Now that we’ve wrapped up a blog series on when to do media relations, let’s take a look at measuring media relations success.
As measuring media relations isn’t an exact science, communicators often have debated appropriate metrics. Some don’t quite cut it, such as advertising equivalency and the use of multipliers. So in 2010, communication leaders from the International Association for the Measurement and Evaluation of Communication (AMEC) met in Barcelona to agree upon an overarching framework for effective public relations and communication measurement. The result? The Barcelona Declaration of Measurement Principles.
In 2015, AMEC leaders convened once again to update the Barcelona Principles from focusing on “what not to do” to guidance on “what to do.”
Here’s a look at the updated 2015 Barcelona Principles.
- Principle 1: Goal Setting and Measurement are Fundamental to Communication and Public Relations. “The updated Principles recognize that they can be applied to the larger communication function of any organization, government, company or brand globally. In fact, measurement, evaluation and goal-setting should be holistic across media and paid, earned, owned and shared channels.”
- Principle 2: Measuring Communication Outcomes is Recommended Versus Only Measuring Outputs. “The use of qualitative methods (along with quantitative) should be used as appropriate. Advocacy (also) is an outcome that can (and should) be measured.”
- Principle 3: The Effect on Organizational Performance Can and Should Be Measured Where Possible. “Communications impact more than just business results; rather communications can impact the overall performance of an organization. To do this, organizations must have, and practitioners must understand, integrated marketing and communication models. The PR channel does not exist in a silo, nor should PR measures.”
- Principle 4: Measurement and Evaluation Require Both Qualitative and Quantitative Methods. “Qualitative measures are often needed in order to explain ‘the why’ behind the quantitative outcomes. In addition (practitioners) need focus on measuring performance (be it positive, negative or neutral), and avoid making assumptions that results will always be positive or ‘successful.'”
- Principle 5: AVEs are not the Value of Communications. “Advertising Value Equivalents (AVEs) measure the cost of media space or time and do not measure the value of PR or communication, media content, earned media, etc.”
- Principle 6: Social Media Can and Should be Measured Consistently with Other Media Channels. “Social media measurement tools have evolved to a point where there is greater potential for consistent measurement on engagement, along with quantity and quality.”
- Principle 7: Measurement and Evaluation Should be Transparent, Consistent and Valid. “(An effort should be made) to ensure quantitative methods are reliable and replicable and qualitative methods are trustworthy.”
As you undertake setting goals for your next media relations of communications campaign, remember to incorporate the Barcelona Principles.