PR Measurement Best Practices – Part 2
Welcome back to our blog series on Demystifying PR Measurement! This week, we continue our discussion of PR measurement best practices with our thoughts on the data and technology that can help you measure success, and an overview of two measurement frameworks our customers use in their organizations.
Get the right data & measurement tools
In order to set the right objectives and develop a solid plan, communicators need the right data. PR planning must begin with knowing your audience, and data has become a critical strategic pillar for winning. Thankfully, there is ample data available to us now, and technology that can help extract useful insights from the data has become far easier to access.
There are multiple solutions out there for you to choose from, including Onclusive. The right communications data and technology partner will support you in all these key areas:
- Understanding your audience and their journey so that you have clarity around who to target now and in the future, what to say and when to say it — helping you to ensure your stories resonate and contribute to improved brand reputation.
- Knowing your customers’ behaviors and preferences so that you can reach them on the right channels at the right time.
- Staying ahead of market shifts, opportunities and crises with predictive analytics — the real value is being able to identify a story to newsjack before it goes viral, or learning about a potential crisis before it happens and averting it.
- Automating your day-to-day and reporting tasks, such as maintaining a fresh contact database, keeping all of your communications in one place, and easily accessing and sharing your performance data with your stakeholders.
- Being strategic in optimizing each campaign and your overall plan, and accurately demonstrating the value of communications to your organization so that you can get more resources and a seat at the table where key decisions are made.
Establish your PR measurement framework
What is a measurement framework? Rather than simply a collection of metrics, tools or initiatives, a measurement framework creates a systematic way to collect the right data, analyze the data to understand communications performance, extract insights for continuous improvement of PR strategies and tactics, and demonstrate the value of communications.
At Onclusive, we’ve developed a framework to reliably measure real business impact of
earned, owned and newswire media content across the entire customer journey. Each step
in this framework is aligned to specific metrics that help determine the quality, resonance,
influence and bottom line impact of every article:
- Content Quality: Going deeper than just measuring the volume of media coverage, you can now gauge the quality of your content using metrics such as Onclusive’s Power of Voice™, which combines relevance, publication authority, repetition, social amplification and article sentiment into a single competitive metric.
- Engagement: You’ve got press coverage — now what? Do you know if anyone is consuming your content, and if so, how much and for how long are they reading it? These questions can be answered by Onclusive’s Reader Engagement score, which incorporates the reader’s time on page, average attention, scroll depth and unique visitors, both for individual articles and in aggregate over time.
- Influence: How did your content shape the opinions of the reader, and how did it impact your brand sentiment and consideration? Onclusive’s Brand Impact measurement can show you this with real-time survey results from your target audience.
- Action: What business outcomes did your content drive, including website traffic, sign-ups, sales and revenue? Look no further than Onclusive’s PR Attribution™ to understand how many times people, after having read a piece of content about your company, eventually visit your website and which specific actions they take.
We call these “metrics that matter’’ because they are tied to the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) that the C-suite really cares about. They can help your executive team to understand the true impact of earned and owned media on organizational success, while arming you with data-driven insights that you can use to be a strategic advisor to them.
“With the Onclusive platform, we are able to track the metrics that matter. Our communications metrics are integrated into our overall marketing performance measurement framework, and we can show our C-suite executives how earned media KPIs like Power of Voice™ tie into the company’s business objectives.”
~ Talia James-Armand, Associate Director of PR and Communications, Edmunds
Another example is AMEC’s Integrated Evaluation Framework, which uses the concepts of outputs, out-takes, outcomes and impact to support you in setting your goals, developing your PR plan, and determining your success metrics. We’ve also added examples of specific PR metrics to this framework.
Get organizational alignment upfront
Whichever PR measurement framework you choose, keep in mind that it will work only if everyone in your organization is on board with using it. This is especially important for large or global companies, which may have multiple communications, executive and agency teams. Make sure to create alignment upfront and get buy-in from all regions, business units and agency partners across the board. It’s also a good idea to collaborate with your marketing colleagues to make sure that what and how you are measuring can be integrated into the overall marketing and business metrics dashboard.
To see these best practices in action, join Onclusive for the Demystifying PR Measurement webinar on March 30th. Greg D’Andrea, Head of Customer Success at Onclusive, and Romain Vezirian, Director of Global Brand PR Content & Multimedia at IHG Hotels & Resorts, will discuss how implementing PR measurement best practices contributes to the IHG communications success, and why measuring PR performance can help you become a strategic advisor to the C-suite.