Univeral Amplifier

Universal Amplifier

Amplifying the topics that power today's PR professional

PR Measurement: What Are Your Strengths?

Part 2 of 3

This post is the second in a three-part series illustrating the importance of knowing your strengths. As my colleague Ben Caldwell put so well last week, “Since 1908, Universal Information Services has been creating great media monitoring solutions for their clients. That is what we’ve done for 110 years because, to be honest, we’re great at it.” That really is such a great point, well said Ben.

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From my perspective, as the Director of PR Measurement, what truly makes Universal unique and complete is our in-house media measurement staff (that includes me). It’s now rare to have a service or vendor that can internally monitor all your media (comprehensively) AND has true media analysis powered by trained analysts. The norm is for vendors to use aggregation and automation, because it is far cheaper to let machines estimate your results and insights as opposed to gaining true insight through analysts. Universal, along with some of our global peers, has been beating this drum for more than 10 years now, and now our customers and prospects are starting to notice.

Media analysis at Universal has evolved alongside the rest of our company, keeping pace with our other innovations like our new Alpha Clips service. This year we’ve introduced a new interactive PR Measurement platform to host our reporting capabilities. We have also incorporated more communications metrics than just earned media, we’ve shifted towards putting value in the PESO model and helping our customers see the impact of their entire communications landscape, rather than just specializing in earned media measurement. Measuring and accounting for your Paid, Earned, Shared and Owned media mentions is critical to true insight.

But in the end, the real “strength” of our PR measurement services comes from your dedicated account representative. Your dedicated representative handcrafts the narrative in your reports, quality checks each result, and virtually becomes an extension of your team. Here’s how our process works.

  • After onboarding your company/organization to our monitoring platform, our dedicated media analyst will start sifting through our content and logging it into our tracking system so it’s ready at the end of the month.
  • Those analysts are constantly reading your news – looking for mentions of key messages, key topics, key spokespeople, etc. and coding all that information into your report deliverable.
  • Once the analysis period is complete, your account representative will then take that information out of our system into an excel document to uncover the insights. Taking the data out of our system allows us to segment coverage to get a better idea of what we are looking at and analyze deeper.
  • Once the insights are uncovered, we’ll type up the report, check it twice, and send it off via a web link for you and your co-workers to digest.
  • Inevitably, questions always arise. And we are here to answer every single one of them. Remember when I said we’re an extension of your office? This is where that comes into play. Having trouble understanding the metrics in your report? Not a problem. Can’t figure out why the rise in your earned media didn’t push more conversion for your most recent campaign? Not a problem. That’s what we are here for!


So given the above thoughts, it begs the question of how you are currently evaluating your communications measurement? If you’re doing it yourself, is it honestly one of your strengths? If you have it outsourced to an agency or measurement vendor, do you feel it is truly one of their strengths?

The hardest part about starting a measurement effort is deciding what metrics are important to your organization – and you might not know what metrics are relevant till you talk to a media measurement professional. If I can answer any questions for you, or give you some starting points, let me know. One of my strengths is helping people find their way to insightful public relations measurement.

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