Maximise your communications budget by measuring its effectiveness

Posted under Advertising, Content, Email, PR, SEO, Social Media, Website

How do you measure and evaluate your communications?  The Association for the Measurement and Evaluation of Communication (AMEC) held their fifth conference recently and the search for definitive measurement techniques became a major topic for discussion again – particularly in the area of public relations.

There is no doubt that any PR or marketing activity must be measured – otherwise it becomes a pointless exercise.  The process must start with the setting of goals and objectives and then deciding how you will know when those goals or objectives have been met.

Apparently, speaker after speaker at the conference stressed the need for simplicity in developing measurement standards.

In the area of social media and digital activity there are endless methods of measurement.  In media coverage terms, some clients still find working out the advertising value equivalent a useful measurement tool.  The majority of the PR industry see that as outdated and largely meaningless.

Ultimately, whatever measurement techniques you adopt, focus on this – how the communications strategy has impacted on business results.  Having millions of extra hits on your website is a meaningless exercise if it fails to deliver more business (if of course that is your objective).

The AMEC Conference in Barcelona back in 2010 came up with seven basic principles to consider.  They are:

  • The importance of goal setting and measurement
  • Measuring the effect on outcomes in preference to outputs
  • The effect on business results can and should be measured where possible
  • Media measurement requires both quantity and quality
  • Advertising Value Equivalency is not the value of public relations
  • Social media can and should be measured
  • Transparency and replicability are paramount.

In very simple terms – set your goals; agree your objectives and work out how to measure the progress towards them.  In these challenging economic times, ensuring that every pound you spend on PR/marketing/communications counts is increasingly essential – so analysing activity and results is of paramount importance.

For more information about the Association for the Measurement and Evaluation of Communications, visit: www.amecorg.com

Peter Corder

A former journalist, Peter founded Media Matters back in 1994, having worked for a number of newspaper publishing groups across East Anglia and the East Midlands in senior editorial roles.

He began the business from converted outbuildings next to his home near Stamford before moving to offices in Lynch Wood back in 2007 to cope with increasing client workloads.

Peter has now stepped back from the coal-face of the business but still provides support to the Media Matters’ team and to some clients.