Assessing the impact of external coverage
One of the challenges of being responsible for communicating the policy positions and aspirations of an organisation is how you know whether you're getting through to the right audiences.
I'd be interested in learning how other organisations measure the IMPACT of campaigning and comms.
Numbers of cuttings? Sure - but how do you distinguish between 800 words in a trade magazine or three column centimeters in the FT? Or a sentence in Hansard? Or for different message,s 50 words in the Sun or the Mirror?
Similarly, is two minutes on the Today programme better than three on breakfast TV (and if the coverage is ta 07.50 can you say that the impact is greater than at 08.57?)(Similarly for Hansard, is being cited orally by a minister, frontbencher or select committee chair evidence of a higher impact than a backbencher?). Similarly, how do you balance getting one of your people as a guest on a phone-in on local radio for half an hour against doing five minute interviews down the line for four stations?
And then how do you assess the impact of social media? Should a re-tweet from a celeb or expert be rated as having more impact than two for Jo and Joe Public?
I manage a comms operation with three talented staff - one with background in broadcasting, another with a background in print and a third who's developed our capacity in digital (including social media).
Knowing how y'all assess impact will help me make a more convincing case to my Board when we make our next decisions about staffing and resourcing of work.
I look forward to hearing your take!