AI is getting much better at measuring media, yet many PR firms continue to deploy humans to compile and analyze reports. It’s not a ploy to charge more. Measuring earned and social media entails more than merely evaluating mentions and a human touch remains essential, argues former UBS Canada communications head Graeme Harris.
It’s through listening to the data, selecting your audiences carefully, experimenting and not being afraid to fail that social communicators can figure out what actually matters for them.
For communicators working with a tight budget, it can be tough to find time to post to social media, let alone measure the success of those posts. But there are ways to prioritize social media measurement in your daily work, especially if you fully consider the benefits of doing so. Here are three tips for communicators seeking to bolster their social media measurement efforts without exhausting their teams’ resources.
If you’re overwhelmed with the number of analytics tools available on the market for communicators, you’re not alone. Between free options like Google Analytics, paid platforms like Meltwater and Adobe, and native analytics on social media sites, it can be a challenge to determine where to look to find the data that’s important to your team and company. Especially if it turns out that the metrics you need can’t all be found in one place. But, if utilized correctly, this can be a boon rather than a burden.
One of the things I love about social media marketing is the data. My team and I like to talk about the immediate feedback we get as soon as something is posted. The thing is, the KPIs that we obsess over are not the same ones that matter most to the C-Suite. It’s important to know the difference, argues Allen Plummer, head of editorial & creative operations, participant strategy & development at Vanguard.
Admit it, PR measurement has a PR problem. It’s particularly bad because some communicators resist working with data. Yet communications’ reliance on data is growing. The good news is data expert John Glinski of Vanguard says communicators need not be data experts to garner answers with data to important questions.
It was a logical assumption. With AI capabilities growing exponentially, PR practitioners expected media measurement software to work without human intervention, and reduce costs. It’s not been quite as smooth, argues Graeme Harris, former head of corporate communications at UBS, Canada, argues.
It’s difficult to create a corporate culture. It might be harder to re-shape an established culture. This is what Whitney Drake, communications story bureau & analytics lead, General Motors, and Phil Musser, Boeing’s CCO and SVP of communications, are doing as they move their brands to embrace measurement and analytics. Recently they shared some experiences with PR News.
Google Analytics is one of the most accessible measurement tools out there today, due in large part to the fact that it’s free to use for anyone with a website and a Google account. But chances are you’re not using it as efficiently as possible to glean important insights from your communications efforts. Paul Headley, director of digital strategy and analytics at ZOG Digital, explains that Google Analytics is more customizable than many people understand, and if used properly it can show you the insights you need without the noise of unimportant data to you and your team.
As the PR industry looks forward into the next few years, PR pros are being advised to move away from old-school metrics like ad-value equivalencies (AVEs) and impressions. But what should communicators focus on instead? According to Renee Spurlin, vice president of analytics and digital marketing at ARPR, personas and customer journey mapping are the metrics of the future, and all PR goals should be in alignment with them.