Our current and prospective clients constantly ask us what results to expect from a B2B SaaS media relations program. While PR is an investment that pays dividends in market awareness, recruiting, fundraising and prospecting, it’s an investment nonetheless. IDC estimates tech companies with $100 million in ARR spend as much as $320,000 annually on public relations. And, this number is poised to grow in the coming years.
When embarking on a new PR relationship, whether you’re switching agencies or engaging a partner for the first time, aligning on results and expectations upfront is paramount. Without aligning on what to expect in onboarding, you and your PR team may be on a fast track to frustration.
The most basic reason our B2B SaaS clients hire us: media coverage. Media placements aren’t our only measure of success (we’re also measuring lifts in site traffic, share of voice, sales enablement, the list goes on). But, media coverage is our core deliverable.
At BLASTmedia, we don’t rely on our clients to produce news. We believe in a steady drumbeat of contributed content, compelling data, executive interviews and company news to run a holistic, successful media relations program.
B2B SaaS Coverage Mix
Each quarter we evaluate the coverage that we get for all of our clients at both a client level (quarterly reports) and an agency level. This helps us see trends in what’s working in SaaS media relations, and what isn’t driving value for our clients. Based on coverage from March to Dec. 2018 for our B2B tech clients, we were able to glean some interesting trends.
- Coverage is typically distributed in the same way each quarter – 50 percent news, 25 percent contributed content and about 25 percent included interviews and quotes from client subject matter experts. After assessing this data, we can confidently advise our clients to expect this mix of company news and thought leadership.
- News only drove half of the coverage for our clients. This category encompasses everything the State of Local Search research from our client Moz to a big product launch from our client Moogsoft. And it only includes actual articles written by media, not press release pickups from paid wire services — that’s not coverage. Many companies believe company news is the only way to earn coverage. But, with the right agency partner and SaaS media relations program, this isn’t true. While half our coverage comes from client news, the other half comes from thought leadership.
- Predictive statements get coverage. In Q4, pitching our clients for predictions pieces was an agency-wide focus. We offered commentary on everything from VR in the military to AI in ITOps. Those efforts earned 75 pieces of coverage on these topics for our clients. Nearly 90 percent of coverage included quotes from thought leaders. And, 70 percent included backlinks. The takeaway? Year-end predictions can yield big results for B2B brands with something to say.
- Media covers original research, product news and executive hiring announcements. News coverage for our clients increased as the year progressed; this was intentional. Once we saw announcing original research, product news and new exec hires earn coverage in Q2, we doubled down on those tactics as an agency the rest of the year. We didn’t wait for our clients to give us news, though. We created it from assets our clients were already committing time and budget to – product updates, industry surveys, amassing public data to show industry trends.
Want to learn more about how we’ve used this coverage mix to move the needle for our clients? Check out our case studies to learn more about our SaaS PR agency.