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October 14, 2010

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Patricia Pytel

You defintely hit the nail on the head when you said, "Only when fast and easy alternatives are available will AVEs cease to be a temptation." AVEs provide a simple, effective soundbite, and soundbites may be all you get with senior managment to justify your budget. As a PR practitioner, I know I provide value through stakeholder relations, building postive relationships with outside organziations and media, getting the organizations' messages heard and accepted. We are moving more towards social media, and again there are a number of both qualitative and quantitative metrics that are available. I can provide a slew of metrics of how our efforts add value, but often the opportunity is not there to expound on these value added activities. When executives look for budget cuts, they look at sales numbers, sales leads generated, impressions and insertions for advertising, etc. What is the new 'budget line' that can be inserted for PR? Impression numbers are as problematic as AEVs. Although we know that AEVs are evil, no simple replacement exhists.

Bill Paarlberg

You make a very good point, Patricia. PR would benefit greatly from an easy way to demonstrate its value, especially when in competition for budgets and resources. Is it possible to sum up what PR does in a simple metric or two? Do we need to invent some metric(s) specifically for the purpose of communicating the value of PR to the C suite? Most measurement thinkers would say that PR measurement should be used as a tool to improve performance, rather than to justify existence. But if you don't justify your existence, you might get cut out of the budget. --Bill Paarlberg, The Measurement Standard

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