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Evaluating your campaign

The Government of South Australia requires the evaluation of all marketing communications as part of the PCAG approval process. All agencies submitting a campaign for approval must nominate measureable evaluation criteria that reflect the objectives of the campaign in advance. All campaigns submitted to PCAG or GCA for approval as part of the PCAG approval process must also nominate a date to return with a formal evaluation.

The two main reasons for evaluation are:

Accountability
All government agencies must be accountable for their expenditure of public funds. Accountability is only possible when the results of expenditure are measured and reported.

Continuous Improvement
The Government of South Australia is committed to continuous improvement. Measurement, assessment and analysis of the outcomes of communication activities allows for refinement and improvement in the quest for improved effectiveness. Put simply, evaluation seeks to determine whether a communication activity worked ‐ to what extent it achieved the desired outcomes, and why.

Evaluation should be guided by the following principles:

  • All communication activities should be evaluated regardless of extent or budget. The complexity and extent of the evaluation will be governed by the magnitude of the activity and the outcomes to be measured
  • Evaluation should be an integral part of the development of a communication activity, included from the commencement of planning
  • Evaluation should directly address the communication objectives
  • Care should be taken to ensure that the objectives of the communications activity are clearly defined, as distinct from the overall marketing or business objectives of a project
  • Objectives should be measurable and achievable
  • The method of evaluation should be appropriate to the outcomes to be measured. This may require that measurements be taken prior to campaign commencement to provide benchmarks for comparison
  • The budget for a communication activity should include an appropriate allocation to undertake evaluation
  • Evaluation should be conducted in a professional and objective manner.

An evaluation is a part of PCAG/GCA approval process and is a requirement following the completion of the campaign. The evaluation is submitted to PCAG/GCA for their consideration. Once approved this marks the closure of the campaign.

If your campaign runs over two or more consecutive years you are required to evaluate the initial campaign before implementing the second year.

 

Writing your evaluation report

When preparing your evaluation report you will need to consider the following topics. Please note that not all topics may be relevant to your campaign, but this is a useful guide:

  • Campaign / Product Name
  • Background - Brief overview of the project as stated in original campaign submission
  • Campaign Objectives - Objectives and KPI’s as stated in original campaign submission
  • Target Audiences - Campaign audiences as stated in original submission
  • Geographic Target - Geographic target as stated in original submission
  • Timing - Campaign timing as stated in original submission
  • Campaign Strategy - Outline the campaign elements and strategies in the campaign e.g. events, radio, press, digital, collateral etc. Use this opportunity to outline what each medium was used for and its success
  • Evaluation method - Outline the method of evaluation (as stated in the original PCAG/GCA submission). State whether all methods were applied to the evaluation of this submission
  • Evaluation against objectives - What are the outcomes of the campaign as measured against the stated objectives?
    It is important to state each objective and its achievement
    Example format to be used is demonstrated in the Campaign Evaluation Report template
  • Complaints/feedback - Outline complaints or feedback as a result of the campaign
  • Budget - This should be itemised as per original PCAG/GCA submission. Please ensure the proposed budget matches the original submission. Please provide rationale for any overspend
    Example format to be used is demonstrated in the Campaign Evaluation Report template 
  • Evaluation Summary - Provide a summary of the campaign evaluation
  • Learnings for future activity and recommendations - Please state learnings from this campaign to be applied to future campaigns or programs
  • Next steps or future strategy - Outline any next steps for the campaign and whether there are plans for the campaign/program in the future. How will the learnings be applied?
  • Recommendation to PCAG/GCA

It is a requirement to have your evaluation report approved by your line manager and endorsed by relevant stakeholders.
 

Please click on the following link to download the Campaign Evaluation Coversheet and the Campaign Evaluation report template.

For more information on the approval process for evaluations and preparing your submission for PCAG/GCA please click here