Historically, PR success was proven by counting media impressions earned and calculating Advertising Value Equivalents (AVE). Media impressions are the number of press clips multiplied by the circulation of each publication. It is an ineffective measurement tool because it assumes that the circulation / readership of the publication is equal to how many eyes saw the article. While AVE is a method that equates the worth of an article to its size and suggests it has the same impact as an advertisement of the same size in the publication. Both methods are antiquated and should be left in the past.
Today’s more accurate approach focuses on creating campaign objectives with clear measurable goals. According to the International Association for the Measurement and Evaluation of Communication (AMEC), which set out the main principles for communication evaluation, “It is important that communications measurement and evaluation employs a richer, more nuanced, and multi-faceted approach to understand the impact of communications.”
To determine the success of a PR campaign, start by asking yourself the following questions:
- Who are the reporters/outlets sharing the news? Are they reaching the audiences we identified?
- Have inroads and relationships been built with influential reporters?
- Was coverage garnered in top tier media outlets and/or outlets that we identified as important?
- Were the key messages included in the secured media coverage?
- Are any of the key spokespeople quoted in the article?
- Is the website seeing increased organic traffic?
- What is the public sentiment surrounding the coverage?
- Were images included in the coverage?
- Has the overall share of voice improved over time?
- Has the article been shared and reshared on social media?
Measuring the effectiveness of a PR campaign is not a cookie cutter approach. Every PR campaign will have a different set of objectives and as a result, success will not look the same for everyone. For more tips to help your campaign achieve success, check out Jessica’s blog about Why Your PR Campaign Isn’t Working.
Posted In Measurement