What are you hoping to gain from PR measurement?

If you’re new to PR measurement I have a question for you: why do you want to measure PR? As a crusader for measurement I could give you a thousand and one reasons why you should be measuring and analyzing PR results. But the motives behind measurement are unique to each and every PR program, and they play an important role in designing a relevant and useful measurement plan. If you’re just starting out I suggest you take some time to identify what YOU want to get out of measurement by defining your measurement objectives. 

Stop and think about why you want to track coverage and measure results – what do you want to gain? Are you looking to stay on top of the news, find better media opportunities, stay abreast of competitors, respond to competitive threats? Your answers to these questions will help determine what information to capture and how to use it. By defining measurement objectives you can design a measurement program tailored to your needs. You’ll be able to focus measurement efforts on collecting the information that is most valuable to you, and also to the executive team.

A lot of PR teams just go out and track coverage for the sake of having some sort of results to pass along to clients and executives. They never consider whether the results are helpful or relevant. This approach to measurement is a waste of precious time and resources. Clients and executives are looking for competitive data to help them improve their business plans. If you’re going to take the time to capture information – and then format and package it for executives – you want the final product to be something they’ll actually read and use.

Monitoring and measuring coverage takes time and money. To see a return on your measurement investment, you need to collect information and use it to formulate PR strategy. And, to do that you must start by capturing the right information in the first place – another reason to know your measurement objectives.

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