PLYMOUTH MEETING, PA: Two major studies have released results in
favor of PR practitioners using the controversial measurement technique,
ad value equivalence (AVE).
Commissioned by the panelists at the 2001 Bulldog Media Relations Forum,
one study looked at the relevance of AVE as a measurement tool, and the
second study determined the appetite of PR people for AVE
The first study, by Textall (a wholly owned subsidiary of Surveillance
Data of Plymouth Meeting, PA), analyzed 43,000 articles generated by
Excel Communications, Lexis-Nexis, and others for the calendar year
2000. News sources included newspapers, magazines, radio and TV
transcripts, and news wires, as well as trade and professional journals.
Audience impressions and ad values were supplied by Arbitron, Nielsen
Media Research, Spot Quotations and Data, SRDS, and American Newspaper
The study found that the quantity and quality of media coverage based on
AVE had a better correlation to sales than article counts or
While the study's authors admit that AVE does not perform statistically
significantly better than other methods, Textall argues that the study
helps put to rest the claim that AVE is not as valid a tool as audience
impressions and article counts.
"AVE may actually have the advantage because it accounts for the
relative market values of mass media space and time," said Gary Getto,
vice president of Textall.
The second study, an internet survey of 4,200 members of an unnamed PR
association, was undertaken by QuickSilver Interactive Group in
The survey found that 86% of respondents said that while they are held
more accountable for media relations results than ever, most are
providing little beyond traditional clip books and intuition to provide
results to management.
When asked which of a list of features respondents would want in a PR
analysis software package, 59% said they wanted AVE.