One interesting trend that surfaced in Ragan’s 2021 Communications Benchmark Report is that communicators are measuring their work more frequently. And, they are using the data more strategically with a streamlined focus on benchmarking, identifying the best channels and making better editorial decisions.
According to the study, last year 30 percent of respondents described their measurement efforts as ad hoc. This year that number decreased to 17 percent, with a large increase in monthly measurement efforts, from 24 percent of respondents last year to 37 percent this year.
The report highlighted several factors that influenced this shift. Typically speaking, communicators are more likely to be involved in strategic decisions. Communicators have access to the CEO. The most fascinating trend in the report indicates the pandemic actually provided a silver lining for communicators – which seems unthinkable – in that their value to their organizations rose exponentially. The report highlights that the work of communicators moved to center stage with a shift to the remote work environment, and initiatives such as Diversity, Equity and Inclusion programs.
As our work as communicators comes into sharper focus and play, so does the importance of measuring success. Overall, 78 percent of respondents in the study measure their communications effectiveness. Additionally, the report found that communicators are more satisfied with their measurement efforts. With 41 percent of respondents reporting they are either satisfied or very satisfied with their ability to measure communications effectiveness. This is a significant uptick from the 28 percent of respondents who said the same thing in 2020, which clearly indicates communicators are more focused on evaluating their work.
The Benchmark Report also found that communicators are getting innovative about applying the measurement in more strategic ways. In years past, the focus was on identifying the most effective channels to disseminate your message. That focus has been bypassed this year. The data in the report shows that in 2021 there is significantly more focus on making better editorial content decisions and on benchmarking best practices. The report credits the notion that there is less of a perceived need to gain a seat at the table for strategic decisions, as the access to the C-suite increased throughout 2020 organically while communicators also forged new company-wide alliances.
Beyond measurement, the report provides a deep dive into the data and analysis of the major trends in the profession over the last 12 months, including:
If you’re interested in learning more, you can download a copy of Ragan’s third annual Communications Benchmark Report here.Tags: benchmark report, communicating, Data, editorial coverage, executive leadership, industry trends, Internal Communication, measure, measurement, PR results measurement, PR trends, Ragan, senior communicators