When are digital PR campaign fails really fails?

Digital PR campaign fails

It’s always good when someone backs you up. It’s even better when that someone is one of the world’s largest social networks. So what has LinkedIn unveiled that this Manchester PR agency has been saying for years about digital PR campaign fails?

Put simply, the big reveal is that brands— and many of their marketing agency partners— have been approaching social media ROI wrong. A combination of misunderstanding, assumption and impatience means many social media campaigns are doomed to fail because of the way they are measured. Let’s take a closer look at the research which shows many marketers might be declaring digital PR campaign fails far too hastily.

LinkedIn believes you are looking for returns too quickly

Overall it boils down to one major problem. Companies are looking for ROI from social media campaigns far too quickly. 77% of digital marketers are attempting to prove returns within one month of launch. Taking into consideration that 55% of marketers in the study had a sales cycle of three months plus, expecting to see kickbacks in less than 32 days does sound unrealistic.

We may need to rethink CPC 

When it comes to CPC — or Cost Per Click — things look equally misguided. 42% of digital marketers with a lead generation objective use CPC as the key metric for measuring ROI.

The problem is, CPC does not show the true impact of every pound spent on running social media and other digital campaigns. Instead, LinkedIn recommends using a Cost Per Lead, or CPL, methodology. Which makes sense to us.

We are too keen to optimise ‘digital PR campaign fails’

According to LinkedIn’s survey results, social media and digital marketing campaigns are being optimised incorrectly. Or, to put that another way, we are labelling efforts as digital PR campaign fails, and looking to make changes or cancel them altogether, when they may actually be working well, we just can’t see evidence yet.

This is because the expectation for faster results pressures people into making decisions before they have enough data to guide those decisions. Confused? Keep reading.

digital PR campaign fails

Budget allocation meetings are taking place twice per month for organisations with a short-term marketing ROI outlook

90% of digital marketers are making optimisation decisions within one month, before results are relevant 

58% of digital marketers need ROI to secure additional funding for future projects 

The solution is to look for ROI over a longer measurement period

As you’ve probably picked up on, LinkedIn is suggesting digital marketers and brands adopt a longer measurement period. This should tie in with the company’s actual sales cycle in order to be truly fit for purpose. However this poses one problem…

How long should you wait before reacting to digital PR campaign fails?

This is where experience and know-how become absolutely crucial. By working with a digital PR and marketing agency with an extensive campaign background brands are better protected against digital PR campaign fails. Veterans can recognise warning signs that efforts are either ineffective or going awry early, and these alarm bells sound very different to a simple case of ROI measurement. Not least when it’s based on misleading metrics.


Read LinkedIn’s full report here.


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