PR measurement has the potential to be overwhelming and complex, but it doesn't always have to be frustrating. You can still collect the right data and share it with C-level executives, even if their time and attention is not necessarily focused on your PR efforts.
At PR News’ recent PR Measurement Conference in Chicago, Inga Starrett, SVP for measurement & analytics with Weber Shandwick, shared thoughts on shaping your measurement reports to better inform company leaders.
- Your report should be more storyboard than scorecard. Think about the organizational flow of your information and the story you are looking to tell. Look for cross-disciplinary data sets that help to support your storyline.
- Know your audience. Ask yourself what they care about, and who they will be sharing the information with. Do they have reporting preferences? What is the level of data sophistication?
- What are your KPIs? There are numerous key performance indicators to choose from, and not all of them will fit your situation. In fact, you must guard against collecting data that you do not need or that will confuse your message. You should know up front what your KPIs are so that your reporting will stay on track.
- Manage expectations. Use the data to show what’s real. Know what’s realistic and what’s not, and what is factual versus what is aspirational.
- Provide context. Include information that shows where you’ve been so that your audience will have a better sense of where you’re going. What are other brands in your industry space doing? Are your competitors performing better or worse than you?
Starrett shared another piece of advice to always keep in mind when measuring. "Think about data as a strategic tool that allows you to prove and improve your strategy, course correct as necessary or capitalize on what’s working."
Follow Weber Shandwick on Twitter: @webershandwick
Follow Richard Brownell on Twitter: @RickBrownell