Media monitoring and why your business needs it

It’s just about impossible to follow every mention of your business in the media these days. Why? Because the ‘media’ as we know it, is a growing number of public channels available for all to see 24/7 worldwide. It sounds daunting because it is! Setting up Google News Alerts isn’t going to cut it anymore.

Why? Media channels cover much more than traditional platforms, i.e. print, TV, radio and online. Today, there’s the ever expanding social media landscape, ranging from mentions on business pages to mentions on any page such as blogs, message boards, forums, etc.

I used to work at Media Monitors (now isentia) a million years ago when departments were split into print, broadcast (TV and radio) and online (news-based sites and business blogs). At that time, Australian businesses were still building their social media presence. Consumers were also getting the hang of it. For the most part, people were largely posting photos of friends and family to share with loved ones at home and overseas.

Today, social media has become a powerful consumer feedback platform where we air our grievances with businesses and their products. Businesses that do well in this space, respond quickly to the grievance with a clear outline of how they will take action to resolve it. This not only demonstrates their commitment to customer service to the person making the grievance BUT also to everyone else online watching how they respond via the page, post, comments field, etc.

Doing well in this space is either the ‘job’ of a dedicated team within your business or outsourced to an external provider, which I highly recommend given that these providers operate 24/7 (and have the technology) to keep you abreast of potential issues to your business or industry in real-time – keeping you on the front foot when a crisis strikes.

The first step is writing up the brief. Here are my top 5 media monitoring must-haves that include some of the additional services now provided by companies in this field:

  1. Social media: so many channels, so little time! Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, YouTube…and so on. Plus blogs, forums, video, Q&A sites and images/video. If they’re doing it right, media monitoring businesses use customised ‘crawlers’ that index social media sites in real-time. You should include relevant hashtags, account names, keywords, mentions and/or URLs in your brief. There is also a bunch of free stuff you can use too – check out this Top 25 from KeyHole (please note, they do list themselves in this list but also mention some other leading providers!).
  2. Print media: get the clips sent to you daily or weekly depending on your requirements. Any good media monitoring business will give you a heads up of any major developments even if you opt for weekly. Choose any combination of the following relevant to your location and industry:
    • Daily and non-daily newspapers
    • Regional publications
    • Consumer magazines
    • Trade magazines
    • Professional journals
  3. Broadcast media: you can opt for a summary or get verbatim transcripts or video/audio files across TV, radio and online, which is most relevant either to just your business or your competitors/broader industry.
  4. Media insights and reporting: this is great for campaigns, product launches and major events. Get a sense of market reach and penetration across media channels and audiences for a specific timeframe.
  5. Media release distribution: this is where media monitoring companies can offer the most up-to-date contact lists of news outlets, journalists, editors and bloggers nationally and sometimes even further afield depending on your requirements. This also gives you the added bonus of having all your media intelligence in the one place. For example, you can use the same media portal to send your release, check its coverage, and access its analytics and insights reporting.

Not convinced or need more information? Give Cuckoo a call. We can help you work out exactly what you need to monitor for your business and how to respond to both the good the bad and the ugly!