Evaluating communication products

July 22, 2008 at 1:41 pm 5 comments

Organizations spend millions on communication products every year. Brochures, annual reports, corporate videos and promotional materials are produced and distributed to a wide variety of audiences as part of broader communication programmes or as “stand alone” products.

However, working with many different types of organizations, I’ve noticed that little systematic follow-up is undertaken to evaluate how these products are used and what is their contribution to achieving communication or organizational goals.

I recently worked on a project where did just that – we evaluated specific communication products and attempted to answer the following questions:

  • Is the product considered to be of high quality in terms of design and content?
  • Is the product targeted to the right audiences?
  • Is the product available, accessible and distributed to the intended target audiences?
  • Is the product used in the manner for which it was intended – and for what other unintended purposes?
  • What has the product contributed to broader communication and organizational goals?
  • What lessons can be learnt for improving future editions of the product and design, distribution and promotion in general?

The results were quite interesting and surprising. We were also able to map out the use of a given product, like in this example:

You can read more about this approach in this fact sheet (pdf) >>


Entry filed under: Communication evaluation, Evaluation methodology, PR evaluation.

Resources for writing surveys From broad goals to specific indicators

5 Comments Add your own

  • […] i inne narzędzia komunikacyjne, warto spróbować ocenić ich efektywność. Tak twierdzą autorzy wpisu na blogu intelligent measurement, którzy opracowali broszurę dotyczącą oceny narzędzi komunikacyjnych. Zaproponowali też […]

  • […] written before about the challenges of evaluating communication products, i.e. brochures, videos, magazines and websites. Little systematic follow-up is done on these […]

  • 3. Enrique Mendizabal  |  March 15, 2012 at 8:15 am

    Reblogged this on on think tanks and commented:
    Glenn O’Neil writes about evaluating communication outputs. Interesting approach and results.

  • 4. Regis Dudley (@RegisDudley)  |  July 12, 2013 at 7:33 pm

    Thanks, folks! This is great info. Measuring comms products is difficult because there are often so many, and its easy to just leave the person with most authority to choose between a few similar variations of a product. Having concrete measurement criteria helps to ward-off this behaviour and focus on the real purpose of the materials.

  • […] written previously about the challenge of evaluating communication products – websites, brochures, videos and reports – rather than a communication campaign or […]


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