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Back to messaging basics

A conversation about measuring PR begins long before a campaign launches. Get into a discussion beyond brand exposure with your team. What are potential behaviours or actions stakeholders can take once they’ve read a news release or a piece of earned coverage? List each one, from the most obvious (sharing a link, adding a brief comment) to a more involved one (signing up as an event volunteer, posing a question for the CEO during an online webinar). A campaign can have more than one desired response – the question is whether you will be able to track them.

As you review these actions think about messaging. What information will motivate people to take action? Which words will grab their attention? Again, make a list of keywords from vague to specific.

Once you’ve identified your influencers, desired actions and key messages it’s time to table the plan and play match up. Add the platforms where your stakeholders consume information, and the tools that can track activity. This will keep you organized, allow you to delegate as needed, plan technical needs and create a timeline.

Mapping your ideas this way will also highlight PR initiatives that may require significant planning resources with little measurable responses. In other words, avoid placing all your creative eggs in one action basket.

Next: Can PR be predictable and measurable? Part 3 of 4.

Related: Thinking beyond click through metrics 

This excerpt is from Thinking beyond click through metrics: Measuring conversation in a campaign, published in PR News Media Relations Guidebook, May 2014 

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