Posts filed under ‘Web metrics’

Top metrics for social media

social-media-metrics-that-matter-v2-01Like many, you may be confused as to what you should measure on the social media platforms you are using for your communications.

Well, Katie Delahaye Paine, aka  The Measurement Queen, has offered her valuable advice on the top five social media metrics you should be measuring:

  1. Net increase in share of desirable conversation
  2. Top five performing pieces of content, measured by conversion
  3. Percentage increase in conversions
  4. Net growth in high­ quality engagement
  5. Cost­-effectiveness comparison

I really like the focus on engagement; read more here (pdf) where Katie explains each metric for you.

June 8, 2017 at 3:24 pm Leave a comment

Beyond online vanity metrics

Here is a very interesting study (pdf) from the Mobilisation Lab on what counts and doesn’t for online metrics and campaigns.

The study looks at what they call “vanity metrics” for online campaigns that they define as “data that are easily manipulated, are biased toward the short-term, often paint a rosy picture of program success, or do not help campaigners make wise strategic decisions”. Examples of vanity metrics include: number of petition signatures; web traffic, number of “opens” (of emails I guess).

So what do they recommend campaigns should be measuring?

They have plenty of good suggestions and insights. Here are some of the metrics they mentioned that could be more significant (and possible to measure online):

  • Monthly members returning for action
  • Actions per member (rather than size of lists)
  • Number of members actively part of a campaign

View the study here (pdf)>>

July 28, 2015 at 8:28 am 1 comment

A pragmatic guide to monitoring and evaluating research communications using digital tools

Here is a very comprehensive post from the On Think Tanks blog that explains an approach for using digital tools to monitor and evaluate research communications for a think tank (ODI).

The approach taken relates online measurement tools to four levels of assessing influence of communications on policy (an aim of research communications):

  • Management, outputs, uptake, outcomes and impact.

The last level, outcomes and impact is of course the hardest to measure with digital tools. But I think if you have access to your target audiences, this can be done through in-depth interviews or more simply through email surveys to ask how they have used the research products  – which can give then provide an indication of the role they have taken in influencing policy.

View the full post here>>

January 11, 2012 at 7:07 pm 1 comment

Measuring success in online communities – part 2

Further to my earlier post on measuring online communities, I had the opportunity last weekend to present a module on this subject to a group of students following the SAWI diploma on “Spécialiste en management de communautés & médias sociaux”.

The slides used for this presentation are found below – they are in French – English translation will come….soon!

March 16, 2011 at 7:51 am Leave a comment

Employee engagement is cool. Employee surveys are not

Using Google Analytics to track the relative value of your Offer
Some lessons for the communications Evaluation profession

It is some time since I looked at my Google Analytics account. A pity, because it can reveal some dramatic insights into global trends. And the quality and mine-ability of the data is improving month by month.

I wanted to see what was happening in Benchpoint’s main market place, which is specialist on line surveys of employee opinion in large companies. So I looked up “employee surveys”. I was surprised (and shocked) to see that Google searches for this had declined since their peak in 2004 to virtual insignificance.

Searches for employee surveys

Google searches for "Employee Surveys"

This was worrying, because our experience is that the sector is alive and well, with growing competition.

On the whole, we advise against general employee surveys, preferring surveys which gain insight into specific areas.

So I contrasted this with a search for  “Employee Engagement”, on its own. The opposite trend!  This search term has enjoyed steady growth, with the main interest coming from India, Singapore, South Africa, Malaysia, Canada and the USA, in that order.

Google searches for "Employee Engagement"

“Employee engagement surveys”, which  first appeared in Q1 2007,  also shows a contrarian trend, with most interest coming from India, Canada, the UK and the USA.

Google searches for "Employee engagement surveys"

Looking at the wider market, here is the chart for the search term “Surveys” – a steady decline since 2007

Google searches for "Surveys"

But contrast this with searches for “Survey Monkey”

Google searches for "Survey Monkey"

Where is all this leading us? Google is remarkably good are recording what’s cool, and what’s not in great detail and in real time. There are plenty of geeks out there who earn good money doing it for the big international consumer companies. And what it tells us is that, more than ever, positioning is key.

Our own field, “ Communications Evaluation” is  fairly uncool. Maybe we need to invent a new sexy descriptor for what we do?

But note, on the chart below, the peaks in the autumn of 2009 and 2010, when the AMEC Measurement Summits were held. Sudden spikes in interest.

Google searches for "Communications evaluation"

This blog and Benchpoint have the copyright of “Intelligent measurement”, which is holding its own in the visibility and coolness stake – with this blog giving a boost way back in 2007…

Google searches for "Intelligent measurement"


  1. Get a Google Analytics account and start monitoring the keywords people are using to seach for your business activity and adapt your website accordingly
  2. As an interest group/profession, we probably need to adopt a different description of what we do if we wish to maintain visibility and influence. Suggestions anyone? Discuss!

Sorry for such a long post!


March 2, 2011 at 12:33 pm Leave a comment

Measuring success in online communities

At the Lift conference this week in Geneva, I heard a lot of speakers mention the need to measure and evaluate how online tools are being used, for what purpose and with what impact (about time!).

One speaker, Tiffany St James spoke on  “How to encourage involvement in online communities”.  The above illustration shows the main aspects of her presentation, where she suggested some key performance indicators for measuring online communities, notably:

Outputs: how many visits, referrals, subscribers, loyalty, web analytics,  bounce rates

Outtakes: messages and experience for user satisfaction, measuring change of attitude

Outcomes: action-what do you want the user to do?

You can view a video of Tiffany’s presentation here>>

(illustration fabulously done by Sabine Soeder of Alchemy).

February 6, 2011 at 8:22 pm 1 comment

Web analytics and communications evaluation

When evaluating a communications project, I often consider the web metrics aspect of the project, if a website played an important part in the project. Web metrics are statistics generated by tools that measure website traffic, such as how many people visited a web page, where did they come from, etc.

Seth Duncan has recently produced for the US-based Institute for PR a very interesting paper on this subject:

Using Web Analytics to Measure the Impact of Earned Online Media on Business Outcomes: A Methodological Approach (pdf)

The paper focuses on the aspect of referral (e.g. which is the most “efficient” source of traffic for a website) but also contains some intruiging descriptions of advanced statistical methods for web analytics.

May 24, 2010 at 7:41 pm Leave a comment

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