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No excuse for lousy measurement in public relations

AMEC’s Measurement Month takes place in September. You should get involved if you haven’t already. The return on investment (ROI) will be high.

amec-framework

Proving a direct relationship between what you do and the outcomes that you achieve is the quickest way to justify investment. It’s the language of the boardroom.

Unfortunately it may as well be a foreign language for many people in public relations. A typical approach is counting outputs or creating proxies for value.

Easy answers are the wrong answers

At its very best, measurement is a performance tool for realtime campaign management.

The challenge for practitioners is that just as no two organisations have the same objectives they won’t have the same measurement criteria. There are no standard business performance metrics for public relations.

Measurement isn’t easy but that doesn’t mean we should dodge the issue and we certainly shouldn’t use flawed techniques.

The good news is that the profession is growing up. We’ve stopped counting stuff for the sake of it and almost all award schemes have banned the use of Advertising Value Equivalent (AVE) in campaigns.

As practice shifts from traditional media as the primary form of public relations engagement, to a variety of digital and social media, the business is getting smarter at measurement. Paid, earned, owned and share media all leave an audit trail that can be interrogated.

Integrated Measurement Framework

In the last five years AMEC members have worked hard to create a framework that helps practitioners define a direct relationship between the objectives of a public relations campaign and the outcomes.

The Integrated Measurement Framework guides practitioners through a series of seven steps to create a measurement approach for a campaign.

It was launched earlier this year with a comprehensive website of resource material and an interactive tool to steer practitioners through the process.

It has become a standard at Ketchum. Every conversation around measurement within the business is framed around the Integrated Measurement Framework.

Best of all it’s free. There are no excuses and I guarantee the return on investment of you investigating it will be high.

Measurement month

AMEC’s goal is for its Integrated Measurement Framework to become a standard part of practice.

Its next job is education. It’s hosting more than 40 free events around the world during September to help practitioners get to grips with the practical implementation of the Integrated Measurement Framework.

Measurement Month, now in its third year, includes webinars, breakfast briefings, conferences, webinars and Twitter chats, in Asia, Europe, the Middle East and the US.

“My goal is simple. I want practitioners to connect with measurement by using the free events to educate themselves about the difference understanding data will make to what they do,” said Barry Leggetter, CEO, AMEC.

There’s an objective we should all get behind – and measure.

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Stephen Waddington

Partner and Chief Engagement Officer, Ketchum and Visiting Professor in Practice, Newcastle University.

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