Why is PR measurement so hard?
Measurement is knowledge, knowledge is power. It allows you to assess your current and past performances (and those of your rivals) and plan your future strategy accordingly. This is crucial for planning budgets and setting KPIs. That being said, for many years, the word measurement would send communication professionals running for the hills. Or for a drink. With the increasing recognition of the strategic value of communications, PR professionals have had to demonstrate why their budget allocation is justified, which has seen KPI metric measurement more important than ever.
It is crucial that you understand and embrace the measurement process as a tool not as a stick. This helps you and us better understand your goals and align them with the wider aims of the business. These metrics provide you with logical and intuitive output that aligns with your instinct and requirements, measurement is always a benefit.
But this is not without roadblocks, which is why understanding these will help you develop better PR measurement. Here are some answers to an important three questions, giving you simple ways to overcome any issues you may have with PR measurement.
What should we measure?
There are some basic metrics that should always be measured from a numerical standpoint, which allows you to showcase your performance over a certain period. The top four include:
Number of media mentions
Mentions show that people are having a conversation about your brand even when you’re not even in the room. Utilising a media exposure metric, you can begin to look at the number of mentions over time. This can easily express in graphic and numerical form your PR performance.
Reach indicates how far your message is traveling – how many eyes it’s getting in front of. With Meltwater, you can measure the potential viewership of your generated media through the “potential reach” widget in the Dashboard tab.
Share of voice
Are you interested in benchmarking your brand across the industry? If so, you can benchmark your own performance against your competitors and even your own campaigns.
Do you have a key publication of interest? Do you wish you were published in a particular outlet? By understanding the key publications talking about your brand, you can begin to understand your target audience as well as other avenues to discover new influencers, which may not be writing about you at present.
What is more important? Quantitative results or qualitative data.
Whilst it is always easiest to digest quantitative results, qualitative data can be just as important. Once in particular would be sentiment analysis. Understanding sentiment of your brand in the market can offer a wealth of knowledge. Utilising the Sentiment can allow you to understand what is driving negative and positive press about your brand.
Are you interested in how your business is perceived? Do you have a message you would like to build externally? If so, you can utilising metrics likes Trending Themes and Topic Momentum will allow you to understand the most commonly associated words in relation to your brand number of conversations they have appeared in. This will make a world of difference to understanding the breadth of your media messaging.
Finally, are you entering a new market? Are you interested in your global presence? Understanding your placement globally can be interesting by utilising a “Top Locations” widget to examine the number of mentions you have received in each country worldwide.
What is the business impact of PR?
Would you like to understand your PR performance? If so, employee a tool that will give you a way to easily track how many people you can send your press release too, the click through, bounce back and open rates of each. You may also want to understand the transferability of your press releases on social, this can evaluate the reach of your communications.
What to learn how you can better measure your PR efforts? Why not speak to our team!