Evaluation matters

PR has a problem. For too long, practitioners continue to prioritise tactics over insights and strategy. This is not news. This is something we collectively talk about – including the need to redress – at events, over roundtables, and in survey results. Yet, even today, PR pros continue to lack the confidence and capability to measure the impact of their work.

I was lucky to share the stage with digital expert and CIPR fellow Andrew Bruce Smith from Escherman discussing all things measurement and evaluation at the final OASIS #CymruConnect event on Scoring. For those who don’t know about our collaborative OASIS series in Wales, you can read all about it here.

Effective evaluation starts with effective objective setting. Campaigns often fail when it comes to measurement because they did not set SMART (or C-SMART, according to Evaluation 2.0 Framework) objectives to start with. Without measurable and specific objectives, it is difficult to a) measure in live time to see what works and what doesn’t, in order to readjust and focus; b) measure effectively to see whether the campaign delivered tangible outcomes and organisational impact. This is where the OASIS and Evaluation 2.0 Frameworks come in.

Whilst I covered the Evaluation 2.0 Framework, including how to use it in practice, Andrew took us on a whistle-stop tour of tips, tricks and hacks to ensure evaluation doesn’t have to be a chore. “Online measurement on a budget” was the name of his presentation and it did exactly what it said on the tin. From Google Analytics and Google Data Studio, to Buzz Sumo, Similar Web, and Zapier, Andrew showed us how to maximise tools for reporting – including turning the more traditional Google Alerts to automate reports on press coverage!

With over 70 PR practitioners in attendance, this was a great way to end the year and wrap up our successful OASIS series. Keep an eye out for our collaboration in 2020 – I hope to see you at one of our events!

This article was written by Shayoni Lynn, Director at Lynn PR.

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