Mastering Year-End PR Reviews

5th December 2023

Originally posted to

As the year comes to a close, it’s not just the holiday season that demands attention; it’s also the perfect time to reflect on and evaluate your PR activities for clients. Taking a moment to review your efforts from the past twelve months can provide valuable insights and help you set the stage for an even more impactful year ahead.

Hopefully, this isn’t the only review you’re doing this year. Depending on the client, we carry out quarterly or six monthly reviews at Carnsight, as well as an end-of-year analysis. This ensures we’re always on the same page, adapting to their changing goals and focuses and hitting targets.

In this blog post, we’ll explore some key steps to conducting an effective year-end PR review for your clients.


First and foremost, remember to tell a story throughout

Before we get into the specifics, it’s important to note that your review presentation or document needs to tell a story. A dump of information and metrics is going to be hard to understand or at the very least, connect with. Use your data and experiences to tell a story. Where did you start? What happened? Where are you now? Where do you want to be and how do you get there? This should all flow, one section leading nicely into the next.

Presenting your coverage

Similarly, remember that the more visual you can be the better. Showing and sharing the coverage you receive  (within NLA guidelines) is a great way to increase the impact of every piece as well as demonstrate your achievements from the year.

Recap your initial objectives

Before diving into the review process, it’s important to have a clear understanding of the objectives set at the beginning of the year. Again, hopefully these have remained front of mind throughout the months, or if changed, been updated accordingly. Either way, remind everyone involved what your aims and targets where when you put together the initial PR strategy.

Evaluating media coverage

Next, evaluate the media coverage your client received throughout the year. Identify the quantity and quality of the coverage, considering the publications, online platforms, and the overall sentiment. Pay attention to the tone of the articles and whether key messages were effectively communicated.

We use a platform called CoverageBook to track our coverage. This tracks useful metrics like page views and Domain Authority. Ensuring that you have a solid way to track your coverage and coverage metrics as you go along will make this step much much easier. If you don’t have a method that works for you already, make this a key focus moving forward.

We always say that PR is an art not a science, and it can be hard to measure due to it’s nature. But the more data and concrete numbers, such as the increase in media mentions, growth in social media engagement, and improvements in online sentiment, you can provide the client the better. Comparing these metrics against initial goals will provide a clear picture of success.

Don’t forget socials

Social media is a powerful tool in the PR landscape, so make sure you also assess your client’s social media presence, engagement rates, and follower growth where relevant. Look at which content performed well and resonated with the audience. Assess the effectiveness of social media campaigns and whether they aligned with overall objectives.

Consistency of key messages

Evaluate the consistency of key messages throughout the year. Did the client’s positioning remain clear and aligned with their overall brand strategy?

If your PR strategy included specific campaigns, review their performance individually. Assess the goals, execution, and results of each campaign. Identify what worked well and areas for improvement. Consider whether the campaigns contributed to achieving the overarching PR objectives.

Review ways of working

Just as important as the coverage itself is the way that your teams worked together throughout the year. Examine how effectively projects were carried out and how if communication felt smooth and efficient. Identify lessons learned and develop strategies for improvement in the future. Usually very small alterations can make a huge difference.

Seek feedback

Seeking feedback directly from your clients in the session is key. Understand their perspective on the PR activities and whether they align with their business objectives going forward. Use this feedback to refine your approach and better cater to their needs in the coming year.

Plan ahead

Based on the insights gathered, create a comprehensive plan for the upcoming year. Outline strategies to build on successes, address challenges and capitalise on emerging opportunities. Set realistic and measurable goals that align with the client’s overall business objectives. For more tips on kicking off your new year PR efforts read our new year blog.


By following these steps and engaging in a thoughtful analysis of your PR activities, you’ll demonstrate your commitment to client success and position your team for even greater achievements in the year ahead. Remember, the key to effective PR is continuous improvement, adaptation, and a commitment to delivering value to your clients.

Hope this helps!


About Carnsight Communications

At Carnsight Communications we create strategies and campaigns to showcase our clients’ brilliant work through PR, content and social media. We help them get noticed by the right audience, at the right time. We specialise in creative agency PR.

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