Category: Best use of a measurement framework

Client/Entering Company: Cision / Museum of London

Campaign title: N/A

Company Name: Museum of London


As the Museum of London embarks on a major relocation and opens a separate site in London Docklands, Cision was tasked with showing how its comms programmes have attracted more people to two locations, measuring the success and effectiveness of its many exhibitions.

Cision also showed how proactive comms programmes have raised the Museum’s presence in both mainstream, and social media to drive footfall, raise awareness of the imminent move and open up new audiences for the Museum.


The Museum of London gets funding from a variety of individuals and organisations, including the City of London and GLA. It has two sites: the Museum of London based at London Wall – which is due to relocate to West Smithfield, Farringdon – and the Museum of London Docklands.

Despite high visitor footfall – more than one million people visited to two sites last year – the Museum is working to increase awareness of its overall offer as it faces challenges with the London Wall site which is located in a built-up area, on a roundabout, and so isn’t easily visible.

The Museum of London’s corporate strategy is based on the following main objectives:

  1. Reach more people
  2. Become better known
  3. Stretch thinking
  4. Engage every school child
  5. Stand on our own two feet

The Museum partnered with Cision to develop a measurement framework (see Appendix 1) to align communications activity and associated measurement with these objectives.
The measurement needed to identify the impact of its exhibitions and profile within mainstream and social media.
In addition it was important to understand awareness and interest in the Museum’s expansion plans as it relocates from the London Wall site. It was also essential to understand the effect on overall visitor numbers.

Reaching, raising awareness and engagement was a major objective, Cision worked with the Museum to segment the public into seven target groups:

Cultural connoisseurs
London insiders
Day trippers
Self developers
Experience seekers
Learning families
Kids first families


Cision used an omnibus survey it developed with market research company Opinion Matters. The survey of approximately 10,000 UK residents asks questions on a range of lifestyle and demographic attributes, attitudinal statements, and media consumption habits. By combining this research with media content analysis it was possible to show how successfully media coverage reached each of the seven target groups.

In addition the research was used to identify target publications that these seven groups read and to highlight any not already targeted. This was then fed back into media planning in order to improve the reach.

Become Better Known

A key strategy for the comms team is to raise awareness of the Docklands site and the planned relocation of the London Wall site to Farringdon, and to understand and react to the public response to the move.

In response, the evaluation programme used survey data from market research company Usurv to identify the public’s awareness of the Museum of London, Museum of London Docklands, its planned relocation to Farringdon and how respondents feel about the location.

These responses are broken down by gender, age, location and income to allow the Museum to tailor its proactive messaging to specific target groups.

The surveys, based on a nationally representative sample of 1,000 respondents, are carried out on a quarterly basis, with results included in a quarterly report. This enables the museum to identify how awareness of museum sites and perception of the relocation has changed over time.

Stretch Thinking/Engage Every School Child
These two objectives are tracked via message analysis within mainstream coverage. The messages – ‘We are the leading museum for London and want to stretch thinking’ and ‘Learning is at the heart of our ethos. We aim to engage every school child’ – are analysed within mainstream coverage, when conveyed by inference or verbatim.

This is strategically important as the Museum aims to promote itself as an educational resource as well as a recreational destination and the report enables the Museum to identify how effectively these and other tracked messages are featured within mainstream reports.

Additional insight shows how successfully specific audiences were reached by messages ensuring the reporting is based on qualitative as well as quantitative metrics. This feeds back into the planning process so that future comms activity is targeted towards relevant media.

Additional metrics

The museum has historically used Advertising Value Equivalents (AVE) as a key metric. Cision advised the communication team to replace this with other more credible metrics.

By combining reach data with PR spend and visitor numbers provided by the Museum we are able to identify important ratios such as the cost per thousand reached, cost per thousand visitors and the number of visitors attracted per £1 spent.


Mainstream and social media content is sourced from English-language outlets. Content discussing the Museum of London is coded using human analysts to identify delivery of quantitative and qualitative metrics. These include the company’s key messages, exhibitions and topics.

The reporting formats are as follows:

Online dashboards

Real-time access to all traditional media analysis via Cision’s analysis tool AnalysisPro, with unlimited chart and dashboard building capabilities and no cap on the number of users. This tool enables the Museum of London to engage and react to the analysis flexibly and fast. Cision’s account team work collaboratively with the Museum of London team to build custom dashboards as and when they are required.

Monthly update

Monthly mainstream summaries, providing an overview of insights from analysed coverage. This enables the Museum of London to monitor the impact of conversation within a quarterly cycle and use the update to identify any changes required in communications activity before the quarter end.

Quarterly evaluation report

Quarterly deep dive reports feature a more in-depth analysis of trends, KPI achievement, emerging themes and recommendations for the Museum of London based on findings throughout the quarter (both mainstream and social).

The report includes key KPIs with actual performance measured against agreed targets ( see Appendix 2).

The Museum of London provides Cision visitor numbers to both sites. This is then incorporated into the quarterly report, with visitor numbers plotted against both mainstream and social media coverage achieved during the quarter (See Appendix 3).

Publication dates of the Museum’s press releases and any exhibition-specific advertising campaigns is also shown on this chart, to identify potential trends between coverage achieved and the Museum’s communications activity.

Additional metrics within mainstream media include traditional metrics as well as tracking exhibitions, topics and messages. A social media overview is also featured in the report, including key statistics on content sources, hashtags and influencers.

Cision implements surveys on behalf of the Museum to enable it to assess awareness of the sites among the public (see Appendix 4). The responses to the questions below are included in the report:

Have you heard of the Museum of London?
Have you heard of the Museum of London Docklands?
Are you aware that the Museum of London has an ambition to relocate to West Smithfield (Farringdon, London)?
How do you feel about the Museum of London’s ambition to relocate to West Smithfield (Farringdon, London)?
*How do you feel about the Museum of London’s ambition to relocate to West Smithfield (Farringdon, London)?

Effectiveness of Assignment

Commenting on how Cision’s evaluation has helped the Museum of London’s comms team adapt its strategy and tactics to make the most of the activity, in order to reach and engage with key audiences, Laura Bates, PR manager, Museum of London, said:

“We use it to see message cut through and work out if they need to be tweaked or if we need to focus on a different message for the next month/quarter. The communications team primarily works to two of the Museum’s wider business objectives: to reach more people and to become better known.

“To do this effectively, we need to gauge our successes and if we’re reaching the right people through the right medium. We’ve worked closely with Cision to share our audience research, target media, key messages and visitor number information so we can accurately track the links between our media relations and what that means for our KPIs. Using the monthly and quarterly reports, we know exactly what works and doesn’t work and can have a fast insight into our media landscape.

“In particular, the awareness surveys about our impending move directly affect the ongoing communications work towards the move and shaping the strategy.”

“We report on awareness, top stories, message cut-through, volume and these stats are shared widely. The awareness surveys are becoming ever more important as we plan to move to a new home in West Smithfield and have put more resources into promoting the Museum of London Docklands.”

Cison’s report also helps the comms team report to its Board. On a monthly basis, and to key stakeholders internally on performance against targets and the leading exhibitions/stories across both sites.

Bates said: “This is incredibly important and we’re always asked for it. Similar uses for the quarterly reports. These are used to report into the monthly Board meetings and our key stakeholders. How has the evaluation service responded to/helped you to meet your business objectives?”

In terms of specific results, the October-December 2016 analysis showed that although media volumes were slightly behind target, the quality and effectiveness of the media coverage was strong:

  • Despite the overall reach being slightly under target, coverage strongly targeted each of the seven key audiences – more than 75% of each audience was reached. Cost per thousand people reached was £0.49.
  • 74% of coverage featured a key message, significantly more that the target of 40%
  • Coverage appeared in 12 of the top ‘tier 1’ media targets against a target of 9
  • Social media engagement increased by 60% year on year from 4,626 posts in 2015 to 7,365 in 2016.
  • Visitor numbers increased from 237,175 in Oct-Dec 2015 to 256,643 in the same period in 2016 and there is a statistically significant correlation between media coverage, especially social media, and visitors. The cost of PR activity for each thousand visitors was £72.
  • Awareness of the Museum’s planned relocation increased, from 34% during Jan-Mar 2016 to 47% during Oct-Dec 2016. Furthermore, support for the relocation among those who were aware of the planned move also rose during this timeframe, from 39% to 49%.

Cision’s insights report has developed learnings and presented the comms team with opportunities for future targeting. For instance, just 15% of all 18-24 year-olds surveyed supported the relocation. But focusing on the group who said yes to, ‘Are you aware that the Museum of London has an ambition to relocate to West Smithfield (Farringdon, London)?’, this leaps to 67%. This highlights the importance of raising awareness of the relocation to generate support amongst this demographic.


Summarising the importance of measurement to the Museum, Laura Bates concluded:

“We are now able to use media intelligence to better target our audience, tweak messaging in forthcoming announcements based on previous message cut through, compare stats year on year to draw comparisons and directly link visitor spikes to boosted media coverage.

All this information is reviewed quarterly and used to inform the next set of planning. Over the last couple of years, the Museum has ramped up its evaluation service. Insights and data are ever more important to accurately plan and deliver high-quality media relations and Cision’s analysis is imperative to that process.”

Museum of London Supporting Material