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ARTICLE: How to measure a media company’s performance

Gauges by Jeanne, licence CC BY 2.0

Media companies’ performance can not be measured with the same yardstick as that of industrial companies’, write Reinhard E. Kunz, Johannes Siebert and Joschka Mütterlein, all of University of Bayreuth.

The authors interviewed key personnel in a mid-sized German news daily, Nordbayerischer Kurier. They then used the answers to formulate a so-called “balanced scorecard”, that is specific to the media sector. The scorecard is an instrument, presented in 1993 by Robert Kaplan and David Norton, that is meant to measure whether a company is functioning in accordance with its goals.

The interviews yielded a total of 1 283 objectives, which the authors first boiled down to just under 700. The finalized scorecard consists of 33 high-level objectives, which influence each other in a network that supports the company’s ultimate objectives: to make profit, survive, and yield interest on investment.

After confirming the validity of the scorecard with Nordbayerischer Kurier‘s management, the authors implemented it at a Czech media group. Results suggest that the scorecard indeed is applicable to media companies beyond the Kurier, at which it was formulated.

The article “Structuring objectives of media companies” was published by the Journal of Media Business Studies. It is available online (free abstract).

Picture: Gauges by Jeanne, licence CC BY 2.0.

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