As a communications professional, measuring your communication goals with relevant metrics is a top priority as it helps you to understand if you are making progress or not. Communications, whether internal or external has to have goals that align with your organization’s objectives.
So, how can you actually measure how effective your communications strategy is? You have to set the right communications goals and objectives.
Communications goals reflect your reason for communicating in the first place and what you hope to achieve either with individuals or businesses. They also affect your strategy and its implementation. Your communications goals may vary depending on the context involved.
When communicating with individuals or businesses, your goals could be to elicit positive responses from the recipient, cause a change in behaviour with employees, transfer knowledge, gather feedback, foster relationships, or build credibility in your industry.
Regardless of the situation in which you are setting your goals, they can be sometimes hard to measure. But the rule of thumb is to set objectives that are smart, that is Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Time-based.
What Are The Metrics You Can Use to Measure Your Communication Goals?
For communications to be effective, there are certain benchmarks to be considered. In measuring your communication goals, you have to consider qualitative and quantitative data. Qualitative means of collecting data could include surveys and interviews. This provides good metrics information but might not be enough to get the full picture. You would also need quantitative data such as click-through rate, engagement rate and so on.
Your distribution channels also determine the metric you use as different channels come with different metrics. You have to take an inventory of your communication channels. These channels could range from Email, Slack, and Asana to Instagram, TikTok, Twitter, Blogs and so on. Email, for instance, can be measured through open and click-through rates. Apps and social media platforms could be measured through shares, impressions and engagment. At the end of the day, you could decide on what channel works best for you in achieving your communication objectives.
Here are some metrics you can use in tracking your communication goals:
For you to be sure you have communicated effectively, there has to be some form of feedback. It could either be to confirm understanding of your message or to get further clarification.
With internal communications, employees can be provided with surveys to share their feedback whether positive or negative. The data obtained from the surveys could be measured to determine the next steps.
This invariably means that your channels should have provisions for two-way interaction. Is there a way for employees within the organization or customers to respond to your message? Make sure you put that in place.
Open and Click-Through Rates
You can track how well your communication campaign is doing via the open-read rates on the different channels. The open rate determines how many people opened your mail while click-through rates go on to show if your recipients actually read through the message and engaged with it by clicking on links embedded in the mail. This will help you to determine what email content resonates with your audience better.
Content Reach and Performance
You have to observe the extent to which people engage with your content in comparison to other content forms or previous campaigns. The type of content determines the metrics to be used. For example, videos can be measured using the number of views, impressions, likes and comments. The same goes for other forms of content. All of these will help you figure out if your campaign is doing well or not.
Engagement Rate With New Products
It makes sense to properly notify your audience about any new development or product in your organisation. When they are in on the processes, the features and the benefits the development has to offer, they are more prone to engaging positively with it.
Here, your communication goal is to have an increased engagement rate with the new product and this can be measured through the number of downloads or sales as the case may be. It could also be measured via the response rate on social media platforms.
When communication is effective within the organisation, it reflects in the general output. Employees are motivated to carry out their roles better and this positively affects customers. Employees themselves become advocates for the brand, sharing relevant content and attracting more customers. This also increases brand loyalty as customers too can become advocates.
There is an increase in sales and customer satisfaction. It can also lead to an increase in positive sentiment for your organisation and this can be measure through Sentiment Analysis.
For more metrics you can use to track your communications goals and the tools to track them, please download this guide.