Practical guide to evaluating audience engagement

Practical guide to evaluating audience engagement

By Research Councils UK


Guidelines to help you evaluate audience engagement activities, whether you have previous experience or not. The methods are based on social and market research. This is a practical guide to embedding evaluation within your engagement activity. It gives a brief explanation of the theory then takes you through such aspects as SMART objectives, selecting Key Performance Indicators and techniques for quantitative and qualitative research, data handling and how to structure a report.

3.2.1 Specific

A specific objective has a much greater chance of being accomplished than a general goal. To set a specific objective you need to answer the six “W” questions below:

Why: Specific reasons, purpose or benefits of accomplishing the objective.

Who: Who needs to be involved?

Where: Identify a location, which may be virtual.

What: What are the tasks I need to accomplish?

Which: Identify requirements and constraints.

When: Establish a time frame.

An objective that is specific will usually have a single result, which means there will be an observable action, behaviour or achievement that can be described.

3.2.2 Relevant

To be relevant the objective must be something you can actually do that will help you to achieve your aim, taking into account the resources you have for your activity including financial, personnel and time resources. At this point re-consider whether or not the specifics you have identified are genuinely relevant to your overall aim. If they are, fine, if not go back and refine them so that they are.

So, if your aim is to “win support for my research field” then all of your objectives must help you to achieve this aim.

Resource type: Guide/tools | Published: 2013