Monday June 24, 2013
Communications measurement might well be a skills gap and the ‘Achilles heel’ of our profession, but as our latest Trends Survey highlights, there is an appetite to address this through training. It’s why we introduced the International Measurement Certificate that we run for AMEC.
Anna Iles, Assistant Press Office Manager at Specsavers, recently claimed an award for her International Measurement Certificate dissertation at the AMEC International Awards (see picture of Anna receiving her award at that annual AMEC conference in Madrid from Evgeniy Larionov, CEO of Ex Libris in Russia and Chairman of AMEC’s Professional Development and Education Committee.). We thought it would be good to ask her what she has learned and why she thinks measurement is important
Firstly Anna, how did you start your career in PR?
I had been working in the Direct Marketing team for Specsavers for four years when the role of Assistant Press Office Manager (analysis & evaluation) in the PR team came up. I have always had a keen interest in learning more about the role of PR and how the department worked within Specsavers.
What attracted you to studying for a qualification in media measurement?
I had been in my PR role for six months when I saw the International Measurement Certificate that PR Academy offers with AMEC. I thought it was the ideal course for me to develop my skills, to understand the theories of PR measurement and to put these into practice.
How has what you’ve learnt impacted the way you work?
The course has given me an understanding of PR measurement theories and concepts that has helped me to make my own work more effective and focused. It is also comforting to know that other measurement professionals have the same challenges.
Do you think the emphasis on research, data and measurement will begin to erode the creative aspect of communications – i.e. communicators will be too afraid to run with an idea that they can't prove the ROI for?
I don’t think communicators should be afraid to produce work that they can’t prove the ROI for, as there are other measures that can be used to show if work has been successful. I think there has to be an emphasis on research and measurement for all parties to understand the vital role and impact of Public Relations.
Do you think modern communicators need to understand research and to be able to analyse data to effectively do their jobs?
Definitely, I think it is vital to understand measurement and to analyse data, as you need to be able to monitor and evaluate whether your work has been successful or not and what you can learn from this.
What was a key learning for you?
Setting objectives and making sure these are SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timed) is really important. It is also vital that you make everyone involved in the project aware of the objectives and that you constantly review and monitor these to ensure they are met.
Read Anna's report here: AMEC_certificate_annailes_110213 And the assignment brief here: AMEC certificate assignment brief January 2013
PS - I'm wondering whats going on at Specsavers - they seem to win all the prizes!