Today’s post is the second in that series, to help us understand how we can enhance the evaluation efforts we’re already putting forth.
Our guest presenter was Jon Meakin, Global Head of Strategic Services for Grayling PR, and founding chair of AMEC’s Agency Group where, earlier this year, he established an initiative designed to embed measurement and evaluation best practices throughout the agency sector called ‘Common Ground’.
Jon believes the reason so many communicators are clinging to old measurement practices is because we don’t really know what to do, how to change, or where to begin—not because we don’t recognize there are better ways of doing it.
A common refrain of in-house PR professionals under pressure is concerns about budgets, increasing focus on ROI (return on investment), and being able to prove success.
The ability to prove our worth and demonstrate tangible results is of the utmost importance.
While Jon says the list of reasons is “probably as long as your arm”, he believes there are five top reasons.
So, why should we even bother? Why should we spend 10-15% of our budget on evaluation?
I really like what Jon said here, “We need to not just be recorders of history, but forward-looking at what works and what we should do more of in the future.”
Jon believes there are three keys to getting started. First, stop what you are doing! Second, study best practices, and make use of available resources—like those that AMEC offers. And third, acknowledge that measurement and evaluation is a journey.
There seems to be a great fear factor that if we can’t get everything perfect, why should we even start. But Jon says any step along that journey is a good thing.
It could take one, three, or even five years before you get to the point where everything is fully integrated, forward-looking and offers insights about how you and your organization should move forward in the future. And, the best time to begin is NOW!
NOTE: Please keep in mind, this is by no means a full transcript of the webinar—there was so much great information! I strongly encourage you to watch and listen to the full playback of the webinar, including the Q&A at the end.
What are you and your organization doing to move your evaluation efforts forward? We want to hear from you! Feel free to share your experiences and/or thoughts with us in the comments section or on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn—whatever works for you.