The Paine of Measurement
Hello Measurement Fans and Measurement Advisor Subscribers:
Welcome to The Measurement Advisor’s issue on risk and crisis communications measurement. We’ve got guidance on best practices, quick tips, and case studies. See our list of articles, below. First, let’s take a look at recent changes in PR and risk comms…
There’s a growing shift in the perception of PR among senior leadership. A decade ago, a handful of enlightened CEOs grokked the notion that PR is about building relationships and protecting reputation, but they were decidedly in the minority. Most CEOs and CMOs saw (and many still see) PR as “free advertising,” or the folks you call when 60 Minutes is at your doorstep.
Things have changed. When, at last year’s Summit on the Future of Measurement, Mark Stouse reported that he was getting more interest in his innovative marketing measurement system from corporate risk prevention and finance folks than from comms or marketing combined, I wasn’t surprised. I often ask my clients what their ultimate contribution is to their organizations. Nine out of ten times “protect the brand” is first or second on their list.
The reality is that, thanks to social media, #metoo, and a host of other very public embarrassments, a robust corporate communications team is increasingly seen by leadership and, more importantly by investors, as a key ingredient in risk prevention.
Now, none of this is news to most highly-regulated industries, including energy, transportation, and public health. For those industries it is the federal or local government, not the CEO, that dictates the extent to which they need to make sure their affected publics are informed of the risks posed by their products or services. And corporate comms pros in those industries have had to measure the effectiveness of their communications for decades.
Which is a good thing, because it means there’s now a sizable body of research on risk communication measurement. Not many of our readers have time to read through dozens of dissertations to learn about the topic, so that’s why we’re turning this issue of The Measurement Advisor into a primer on the subject.
Here is a guide to our issue on risk and crisis communications measurement:
- For some clarity around terminology, read: How Risk Communications Is Different from Public Awareness and Crisis Communications.
- Just getting started? These are for you: 5 Quick Beginner’s Tips to Improve Risk Communication Measurement.
- The 6 steps of measurement applied to risk comms: The Definitive Instruction Manual for Evaluating the Effectiveness of Risk Communications and Public Awareness Programs.
- Examples we can all learn from: 3 Exceptionally Effective Risk Communication Case Studies.
- From our special data correspondent Sam Ruchlewicz: 3 Phases of a Crisis: How to Use Communications Data to Handle Each of Them.
- Dissecting a buzzword: All Touchpoints Are Not Created Equal.
- It’s been our most popular crisis article for two years: 8 Questions About Crisis Communications Answered by the Experts at IPRRC.
- Corporate Communications should run almost everything, and here’s how: A New Organizational Chart: Reinventing Communications for the Digital Age.
- Congrats! The Associated Press Is the Measurement Maven of the Month