When you get publicity, how much is it worth in dollars and cents?
One metric commonly used by publicists and others to put a dollar value on publicity is to compare the space or time received to what you would pay to advertise in that media. For example, if you got a one-page write up in a magazine, and that magazine charges $25,000 for a full-page ad, then the value of the article is $25,000. Or if you got a 30-minute radio interview, you determine the value of the publicity by multiplying the radio station’s rate for a one-minute commercial times 30.
OK, that can work when you are a publicist trying to convince your boss or your client that you are worth the money they pay you. But it doesn’t really have any relationship to reality.
The real value of publicity is what results it gets for you. Sometimes that can be quantified in dollars: You make $5000 in sales that can be directly traced to a media appearance. Often, though, it is hard to track exactly what results came from publicity.
And some of the benefits of publicity are almost impossible to quantify. How many clients do you get, at least in part, because you regularly appear in media? The clients may not tell you that is why they chose you, they may not even fully realize it themselves, but it may have been a big factor in choosing your business over another.
Marcia Yudkin, a marketing consultant who uses publicity very effectively, has said that many clients would say they had seen her “everywhere.” Curious about what “everywhere” really meant, she started asking where they had seen her. What Marcia discovered was that if they had seen her mentioned, read something about her or something she had written–in short, heard about her in some way–two times in rapid succession, she was “everywhere.”
Think about that for a moment. Imagine a customer doing research before making a purchase. They do a Google search, and your website comes up, along with several articles you have written or that quote you. They read a magazine article, and you are one of the experts quoted. They talk to colleagues, and one of them recommends you. They look on Amazon.com and find your book. Are they convinced that you are the “go-to” guy (or gal) in your field? You betcha.
This doesn’t mean that you have to have a name or face that is instantly recognizable by the general public. All you need is some visibility in your niche. Publicity can help you get that visibility.
Instead of worrying about the dollar value of being featured on a top blog, or quoted in the Wall Street Journal, focus on the big picture: That all of this goes toward creating awareness and even celebrity that will make you a star in your industry. Then get out there and do it again.