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Measurement & Evaluation in PR: 2007 to 2014 Professor Tom Watson, Bournemouth University.

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Presentation on theme: "Measurement & Evaluation in PR: 2007 to 2014 Professor Tom Watson, Bournemouth University."— Presentation transcript:

1 Measurement & Evaluation in PR: 2007 to 2014 Professor Tom Watson, Bournemouth University

2 Agenda From 2 nd to 3 rd edition (2007 to 2014) Principles Research priorities Barcelona Principles ROI debate Communication Performance Management

3 Evaluating Public Relations, 3 rd edition Published in June; Available in Australia in August London: Kogan Page ISBN:

4 Aircraft instruments

5 Defining evaluation “…any and all research designed to determine the relative effectiveness of a public relations program, strategy, or activity, by measuring the outputs and/or outcomes of that PR program against a predetermined set of objectives” (Lindenmann) Management-by-Objectives (MBO) framework

6 Measurement concepts Input: expenditures on communication-related services; use of financial and human resources Output: Presentation and dissemination Out-take: Awareness; processing of messages Outcome: The desired result Arise from Lindenmann’s typology; Widely applied

7 Outflow -1 Outflow is the economic impact that results from influence on stakeholders exerted by corporate/organizational communications “It becomes visible what communications have actually contributed to achieving the financial and strategic goals of the organization” (DPRG 2011:14)

8 Outflow -2 Corporate communication can add value by supporting service provision processes of other corporate functions or by creating intangible assets Both contributions depend on specific organisational goals and strategy Performance indicators include business-related metrics such as sales, innovations, productivity, etc. or intangible capital such as monetary brand value or reputational capital

9 ‘Value’ as a PR research priority: Delphi study (Watson (2008) 1.PR’s role in contributing to strategic decision-making, strategy development and realization and organizational functioning 2.The value that PR creates for organizations through building social capital; managing key relationships and realizing organizational advantage 3.The measurement and evaluation of public relations both offline and online

10 Barcelona Principles Seven principles of measurement Set by AMEC – adopted worldwide by PR professional bodies Changed thinking away from AVE

11 Barcelona Principles

12 ROI – misapplied language PR sought to use business language Return on Investment widely expressed, inappropriately Related to value created over time by investment in capital equipment Not to immediate results of a PR activity Many PR actions can’t express a financial result (Gov’t; NfP) “loose and fuzzy” (Watson & Zerfass, 2011, 2012)

13 Jim Grunig speaks “I talk more about the value of public relations than about ROI. As I said, you can explain the value of relationships; but you really can’t measure a financial return to compare with the money invested in it. I tend to use the term ROI because PR people want to hear it used. I will now cease and desist from using it” (Likely & Watson, 2013: 153)

14 ‘Communication Controlling’ Controlling = auditing, performance management Central European approach to link corporate objectives with communication objectives Each level can be monitored: Input > Output (2 stages) > Outcome (2 stages) > Outflow Matrix of measurements, appropriate to each level Used by BASF, Siemens, Henkel, Commerzbank, etc

15 Levels of Impact and Evaluation of Communications Results of Communication Processes Output Outcome Outflow Internal Output Process Efficiency Quality of Works Product Budget Compliance Throughput Times No. of Shortcomings Readability/Fogg-Index Satisfaction of Internal Clients … External Output Media Coverage Content Clippings Visits Downloads Impact Ratio Share of Voice … Direct Outcome Perception Utilization Knowledge Awareness Unique Visitors Session Length Reader per Issue Recall Recognition … Indirect Outcome Opinion Attitudes Emotion Behavioral Disposition Behavior Reputation Index Brand Image Strategic Awareness of Employees Purchase Intention Leads Innovative Ideas Project Participation … Ressources Employee Assignment Financial Expenses Personnel Costs Outsourcing Costs … Input Value Creation Impact on Strategic and/or Financial Targets (Value Chain) Impact on Tangible and/or Intangible Assets (Capital Accumulation) Sales No. of Project Agreements Cost Reduction Reputation Capital Brand Value Employee Performance … Outflow ORGANISATION Communication ProcessesInitiation of Communication Processes MEDIA/CHANNELS STAKEHOLDERSORGANISATION Indica- tors (e.g.) MEA- SURED OBJECT Measure- ment Range Levels of Impact High Impact on Value Creation Weak Influence of Communications Management Low Impact on Value Creation Strong Influence of Communications Management

16 Implementation Communication Controlling has four phases – Analysis – Conception – Operationalization – Steering / Reporting

17 Analysis Key Questions Who is to be informed at which point in time or event? In which form and way are the findings to be reported? What kind of recommendations are expected to support decision-making? Key Questions Which data will be collected at which point in time? Which evaluation methods and instruments are to be applied? How shall the success of communications be measured? Which indicators and KPIs can be defined for these metrics? What do communications need to contribute in terms of stakeholder impact and economic outflow? Which communications objectives are aimed at which stakeholder groups? Which new potential assets need to be developed to address these objectives? What do we have to do for that and what kind of resources will we have to invest? Which are the goals of the company for the current planning period? Are these goals clearly defined and prioritized? What are the strategic goals and what can the company do to achieve those? The achievement of which of these goals requires the support of the communications function? Which data already exist in the company? Which data can be obtained with reasonable cost and time expenditures? What is the current status of corporate communications? Implementation steps of Communication Controlling Corporate Goals Communi- cation Objectives Metrics & Indicators Data Collection Steering and Reporting AnalysisConceptionOperationalizationSteering/Reporting

18 Making it work Has organization defined its corporate objectives? Are “scorecards” used? Is measurement and evaluation part of corporate culture? How is the communications function organized? “Strong and visible” top management commitment is needed Close cooperation with management accountants

19 Summary Multiple measurement needed for evaluation Value can’t always be measured but can be evaluated Communication Performance Management links PR with objectives Read all about it!


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