2007 – A number of tools and methodologies have been developed in recent years to measure the impact of public relations programs through media coverage, key audience perceptions and increasingly, return on investment. However, measurement for some specific elements of the PR mix such as speaking opportunities remain more elusive. Yet in this era of increasing accountability, it is important to assess the return on the resources invested and to learn how to gain the best results. This paper provides recommendations on assessing the effectiveness of speaking opportunities.

Speaking opportunities are often sought out by executives as a marketing opportunity to profile themselves and their company to a live audience for little cost. However, the investment in speaking opportunities can be quite significant. Time spent preparing a speech or presentation and traveling to the location can be considerable, for what is often a brief or shared opportunity at the podium. To test the value of these opportunities, we’ve developed a list of measures that can help provide an assessment of the effectiveness and value. These are simple tools that are easy to do yourself, but will provide a clear and cost effective indication of whether or not the speaking opportunities are beneficial.

This is not a hard science and not every recommendation here will be relevant to your situation. You may come up with other ideas on your own or by reviewing some of the other papers on the Institute for Public Relations website. In particular, you may want to refer to A Guide for Measuring Event Sponsorships by Bruce Jeffries Fox.

Measuring the Effectiveness of Speakers Programs
Marianne Eisenmann and Katie Paine

Heidy Modarelli handles Growth & Marketing for IPR. She has previously written for Entrepreneur, TechCrunch, The Next Web, and VentureBeat.
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