Measuring PR coverage with backlinks

5 min read


Share on

In this blog post, we look at how a PR backlinking strategy can get you targeted media placements to boost your brand awareness while providing strong SEO advantages.

The question we’re often asked is: “How do you measure PR?” 

It's an important one to ask, as many agencies and clients will have their own way of measuring PR and defining the “success” of a campaign.

For example, some look at a publication’s unique visitors per month (UVPM) or its circulation, audience or readership. Others use the much-outdated advertising value equivalency (AVE) metric – physically measuring the size of the coverage and seeing how much it would have cost if they had paid to advertise it.

There are several other methods to measure the results of your PR efforts, but there are issues with each – the main one being that they’re not always accurate and there’s little way of knowing what effect (if any) they directly have on your business.

It’s an issue that has troubled PR programmes for decades, but it may finally be at an end.

Measuring PR – the confusion

Measurement is often retroactively gathered when pulling together campaign reports. It may be that one metric did much better than others, so that’s placed front and centre, while others are brushed under the carpet to show it was all a success.

To clear up any confusion from the outset, it’s worth asking yourself: "What is the most important metric to measure for my needs?" – in other words, “What does success look like to me?”

For example, if you’re a start-up business, you may simply want to increase your brand awareness by gaining as much media coverage in target publications as possible, in which case your key metric will be the number of placements and the size of the potential audience reading your news stories.

If you’re a scale-up or large enterprise, you’ll be more digitally mature and may place more emphasis on lead generation and inbound traffic to your website as a result of media placements.

This is where backlinks come in.

Measuring PR with backlinks

Backlinking strategies have gained prominence over the years, becoming one of the best ways to accurately measure the success of a PR campaign – all without confusing vanity metrics. 

Backlinks are essentially “digital bridges” that go from an external URL to your website – and search engines like Google and Bing love them. The simplest and one of the strongest examples of this is including a link back to your website in a piece of content that is later published in one of your target publications.

This is perfect for measuring PR, as gaining backlinks from high-ranking media publications will tell search engines that your website is a trusted, authoritative source on a specific topic – deeming it more valuable than other sites and placing it higher up in search results.

A study by Moz found that 99% of the top 50 websites on search engines results pages have at least one backlink to their page.

Be careful, however, as there are good and bad backlinks. A backlinking strategy that targets spam websites, low domain authority websites or sites that have little to no relation to your own, can adversely affect your website – potentially decreasing your rankings on search engine results pages and lowering your domain authority.

Also, bear in mind that when link building, it can take an average of 10 weeks per link for your website to go up one position.

Think of link building like working out at the gym. When you first start, you’ll build muscle quickly because you didn’t have as much to begin with, but as time goes on you have to lift more and more to keep that growth up.

PR backlinking strategies

Measuring PR programmes comes down to what you want to achieve, as every single strategy is tailored towards your specific needs and business goals.

What’s crucial is that they all drive you towards the goals that you and your key stakeholders are actively looking to measure against the business goals and objectives – rather than the vanity metrics which, while they may look good in a PowerPoint presentation, can mean almost nothing in the grand scheme of things.

Backlinks are, of course, just one part of this puzzle but, when done right, a PR backlinking strategy can get you targeted media placements to boost your brand awareness while providing strong SEO advantages as well.

See how Huble Digital placed 48% of media coverage with backlinks for one of our B2B PR clients.

Book a free SEO audit

Your website is your most valuable sales and marketing tool, so it needs to be as optimised as it can be. Uncover opportunities to boost your rankings with a free SEO audit.

Heading Text

Sales & CRM

37 min read

HubSpot security and compliance: best practices and automated tools

Explore how to leverage HubSpot’s security tools and resources to mitigate risks and ensure Security and Compliance in HubSpot.

Read more


3 min read

Huble named #1 in HubSpot Consultancy Proficiency and Marketing Strategy Agency on G2

We are proud to have been recognised as the leading solutions provider in the Best HubSpot Consulting Services category of the G2 winter reports. 

Read more

Marketing & Growth

22 min read

Everything you need to know about HubSpot Content Hub

Learn all about HubSpot's Content Hub, including the key benefits and pricing, what's changing and how Marketers can utilise the platform.

Read more

Sales & CRM

25 min read

HubSpot Data Management: 6 strategies for success

This article dives into the central role of data management in maximising CRM potential and best practices for data management in HubSpot.

Read more

Marketing & Growth

50 min read

112 Account-based marketing statistics you need to know in 2024

In this article, we look at 113 account-based marketing statistics that showcase how this strategy has transformed modern marketing.

Read more

Sales & CRM

10 min read

3 sales team structures that set you up for success

Is your current sales team structure helping you do your best work and hit those goals?

Read more

Content Strategy

9 min read

Mastering B2B brand messaging for effective demand generation

This article dives into the essential nature of B2B brand messaging and provides actionable insights on crafting messages that engage with B2B buyers.

Read more

Sales & CRM

12 min read

Enhancing CRM security in HubSpot: beyond traditional measures

Explore both the basic security measures that lay the groundwork for CRM security and more advanced forms of CRM security, in particular in HubSpot.

Read more

Marketing & Growth

10 min read

Is it worth it: What is the ROI of HubSpot Marketing Hub?

Learn more about the ROI potential of HubSpot’s Marketing Hub and how the platform can lead to higher productivity, cost efficiency and customer loyalty.

Read more

SEO & Paid Media

8 min read

Third-party cookies are dead: what HubSpot users should know {Mar 2024}

In this article, we’ll delve into the demise of third-party cookies and explore Google's recent actions to phase out third-party cookies.

Read more
Button Text