No week without new studies
Not a week goes by when I do not get a new study on the table. In the meantime, however, I am no longer responding to many inquiries. Many studies are, on closer inspection, only online surveys with hardly reliable data material. In addition we give now own studies in cooperation with Universum Communications whose methodology has been explained in detail here.
This is precisely why I was interested in a recent study recently published by the FAZ Institute. "Studies in corporate communications," is the name of the work, for which in December 2013 a total of 165 communication decision-makers from all sectors of the economy were interviewed.
Success Factors from studies
Now the topic of studies as a PR instrument could have been an exciting topic if, for example, the credibility of such studies had been asked. But presumably one would have had to ask editorial offices. In addition, the data base with decision-makers questioned by 165 is quite thin.
For me, the only really interesting thing about the study was the question of the success factors: 1 ranked the resilient database (89%) ahead of the high content quality (87%). Representativeness of the collected survey data (66%), renowned and independent partners for data work or market research (65%) was clearly rejected. The choice of the medium, ie the experience and expertise of the editorial staff was even only for 41% of respondents a success criterion. However, the question arises: how exactly do companies measure this success?
Company as a leader of opinion?
What else comes out in the study, surprises me little: A majority of large and medium-sized companies are studies to position themselves as experts and opinion leaders in each product and topic area. The main target groups of the studies are the media and the professional public as well as potential customers.
As the survey conducted by the FAZ Institute shows, 78 percent of communication decision-makers consider studies to be a promising tool. 61 Percentage of surveyed companies have already published studies, most of which also plan for the future.
With studies, the companies primarily want to show competence and position themselves as opinion leaders in their respective subject areas (85 percent of respondents). In addition, the companies are linking the intention to generate media resonance (71 percent) and strengthen their reputation and brand (61 percent).
Target group and dissemination
The most important target groups for studies are journalists (91 percent), the specialized public (76 percent) and potential customers (66 percent). The data and facts should be interesting and provide added value to journalists, media users and customers. One of the main sources of such information is studies published by companies alone or in cooperation with market research institutes.
For distribution, the companies use different forms of presentation. The most common are press releases (90 percent), PDF files (84 percent) and press conferences (73 percent). The printed edition of the study is intended primarily to reach (potential) customers, politicians and other decision-makers (69 percent). Digital formats are trendy.
How are the results presented?
For the presentation of the study, the respondents consider Microsites, in particular, as meaningful websites, which represent the study results multimedial (73 percent). Ultimately, the combination of digital and printed formats as well as press conferences, workshops or roundtables ensure the greatest response in the desired target groups.
The publication "Studien in der Unternehmenskommunikation" can be downloaded from the ISBN 978-3-89981-381-4 for 25 Euro at the FAZ Institute for Management, Market and Media Information.
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