Making the Connection Through Analytics
This post is written by K.C. Brown, general manager, Cision Global Analysts
Today I learned a new word that I will use regularly going forward: de-math.
A few months ago I found myself at lunch with several technically-minded people and was introduced to Matt Poulton, a speaker at today’s AMEC Measurement Week session. The specific content of our conversation that day has slipped passed me, but the outcome of the conversation was that I saw and thought about data and analysis a little differently as a result.
So, when we started planning for Measurement Week, I asked the organizers to invite Matt. He’s not in PR. He’s not one of those regular voices on the PR measurement speaking circuit, has no name or influence within the industry and, frankly, I had never heard him speak publicly. In spite of some skepticism, the organizing team went along with my recommendation. I hoped Matt would convey his passion, that attendees would embrace his expertise and then make the connection back to their own work in public relations and communications.
Matt came through, and so did the attendees.
Just as I hoped, at the end of the presentation the room of non-technical communications professionals were full of questions. Their minds, like mine, were open to the new possibilities of what it means to understand an audience by watching them online, to predict long-term behavior by how they act during an “introduction,” and how to “course correct” toward outcomes that both parties find beneficial.
As a data scientist for Western Governors University, the outcome Matt is interested in predicting is graduation of his university’s students. But the principles and techniques he described had all who listened thinking they should be doing the same with their audiences and stakeholders.
How did Matt bridge the technical and statistical gap between himself and his audience? De-math. He didn’t try to explain detailed charts and graphs. He used photos and stories, and he spoke the language of PR.
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