Special Series: Measuring Impact

    by Jason Alcorn
    September 22, 2016
    Photo from Unsplash used under Creative Commons license.

    Newsrooms pride themselves on stories that make a difference.

    Those stories can be good for business, too. Impact is a point of differentiation in a crowded marketplace for commercial news and a powerful motivator for philanthropists who support public media and non-profit journalism.

    And yet the line from reporting to impact isn’t always clear.


    This special series from MetricShift on measuring impact aims to help. Starting today, the series will explore how the field of journalism is measuring impact, as well as the tools and best practices you can use to get started right away. We’ll also have pieces that examine the purpose of impact assessment: To help investors make better investment decisions, such as a leadership team allocating resources in a newsroom, or institutional and individual donors supporting public interest journalism.

    To follow along with the series, join our MetricShift Facebook group, sign up for our Media Metrics Roundup weekly newsletter, or follow MediaShift on Twitter. New stories will be added to the list below as they are published.

    Series posts

    CIR’s Impact Tracker: How to Use It and Why You Need It by Lindsay Green-Barber


    #MetricShift Chat: The Metrics of Investigative Reporting by Tim Cigelske

    A Quantitative Basis for Measuring Media Impact at the Media Consortium by Jo Ellen Kaisar

    How We Measured Impact for a Solutions Journalism Story on Poverty by Talia Stroud and Shannon McGregor

    How Documentary Filmmakers Plan Ahead for Impact by Patricia Aufderheide

    Coming Soon

    How to Write a Stakeholder Report by Mara Jezior and Lauren Fuhrmann

    Telling the Story of Impact by Jason Tomassini

    The Impact of Documentary Video by Lisa Biagiotti


    Twitter Chat & Training

    Join us for our Twitter chat at the #MetricShift hashtag on Sept. 23 at 1pm ET.

    DigitalEd Training: How to Measure Impact in Journalism


    Other Coverage of media impact on MediaShift

    The Power of Empathy, Personal Narrative and More Lessons from the Story Movements Conference

    How Media Metrics Training Works In The Real World

    Practicing What They Preach: J-School News Services Track Engagement and Impact

    How the ‘Inverted Impact Pyramid’ Can Make a Hyperlocal Story Go International

    How the Nonprofit Newsroom Behind the “Panama Papers” Investigation Measures Impact

    3 Types of Impact You Can Visualize With StoryPilot

    People Matter More Than Metrics at Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting

    How CIR Measured Greater Awareness of Health Risks After Investigation

    5 Metrics Takeaways for Non-Profit News from INN Day 2016

    #MetricShift Chat: Measuring Impact

    What’s Next for Media Impact? Lessons from CIR Dissection in Seattle


    Jason Alcorn (@jasonalcorn) is the Metrics Editor for MediaShift. In addition to his work with MediaShift, he is an analyst with the Media Impact Project and works as a consultant with non-profits and newsrooms.

    Tagged: evaluation m&e media impact media metrics social impact special series

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    MetricShift examines the ways we can use meaningful metrics in the digital age. We provide thoughtful, actionable content on metrics, analytics and measuring impact through original reporting, aggregation, and audience engagement and community.

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    Metrics Editor: Alexandra Kanik

    Associate Metrics Editor: Tim Cigelske

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    Brian Boyer, NPR

    Clare Carr, Parse.ly

    Anjanette Delgado, Gannett

    Hannah Eaves, consultant, Gates Foundation

    Ian Gibbs, Guardian

    Lindsay Green-Barber, CIR/Reveal

    Celeste LeCompte, ProPublica

    Alisa Miller, PRI

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