What do clients expect from their PR and media evaluation?
As a PR professional you need to demonstrate that your work is achieving positive results and impact for your clients. One key method is measuring the amount of media coverage you have generated.
Marie Dolle, international marketing manager at media intelligence specialist Press Index, points out that in today's fragmented media industry, the media monitoring challenges are considerable. She explains: “Clients typically expect a physical count of articles as well as a summary profile of their coverage. This can include international, national, regional and local media coverage across multi-channels – including circulation figures, time periods and media value (for example, advertising value equivalence or ROI). Assessing coverage of agreed key messages for a client in agreed top-tier media is another metric which can be analysed and valued to assess campaign effectiveness and return on investment.”
The good news is that modern evaluation methods mean it is much easier for PROs to gather proof of their success. And even better, they can gather it faster than ever before. As Dolle says: “The arrival of digital technology and online access to press clippings has given PROs the ability to quickly access and review their media coverage across multiple channels. Today’s media analysis tools can be used to speedily produce reports which can include estimated media values for selected coverage.”
The arrival of social media has also seen a range of tools for monitoring online conversations that relate to particular brands or subjects. Some offer built-in engagement or interactive components that enable PROs to enter into these conversations on behalf of their clients or themselves.
Discussing one tool that is useful for evaluation, Dolle naturally chooses Press Index’s free and multimedia search engine and news alerts service Pickanews. She adds: “This offers reliable and comprehensive access to relevant print, online and social media, as well as broadcast media in some countries. It enables you to research recent stories across the UK and key European media channels.”
The tool lets users review and measure comparative media coverage by a range of criteria including country, media type, themes, source and sector, and Dolle emphasises that this can be invaluable for PR professionals needing to demonstrate to clients the value of their work and its potential impact in terms of the flow of their key messaging into the media.
One particular benefit of Pickanews is that it’s free – other firms charge for such a service. Dolle adds that another benefit is that it saves time and provides reassurance that relevant coverage is being picked up: “Time is money, reassurance is invaluable in an uncertain world, and relevancy saves time and enables focus.“
And when it comes to helping you win business, Dolle says that Pickanews allows easy access to a range of coverage that will typically prove invaluable for preparing winning PR agency pitches. She concludes: “Winning pitches make money. Losing pitches cost money.”
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