I constantly strive to demonstrate the return on investment that PR can generate and I’ve just had a great example that’s very close to home.

Since my partner became head teacher of a primary school over in Leicestershire, I’ve become her PR lackey. It’s an unpaid role but, hey, the boss is great!

Anyone in the education profession will know that all hell breaks loose when a school gets the call to say they’re about to get a visit from Osfted inspectors   because there’s so much riding on it. The outcome can have a dramatic impact on the school’s standing for the next few years.

Schools that are judged as ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ can attract more pupils, which, in turn, leads to more money pumped into the school for facilities, resources and jobs. And those that get a ‘notice to improve’ or are put into ‘special measures’ often find their reputations take a nosedive and their admission rates plummet.

There was no doubt that my partner’s school would get a ‘good’. When it got the green light to publicise its result, I went into overdrive drafting a release and getting a picture to accompany the story.

I knew exactly the kind of picture that I had in mind – which I admit was a little cheesy, but that’s no bad thing, and this was also sent with the press release to local media.

Fast forward a couple of weeks and my ‘boss’ couldn’t contain her excitement when she came home with a copy of a local magazine that had just been published. It had gone with the picture of the school on the front cover – with the full article as the page-lead on the inside cover.

The best bit

That’s fantastic but what really made me happy was the news that two prospective parents had called as a result of seeing the magazine the day it came out to book a visit to the school, with a view to enrolling their children for the next academic year.

What a result.