?


To learn more about how the Notified PR platform can help you tackle big data and make more informed PR decisions, request a demo today.