When Sharam Fouladgar-Mercer first joined us for an FIR Interview in August 2013, he had just launched AirPR as a marketplace to connect independent PR practitioners and small agencies with startups needing PR help. Our next interview came four months later, as AirPR introduced a new analytics tool, AirPR Analyst. Now, nearly four years later, AirPR has shed the marketplace and focuses exclusively on its analytics product.
In this third FIR Interview, Sharam discusses insights he has gained from four years of assessing PR efforts, including a “potential customer number.” He discusses the dramatic changes PR has experienced in the last four years and the increased demand on practitioners to deliver meaningful metrics, as well as the integration of PR with web analytics to track actions and behaviors following a communication.
Sharam also talked with FIR Interviews host Shel Holtz about the pointlessness of impressions and advertising value equivalencies as PR metrics and the role Artificial Intelligence will play (and the roles it most likely won’t play) in PR and PR measurement.
FIR Interviews are sponsored by Thornley Fallis, the public engagement specialists. If you are looking for tools and up to date techniques to engage with your community, Thornley Fallis can help. Find them at thornleyfallis.com.
About Our Conversation Partner
Sharam Fouladgar-Mercer is co-founder and CEO of AirPR, a technology solution to measure the impact of PR. He was an Entrepreneur in Residence at Shasta Ventures focused on consumer internet and the social graph. Prior to joining Shasta, Sharam was a Senior Associate at Sierra Ventures focused on consumer internet, enterprise software (cloud computing/virtualization), and mobile. He served on the Board at Makara (sold to RedHat) and TouchCommerce (sold to Nuance). Sharam began his career as a technologist at Appian, a BPM software startup where he managed the first enterprise-wide tracking system for the Department of Homeland Security. Sharam has lectured at universities, events and conferences, and judged business plan competitions at Princeton, Harvard, Stanford, and Syracuse. He is also an advisor and mentor to eLab (Princeton University’s Accelerator), Dorm Room Fund (First Round Capital’s Accelerator), and Acceleprise (Enterprise Technology Accelerator). Sharam graduated with honors with a BS in Computer Science from Princeton University and an MBA from Harvard Business School. He played NCAA D 1 ice hockey and is fluent in Farsi. Follow him on twitter @sharamfm.