Trends in corporate communications - communicators recognise important developments but implementation remains a challenge
Organisations are devoting more time than ever before to the evaluation of their communication campaigns and strategies. However, leveraging the power of data for managing communications is still a key challenge for professionals across Europe. According to the European Communication Monitor 2015, only 43 per cent of all communication departments use insights gathered from measurement programmes to lead their in-house teams or agencies. A slightly higher number, 58 per cent, rely on data when reflecting on the direction of communication strategies, and 63 per cent use measurement outcomes to plan new activities. When explaining value to executives in their organisations, only 55 per cent of communicators aim to demonstrate the economic impact of their function.
Although organisational listening is identified as a leading goal for strategic communication, the European Communication Monitor finds it is often neglected. While 78 per cent of organisations have established messaging strategies for reaching out to stakeholders, only 55 per cent use listening strategies to integrate feedback from stakeholders.
These are some of the key results found n this year's European Communication Monitor (ECM), a survey based on interviews with 2,253 communicators in 41 countries. The monitor was launched today at the European Communication Summit in Brussels. A short video summarising the key findings as well as a full report is available online at http://www.communicationmonitor.eu/.
Professor Ansgar Zerfass, lead researcher of the survey, explained, "The study reveals that there is a vast discrepancy between the ambition of communication professionals to build immaterial assets, which they also claim as being valuable to top executives, and their practices of evaluating such impacts. Excellent communication departments are better at using measurement insights. And they collaborate more intensively with other functions in the organisation".
"The findings provide a direct line into the mindset of communicators across Europe", said Herbert Heitmann, President of the European Association of Communication Directors (EACD), one of the co-organisers of the ECM. He added: "The dynamic development of the communication function during the digital age has opened up many new channels for reaching stakeholders. The majority of communicators surveyed in the European Communication Monitor believe the integration of these channels with those already in existence is crucial for a successful communications strategy. Through a continuous exchange with our members we hope to assist communicators in implementing innovative content strategies and data analytics".
Notes for the editor:
The European Communication Monitor survey on the status quo and trends of communication management across Europe is jointly organised by the European Public Relations Education and Research Association (EUPRERA) and the European Association of Communication Directors (EACD). Supported by PRIME Research International, a global leader in strategic communication research, the international survey is based on replies from 2,253 communication professionals in 41 countries. A research group of professors from leading universities across the continent, led by Professor Ansgar Zerfass, has conducted the research for the ninth year running. It is widely recognised as the largest study in the field of strategic communication worldwide.
A free PDF report with full results as well as a video featuring highlights from the study is available at http://www.communicationmonitor.eu/
Professor Dr. Ansgar Zerfass, Lead Researcher, EUPRERA, firstname.lastname@example.org, Phone +49 341 97 35040
Dr. Herbert Heitmann, President, EACD, email@example.com, Phone +32 2 219 22 90