We have a bevy of great tools and techniques for measuring almost every aspect of marketing, from click to conversion. Yet in regards to measuring public relations, most marketers feel lost.

After all, PR is unpredictable and subject to whims, breaking news, and sudden pivots, right?

Well, not entirely.

Real patterns and trends drive PR the same as any other industry. The analytics are there, too. You just need to know how to use them. But that's the rub. Many people don't know how or what to measure or what even constitutes PR success. As a result, they pour money into PR programs without even knowing whether they're paying off.

Whether you're managing an agency or an in-house team, you'll need a measurement program that gives you visibility into team performance and helps you evaluate the caliber of the results.

So, with the right tools and best-practices, you can track PR performance. Here are seven secrets to knowing whether your PR is working.

1. Benchmarks are the foundation of smart measurement

Any team can point to a certain number of social shares or a tweet by an influencer and call it a "success." But so what?

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image of Aly Saxe

Aly Saxe is CEO of Iris PR, a cloud-based SaaS platform designed by PR pros for PR pros.

LinkedIn: Aly Saxe