chapter  19
Research and evaluation – PR grows up?
Pages 21

I n the early 1990s, something strange happened. As recession began to bite and budgetswere slashed, public relations practitioners began to talk about whether or not PRcould be measured, and so prove its worth. Up to that point, no one had really been concerned about measurement of results. ‘Gut feeling’ was felt to be an acceptable gauge of whether a PR campaign had succeeded. People relied on their own experience to tell them what would work in a particular situation. Puchan et al. (1999: 166) suggested that an interest in evaluation was stimulated by ‘the consumer interest movement, the implementation of measures to improve managerial effectiveness and the tendency to professionalisation’.