It's very common to promote a national or regional brand to encourage tourism and investment. However, Brand organizations often find it challenging to develop robust strategies to prove that they're having an impact. Many factors affect the type of outcomes they're focusing on (increased tourism, increased investment and increased business) and this makes it very hard to prove that they are the ones that made the difference. The DoView Visual Strategic Planing and DoView Visual M&E (Monitoring and Evaluation) approach provides the easiest way of dealing with these challenges. DoView is a new piece of outcomes software being used by many people in many sectors and countries to analyze their outcomes and prove and communicate their impact. Below we demonstrate how you can quickly amend the National or Regional Brand Promotion Organization's DoView Visual M&E Plan Template to develop a customized monitoring and evaluation plan for your brand promotion organization using the innovative DoView visual format.
A. For Strategic Planning - DoView Visual Strategic Planning
Develop a DoView Visual Strategic Plan for your National or Regional Brand Promotion Organization more. Use your DoView Plan for collaborative work with other agencies involved in national or regional brand promotion more. If your organization provides grants to other providers involved in promoting the brand, use the DoView approach to ensure providers are focused on the brand outcomes you want more.
B. For Monitoring and Evaluation - DoView Visual M&E Planning
In addition to using DoView for visual strategic planning, the approach also provides a better way of doing monitoring and evaluation to prove that you're having an impact. The monitoring and evaluation problems faced by a National or Regional Brand Promotion Organization are:
1. Working out what you can robustly measure and prove about your organization's impact
2. Quickly communicating with your funders about what's feasible in regard to proving your organization's impact
3. Quickly communicating what information you currently have which proves your organization's impact
4. Communicating your forward plans for work to further establish your organization's impact.
The DoView Visual M&E approach to proving brand impact lets you quickly do all of these four. The steps in the process are set out below.
1. Build a visual DoView of your program or organization
Click inside the illustrative DoView below of a National or Regional Brand Promotion Organization. A DoView is a visual model of a program or organization. Information is available on the rules for building such DoViews more. To use this DoView immediately and tailor it to represent your particular organization, download a free trial of DoView software here. Then download the DoView file which created the below webpage version below and start editing it for your tailored Organizational DoView M&E Plan here. Note that a DoView like this created from DoView software can be put up on the web in seconds using the free Dropbox service more.
2. Put indicators onto the DoView visual model next to their relevant boxes
Put any indicators you collect next to the boxes which they measure within your DoView. You can now see what you are, and are not, routinely measuring and monitoring. See the 'level' of the boxes being measured (i.e. are they high-level or low-level). There will not always be an indicator for every box within a DoView and there might be more than one indicator for a single box. It's worthwhile to show which indicators your organization 'controls' and which you do not necessarily control (because other factors might influence their improvement). In the second diagram below, controllable indicators are marked in blue and have an '@' next to them to show that they are direct accountabilities.
It is usually wise for your direct accountabilities to be limited only to indicators which you control. It usually does not make sense for funders or others to hold your organization directly to account for 'not-necessarily controllable' indicators because whether or not they are achieved may depend on other factors. Of course, you need to measure high-level indicators even where they are not in your control because tracking them is important for strategic purposes.
3. Put evaluation questions onto your DoView next to the boxes they relate to
Put possible evaluation questions onto your DoView. Possible evaluation questions can include: implementation evaluation questions (ones aimed at improving the way you're implementing your program); impact evaluation questions (ones aimed at proving that you're having an impact on high-level outcomes); and economic and comparative evaluation questions (ones aimed at comparing your work with the success of other similar organizations and/or translating the effects of your work into the common metric of dollar values using techniques such as cost-benefit analysis).
Putting evaluation questions onto your DoView makes it easier to identify the different types of questions and to communicate to stakeholders the 'level' of your evaluation questions. You will be wanting to show whether a particular evaluation question is focused on high-level outcomes (impact evaluation) or just focused on improving lower-level steps you're undertaking in your work (implementation evaluation).
4. Work out the best impact evaluation design(s) to prove you're having an impact on high-level outcomes
You need to consider using impact evaluation in cases where your 'controllable indicators' do not reach to the highest-level boxes within your DoView. Merely showing that a controllable indicator has improved is sufficient evidence that it was you who improved it. An example of a controllable indicator for your organization is the level of Brand awareness amongst target audiences. If this increases we can be pretty sure that it is your organization that has made it increase. However, just showing that an indicator higher up the DoView, a higher-level 'not necessarily controllable' indicator (e.g. the number of tourists entering the country) has improved does not prove anything by itself. It does not provide proof that it was your organization that caused it to change (because other factors might have created the change).
For instance, in the case of a National or Regional Brand Promotion Organization, changes in the country's exchange rate will also influence tourist numbers and investment. Your organization cannot control such factors. For more information on the theory behind this see here.
In cases where the indicators at the top of your DoView are 'non-controllable' (which will always be the case with organizations such as National or Regional Brand Promotion Organizations) there's only one way you can prove that it's your organization that is making a difference. In such cases you need to use impact evaluation. The best way to deal with planning for how to answer impact evaluation questions is to use Duignan's Impact Evaluation Feasibility Check. This lets you work out which, if any, impact evaluation design types can be used in the case of your particular organization. Duignan's approach gets you to assess the appropriateness, feasibility and affordability of seven major impact evaluation design types. Note that you should not assume that it's possible to do any particular type of impact evaluation design in the case of your program until you have fully assessed its appropriateness, feasibility and affordability for your particular program. See here for how to use the Duignan approach. Below you can see example analyses from the Duignan approach of just two of the seven major impact evaluation design types. Each design type is assessed for its: appropriateness, feasibility and affordability.
5. Work up M&E projects to measure indicators and answer evaluation questions
Work up your monitoring and evaluation projects that you will use to measure your indicators and answer your evaluation questions.
6. Add whatever other pages you want to your DoView
Add introductory or other pages about your organization to your DoView M&E Plan. For instance, slides with bullet points for use when you are making presentations on your monitoring and evaluation work; information on the way the evaluation will be managed; risk management etc. Keep all your M&E planning work in the one DoView file rather than having it spread over many different presentation and other files which you have to continually keep updated. Use your DoView file for making all presentations on your monitoring and evaluation work; controlling the implementation of your monitoring and evaluation work; and reporting back on your results.
7. Report back your latest monitoring and evaluation results directly onto your DoView (if you wish)
Report your M&E results back against your indicators and evaluation questions directly onto your DoView by using traffic-lights to show which of the steps in your DoView have been achieved. This means that readers can 'see' your monitoring and evaluation results in the context of what it is that your organization is trying to achieve. Feed this into the next round of DoView Visual Strategic Planning more.
How to customize this template described above to produce your organization's DoView Visual M&E Plan:
1. Print of the PDF version of the DoView Visual M&E Plan Template so that you can become familiar with how it is set out. Here
2. Download a trial version of DoView (available for PC and Mac)
3. Download the DoView National or Regional Brand Visual M&E Plan Template and edit it within DoView to produce your customized plan. Here
4. If you wish, when you have finished it, create a webpage version using the free Dropbox service. More
5. If you wish, also use the DoView model you have created for DoView Visual Strategic Planning. More
Anyone can use the above material, with acknowledgment, and in their own for-profit or not-for-profit consulting work if they, or their clients, are using the approach with a purchased license to DoView Software (Buy DoView here). Anyone can use the material above to teach anyone else how to use DoView software. If you want to use the material for other purposes please contact email@example.com.
If you have any questions or comments about using the DoView approach with brand evaluation or in any other area, please post them on the DoView Linkedin Community of Practice, or where more appropriate, email DoView directly. We very much look forward to hearing from you. Download DoView free trial now.