Is Media Valuation Still Relevant in the Digital Age?

media valuation

One of the responsibilities of a public relations person is to measure the results of a company’s campaigns, image, and reputation, including media insertion. And that’s where media valuation, also called centimeters, comes in.

This is a metric that indicates the cost of content that mentions the client if that content were paid for. This is true for print, digital, or radio.

However, while it is still important to analyze the impact of spontaneous media, centimeters are not in the same use as they were decades ago, when the printed newspaper was a channel with a huge audience.

Where did media valuation come from?

Metrics, data and information are essential for any PR person, something that is even more fundamental in the data age. However, using media valuation as a way to monetarily compare spontaneous and paid media has, over the years, lost steam.

A legacy of the times when print media ruled the market, this metric is about the cost of advertising space in different media formats:

  • In newspapers and magazines it is calculated per cm².
  • In television and radio it is calculated per minute.

Moreover, this value is calculated from tables specific to each vehicle. And it also takes into consideration whether the insertion was daily, weekly or monthly, the editorial staff, and, of course, the size of the insertion. 

Because it was created in a time when internet and digital media were only present in futuristic stories, the focus of media valuation was only on written text on paper, and then television and radio.

But if brands and consumers are online today, how does this same metric apply? Well, the minutiae analysis remains the same. However, PR professionals have had to convert screen pixels into centimeters.

Not to mention checking the number of followers on social networks.

Limitations of media valuation

Although media valuation has been adapted for the digital medium and is still used by many brands to identify spontaneous versus paid media, the advertising landscape and the factors that impact a company’s reputation have changed.

There was also the understanding that, besides numbers and prices, other values matter.

Thus, knowing the potential of social networks, other online platforms, and how much the users of these media influence the image of a brand and also the repercussion of a news story, PR planning needs to be updated to keep up with these new times.

3 useful metrics and indicators to go beyond valuation

1. Sentiment analysis

Did a story in which your brand was mentioned have a positive, negative, or neutral impact? This question is not answered by media valuation, because it focuses on “where” it was said and not “how” it was said, let alone how the audience received that content. 

It is sentiment analysis that delivers this answer. Using artificial intelligence, a platform evaluates comments, news stories, and mentions to extract subjective information that identifies the tone of the content.

By combining technology with the human eye, which can provide nuances that machines are still learning, it is possible to collect more accurate data and better understand how the public is feeling about the brand. 

2. Share of voice

Indicates the mentions of a company, brand, person or product in comparison to the competition. In this way, it is possible to reflect on the participation of that brand in the market in which it is inserted.

This voice sharing (or even voice volume) is an indicator that helps the brand to understand the visibility of an action, campaign or the company itself. And this can be used in the development of increasingly effective communication plans.

Due to the fact that this indicator only refers to the quantity and not to the content of the mentions – it is a quantitative element, just like the media valuation itself – it is important to use it together with another metric or indicator. 

3. Association of your brand

Association seeks to understand factors that lead the public to associate your brand with something, be it a feeling, thought, or specific product.

Using this tool, the PR professional evaluates how much and how your brand is remembered by the public. And this contributes a lot in the elaboration of strategies that consider aspects that attract the consumer. 

To identify these aspects, there is the Implicit Priming Test, which works as a game that aims to activate concepts in the consumer’s mind through stimuli such as words, logos, images, and sensory experiences.

In parallel, attributes are used that can be linked to the tested brand, product or service. Thus, this evaluation measures the power of the association. 

The tools available to evaluate the work and impact of the PR industry’s actions are evolving in such a way that some of the metrics and indicators used some time ago are no longer so relevant.

Thus, while media valuation is useful at times, other dimensions must be evaluated in the process of measuring a brand’s reputation and the impact of a campaign.

After all, solid and lasting relationships and reputations should not only be based on numbers, but also on quality.

To find more information about communication and marketing strategies and the most suitable monitoring solution for your business, contact Knewin. We can leverage your brand’s results with our solutions.