Can you hear me now? Taking time to evaluate the communication effort

RTG79RqTLRegardless of where we work in transportation communications — state or local transportation department, transit agency or special interest group — we all have messages to deliver and stories to tell.

Have you ever asked how that was going?

Sure, we can track how many news releases we write and some even go further and track what publications actually print stories that include mention of our agencies. But how can we track whether our messages are really getting delivered? Are people really listening?

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Five (Communication) Things I Want for the Holidays

As we move toward the season of celebration, the calendar brings us to the point at which it is natural to take stock in the year and to anticipate the coming year.

The Talking Transportation blog is now a year old. During that time the blog posts have ranged far and wide across the communications spectrum, discussing messaging, tactics and tools in the context of the transportation industry. What you will not find in the blog posts is a political agenda or mode favorites (at least not intentionally). My desire is for this blog to be a place for transportation professionals to pick up insights and perhaps share their thoughts if they are moved to do so.

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Measuring communication? Five tips to help start a performance measurement program

“How’s it going?”

Bump into a friend on the street and you might hear, “How’s it going?” After all, it’s a casual, friendly way of greeting someone.

But get that same question from your boss, project engineer, transportation secretary or state legislator and, the innocent question: “How’s it going?” becomes a challenge for many transportation communicators.

The simple fact is that we in our business spend very little time actually evaluating how we are doing at communicating about transportation. We pump out the news releases, tweet until our fingers are number, but can we really say that things are going well?

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What Are The Best Practices for Measuring Transportation Communication?

Measurement in public relations is a difficult topic. While everyone agrees it is important, there is almost no agreement on the right approach, techniques and data. We live in an age of tremendous technological innovation and data surrounds us. Piles and piles of data. But we really do not agree on measurement.

For the transportation communicator this can be a challenge, especially when trying to build a case for executive support and investment in robust outreach and engagement campaigns. How do we, as a profession, show a return on investment or a proof of performance for well-meaning organizational leadership that may not fully understand our business?

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