What Metrics Effectively Measure the Success of a Communications Campaign?


    What Metrics Effectively Measure the Success of a Communications Campaign?

    Evaluating the effectiveness of a communications campaign is crucial, and to gain insights, we've gathered perspectives from marketing experts and managers. From setting clear goals and tracking KPIs to recognizing the impact beyond direct metrics, discover the six key strategies these professionals employ, including a focus on particularly insightful metrics.

    • Set Clear Goals and Track KPIs
    • Track Brand Mentions for Visibility
    • Analyze Sentiment in Audience Feedback
    • Quantify Earned-Media Mentions
    • Determine Success with Lead and Lag KPIs
    • Recognize Impact Beyond Direct Metrics

    Set Clear Goals and Track KPIs

    To measure the success of a communications campaign, you need to:

    • Set a clear and attainable goal that aligns with your campaign objectives.

    • Define the key performance indicators (KPIs) that will help you track and evaluate your progress toward your goal.

    • Collect and analyze the data from your KPIs using both quantitative and qualitative methods.

    • Compare your results with your baseline and your benchmarks to assess your performance and return on investment (ROI).

    One example of a metric that I found particularly insightful is the sentiment analysis of the media coverage and the audience feedback. This metric shows how your campaign is perceived and received by the public, and whether it generates positive, negative, or neutral emotions. It can help you understand the impact of your campaign on your brand reputation and customer loyalty.

    Paul Gomes
    Paul GomesOwner // Marketing Analyst, BenWil

    Track Brand Mentions for Visibility

    Mentions—any time your brand is referenced in the media or online—are a vital, data-driven metric for measuring your communications campaign's success. This approach offers a clear picture of your brand's visibility.

    It's an effective way to confirm that your PR efforts are being noticed, reaching not just potential customers but also journalists and bloggers. Tracking mentions can start simply with tools like Google Alerts, but for deeper insights, exploring a range of media-monitoring tools can provide a more comprehensive view of your campaign's impact.

    Marco Genaro Palma
    Marco Genaro PalmaContent Marketing Manager, PRLab

    Analyze Sentiment in Audience Feedback

    In my experience, evaluating the effectiveness of a communications campaign involves tracking various metrics, including engagement rates, audience reach, and conversion rates. One insightful metric I've found particularly useful is analyzing the sentiment of audience feedback. For instance, examining social media comments or survey responses allows us to gauge the overall sentiment (positive, negative, or neutral) toward the campaign. This qualitative assessment complements quantitative data and offers valuable insights into audience perceptions and attitudes, enabling us to refine future communication strategies more effectively.

    Henry Allen
    Henry AllenDigital Marketing Manager, Loyalty Lion

    Quantify Earned-Media Mentions

    To measure the success of a communications campaign, one particularly insightful metric is the number of earned-media mentions. This metric quantifies how often an organization is mentioned across various media platforms, such as broadcast, print, social media, or podcasts, based on specific keywords. Earned-media mentions are valuable because they reflect the effectiveness of the PR team in securing message positioning across media channels. This metric is both measurable and comparable over time, allowing for the assessment of different campaigns' performance and highlighting the PR team's success in enhancing the organization's visibility and reputation.

    Justin Cole
    Justin ColePresident and SEO strategist, Tested Media

    Determine Success with Lead and Lag KPIs

    In the marketing landscape, there are predefined sets of lead and lag KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) that are available depending on whether it is an 'Awareness' campaign or a 'Conversion' campaign, and depending on the platform of communication. The success thresholds for these KPIs can be determined by taking industry benchmarks or by looking at historical campaign performance. For example, CPM (Cost per Thousand Impressions), landing page views, ad clicks, and interaction rate help evaluate the success of awareness campaigns. ROAS (Return on Ad Spend) and successful CTA (Call to Action) submissions determine the success of a conversion campaign.

    Sneh ChandelMarketing Technology Specialist, CST Savings Inc.

    Recognize Impact Beyond Direct Metrics

    Reach is going to be important in any communications campaign, but there can be other goals as well, such as improving sentiment scores, echo markers, etc. Marketing metrics are not the same as they once were. Campaigns about data privacy, consumer choice, etc., have encouraged everyone to 'say no to the cookie,' use non-tracker browsers, or install VPNs. Where marketing analytics was once a relatively straightforward opportunity to show wins and losses, managers and marketers today need to be able to recognize and work with these new shadow metrics.

    When 25,000 people receive an email and you get a 20-25% open rate, but fewer than 10 people clicked, it's disappointing. Then, you look at website traffic analytics a few days later and see that within 24 hours of that email going out, organic and direct traffic to that page jumped by about 1,500. Your email was far more effective than the numbers would imply. As a marketer, you have to be able to analyze and work with this strange series of seemingly unrelated data, make a story out of it, and use it to make informed decisions for ongoing and future campaigns.

    Cameron Corniuk
    Cameron CorniukDigital Marketing Manager, Prokeep