HARD COMMERCIAL EDGE OF PR 1996: CONFERENCE REPORT; Crowe and Bell launch industry evaluation plan

A plan to adopt a standard PR industry unit for measuring media coverage was launched at the conference by National Dairy council marketing manager Peter Crowe and former PRCA chairman Quentin Bell.

A plan to adopt a standard PR industry unit for measuring media coverage

was launched at the conference by National Dairy council marketing

manager Peter Crowe and former PRCA chairman Quentin Bell.



The proposed system uses existing media readership and viewing/listening

data to arrive at a figure which represents the percentage of the target

group exposed to the coverage.



‘If we want to be taken seriously we must be able to substantiate our

means of measurement, and an industry standard in this regard is far

more desirable than just an agency standard or a company standard,’ he

said.



PR industry representatives are in active discussions aimed at securing

access to print and broadcast industry surveys such as BARB, NRS, ABC

and RAJAR which can measure consumer exposure to PR campaigns, he said.



Crowe stressed that the initiative is designed to complement rather than

undermine the more sophisticated content analysis and evaluation systems

already available. ‘Clearly standardisation in this qualitative area is

impossible,’ he said.



He added that the second stage of the initiative would involve setting

out agreed guidelines for best practice on evaluation.



The proposed data service, tailored for use by PR professionals, could

be made available for around pounds 250 a year and ‘could be viable with

only 400 subscribers,’ said Crowe.



The plan was developed in response to client interest by a working group

consisting of Crowe and Bell, Norwich Union communications director

Raymond Wilson, and PR Week editor Stephen Farish.



Before it can be adopted it will go through a consultation process

involving PR industry bodies and evaluators. Bell also urged PR people

to write to PR Week with their views.



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