Insights from PR’s “Queen of Measurement”

PR Measurement

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Clients want to know that their investment into marketing and public relations efforts have a tangible impact on their bottom line. As we all know, however, measuring the effect of an advertisement or press release is easier said than done.

Sandy Hillman Communications, a Worldcom partner located in Baltimore, Maryland, recently interviewed PR “Queen of Measurement” Katie Paine of Paine Publishing. In the interview, she answers some of the key questions PR and marketing professionals have about effective measurement.

What are the most common mistakes organizations make when attempting to measure their results?

Many professionals confuse activity with results. Oftentimes, any activity is deemed an indication of success without demonstrating any actual business outcomes. Furthermore, professionals frequently fall into the trap of relying only on what metrics are available, such as impressions and AVEs, for reporting.

What are the smartest organizations doing to accurately measure results?

A common mistake professionals in the industry make is trying to prove attribution from a specific activity. For example, questions like “how many widgets did I sell from this press release?” are virtually impossible to answer.

Instead, the smartest organizations agree on an acceptable proxy for attribution that can more accurately measure results.  For example, a more reliable attribution might be downloads of the visitor guide for a travel destination or views of the “thank you” page generated when someone signs up for a newsletter.

What is the most persistent myth about the impact of social media on measurement?

One particularly common myth is that the more social media data points you have, the better. However, Paine points out that not all available metrics are relevant to the goals and objectives of the organization. Professionals should only rely on the social metrics that  the organization, client and senior leadership agree are indicators of movement along the path to purchase.

Interested in gaining more insights into effective measurement from the Sandy Hillman Communications? Read the full interview on the Sandy Hillman Communications blog.

Sandy Hillman Communications is a Baltimore-headquartered team of public relations specialists with global reach and capabilities. The firm is comprised of seasoned professionals who provide a full range of marketing communications services to Fortune 500 brands, visionary startups and government agencies. From corporate communications to consumer PR to crisis management, SHC develops and implements strategic programs that are tailored to each client’s specific needs.

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