PR Toolbox- Measurement
February 8, 2011 1 Comment
The CIPR has announced the funeral of AVEs. I, for one, will not be weeping by the graveside. AVEs are not only the worst example of how to measure the impact of PR and communications, they are also responsible in my view for the denigration of our profession. I have been arguing for decades that it is part of the reason why the profession is not taken seriously by senior management.
When PR agency folk used to complain that they did not get access to the board room, I used to reply, ‘then start thinking like a baord director’. It’s about business objectives and bottom lines. It’s about real value for money and return on investment, and that is about changing perceptions so they change behaviour. That doesn’t involve a spurious calculation of media space being bought by advertising vs media coverage achieved through PR. Those who know me well will have heard my favourite rant- media relations is the LEAST effective tool in the PR toolbox!
So, I am now teaching the Valid Metrics Matrix, and seeing how it will work as a way of encouraging clients to stop thinking about the vanity of seeing their names in print, and start thinking about how to change behaviour through their PR. Because that is what we should be measuring. The media is a means to an end, so measure the ends, not the means. If the CIPR is determined to make a difference here. then every one of the CIPR Excellence Award applications that include AVEs will be automatically disqualified, and returned to sender, marked as ‘offensive to the profession.’ Anyone else think differently, put up the business case, please.