In-house PR departments in IT firms are using research and
evaluation (R&E) to justify PR budgets to their boards of directors.
A PR Week straw poll of ten major IT companies found six use R&E in this
way. This compares with four out of ten in the financial sector and none
at all in the public sector.
Gail Hall, corporate PR manager of Intel, says that R&E should be used
to show the effectiveness and impact of PR, and not only to justify PR
spending. She said: ’It is vital that sufficient budget is allocated to
measure the success or otherwise of PR. From my agency days, one of the
most frustrating things was clients who refused to spend any of their
budget on evaluation.’
Three of the IT companies that responded to the poll use internet
monitoring in their analysis. PR Week reported last week that half of
companies in the public sector use this method of R&E.
IT firms do seem to be moving away from the use of advertising value
equivalents (AVEs). Just three of the companies who responded use this
method of evaluation. Eight out of ten firms are using message analysis
and seven are using issue analysis.
The results show that much of the R&E is used outside the media and PR
departments. Eight of the companies polled said that R&E is used by
their senior management and board.