How to measure the effectiveness of PR? Mostly, when during a meeting between the PR specialist and his supervisor (education IBA) or between the PR Agency and the client comes to this issue – be sure there is a short, but still a pause. PR professionals gain full lungs of air, to explain the importance of their work to the company’s reputation and success with its products and services on the market. Pause there because one answer to this question is simply no. Haven’t found it yet and not described in the clear instructions.
President of PRP Group, A Weber Shandwick Affiliate Company, published under the title “measure twice, cut once: how to measure the effectiveness of PR?” presented interesting thoughts and research results that and I want to quote. Our respected leaders, too, think that “fighting reputation” is not in last place.
As the reputation of the company in recent years has gained monetary status and are estimated to constitute up to 60% of the value of companies, modern managers are not obligates evaluation of communications efforts to promote products and services of the company. Every year they pay more and more attention oncovin measurements the company’s reputation. According to the study “Protecting reputation,” Weber Shandwick, to evaluate the reputation of the company modern executives often turn to the study of opinions of staff – this kind of research is conducted in 75% of the companies. More than 85 percent use informal communication with stakeholders as a way to get a slice of perception of the reputation of the company. More than 74% of executives are turning to well known ratings, primarily for understanding the relationship to the company and its reputation. 59% of managers engaged in the campaign coverage in the media and consider it an important indicator for assessing the company’s reputation in the eyes of stakeholders.
Interestingly, monitoring of the Internet – which in the past received much less attention in comparison with key media over the past three years gained weight. Consumer journalism – mouth of blogs and independent online media attracts the hearts of audiences worldwide and has the ability to transfer information regardless of frontiers – geographical and temporal. For global companies, this dictates the need to take into account and start tracking.
According to research by PR Week/Cymfony Corporate Survey, which was conducted in the fall of 2006, the modern practice is considered the most effective methods of measuring success in PR:
- Media content analysis – 55.7%
- Press – 51.6%
- Consumer survey – 48.4%
- General business results/market share/sales – 47.5%
- Media-impressions – 46.1%
- The advertising equivalent of 31.5%
- Assessment of the cost of a brand – 29.2%
- Modeling the marketing mix – 24.7%
- Value of shares – 20.5%
Agencies often measure the success of their activities by taking into account “Emacs”, or “media relations rating points”, which takes into account a number of parameters. Ranking allows you to provide a specific score for each article according to the parameters that are important for the company, such as, for example:
- Mentioning the company or brand
- The availability and quality of reviews of speakers
- A call to action
- The presence of key messages about the product
- Scale article
- The comments of third parties, positive for the company.
- The tone of the article
- Lighting competitors
- The number of impressions
Company Johnson & Johnson for work agencies, which act as the press offices of its brands uses these metrics of success, as a number of articles and the regularity of their release for General media list, the number of articles in preferred journals and several subjective criterion – the level of openness and accessibility to the press service, always ready to give an answer to a query of a journalist.
Microsoft in recent years has completely changed its approach to measuring the effectiveness of PR. Instead of calculating the total number of articles in different mass media, now only pay attention to the presence and amount of the so-called “key items” (top stories), the parameters of which are:
- the placement of the article on the page or format of the publication
- review third party
- binding a neutral or positive tone of the article
- status of publication – it must be from the list of first-priority
- the article must disclose to the Corporation a key for Microsoft themes – innovations, technologies, products, corporate social responsibility, security, and others.
Recently P&G began using a new method of measuring the effectiveness of PR, which they called PREvaluate. Using this method, P&G came to the conclusion that a mix of marketing communications chosen for the pilot brands in 2006, PR was the most effective. As noted by Hans Bender, Manager of external Affairs service of the company, PREvaluate includes a detailed analysis of the information concerning costs, volume of publications, audience reach, geographical markets and synergy with other marketing tactics.