How to measure – focus groups, polls or surveys?

Kirsty_Walden– Posted by Kirsty Walden

Every successful communication or engagement programme should be measured against a set of objectives. Your measurement data won’t just tell you how effective your work was – it will also give you the ability to demonstrate to your senior leaders the impact on the business in a language they understand.

Here’s a short summary of the measurement tools and techniques we often use to determine the impact of our engagement and communication programme


Surveys enable you to collect the most information. By choosing a sample that reflects your target audience, you can be far more confident that the information you collect is an accurate representation of the opinion. You can also follow up more easily, get more honest responses. Survey research also tends to provide clear black and white data which when analysed effectively can lead to further insight into your business strategy.

Focus Groups
Focus groups are a great way to explore the reasons ‘why’ people hold certain opinions or ask more abstract and open questions which will uncover beliefs and attitudes people may not even know they have! They are particularly useful if you want to dig a little deeper into your survey results.

While they have their place, the sample size can be an issue, as rarely will a focus group be large enough to draw definitive conclusions.


If you want to do a quick and simple ‘pulse check’ – many intranets have ‘polling’ functionality built into them so you can gain a quick insight into your audience opinion.

Social Media

There’s a wide variety of online communication tools that can enable you to gather instant feedback.  With so many people now using Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIN on a daily basis, why not make use of increasing awareness and understanding of social media and create your own social intranet?!  Click here to find out how we helped Anglo American launch Eureka!

And…don’t forget good old-fashioned anecdotal feedback. If you hear comments or views shared informally in the canteen or as you’re walking out the door after a meeting – jot them down and add them to your measurement report summary.