At a meeting with some people from the advertising industry I attempted to explain the chalenge of PR measurement. They were happy with idea of measuring their media – when you advertise if the sales go out it was a success; great result….cause and effect linkage.
With PR it’s all a bit different and success is less quantifiable and the impacts often intangible. Its really difficult to represent PR’s ability to get a bad news story dropped when measuring featured coverage? Often PR is a long-term thing and efforts take time to bare fruit, much in the same way that a relationship builds.
Media evaluation is about finding a way of representing the efforts of the PR function. Commonly this is by measuring media output as this is the most likely PR output. However getting lots of coverage is not the key requirement and the real target for PR is the enhancement of reputation.