The most pressing question in Public Relations (PR) practice is how to measure the effectiveness of PR efforts and the return on investment (ROI).

Understanding how to quantify success and see a tangible return on investments in PR works is crucial for every practitioner.

Measuring the impact of PR and its ROI helps demonstrate the value that it brings to a business. It also helps secure management buy-in for campaigns and allocation of funds.

Through measurements, businesses can understand what is working well and what is not and allow the PR practitioner to make the needed adjustments to improve effectiveness and achieve better results.

By measuring the outcomes of PR activities, businesses can determine PR's ROI and help practitioners justify their budget expenditure.

During the second virtual session of the 2024 World PR Day Festival activities organised by Global Media Alliance, panellists urged PR practitioners to shift their attention from the data, focus on understanding their audience, and factor in their sentiments when analyzing their data.

They opined that analysing sentiments will help in tracking issues and mitigate them when needed before they change into a crisis. It also helps to measure not only your brand but competitors as well.

According to the Acting Director of Communications at Afrobarometer, Josephine Appiah-Nyamekye Sanny, sentiment analysis provides real-time feedback and allows practitioners to act quickly and adjust even in the middle of a campaign.

“We need to analyze sentiments and not just data…how people feel about issues is important as these are usually pointers to the real issues and we can deal with it quickly before it turns into a crisis”, she emphasised.

Emeka Obia, Integrated Strategy Director, Central and West Africa at Publicis Groupe, also emphasized the importance of monitoring sentiments during PR Campaigns.

“There is real value in monitoring real-time engagement. This way you can constantly understand immediate reactions, sentiment, and how people are responding and then you can make necessary adjustments”, said Emeka Obia.

He advised PR practitioners to be clear on their objective setting and always research to have good outcomes for their PR efforts.

Touching on metrics to measure PR campaigns, Senior Client Acquisition Consultant at Meltwater Africa, Michaela Van Der Merwe shared her thoughts on why the need for PR professionals to understand one’s audience when it comes to measuring Key Performance Indicators (KPIs).

“Understanding your audience helps you to know the metrics to go in for”, Michaela said, adding that the sentiments are also a key factor to consider when PR practitioners are developing their yearly strategies.

Moderated by Bridget Gbesemete, Groupe Public Relations Manager for Publicis West Africa, the PR Measurement and ROI session was hosted on LinkedIn and recorded over 70 participants.

The World PR Day Festival continues to highlight critical issues and industry trends relevant to the PR community.

This year's festival will feature a series of events including slush events, masterclass programmes, virtual thought leadership sessions, an industry mixer, and the main summit.

The Festival will touch on key areas such as Sustainability PR, Storytelling, Arts, Artificial Intelligence, Tourism, and Political Communication.

With a special focus on AI and Sustainability PR, this year’s festival will explore the impact of AI and Sustainability in shaping communication strategies for brands, organisations, and individuals.

Moreover, it will examine how PR professionals can ethically navigate the use of AI and how to communicate sustainability initiatives while avoiding greenwashing.

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DISCLAIMER: The Views, Comments, Opinions, Contributions and Statements made by Readers and Contributors on this platform do not necessarily represent the views or policy of Multimedia Group Limited.