There are boundless instances for brands to receive media coverage in one 24 hour news cycle. But how can business leaders monitor and learn about the coverage they are receiving, even when they have no interest in being in the news?
Some companies rely on the method of a traditional media clippings report. This is when communications teams spend hours scouring media sources, scanning for mention of their brand to clip, compile, and share. There are also a handful of “media monitoring” services that provide clip reports, but typically it’s a small team of agency practitioners who are building these reports.
So what is media monitoring and how does it function?
What is Media Monitoring?
Media Monitoring is the process of continuously tracking media channels, collecting all mentions of a particular brand or selected topic. This process helps industry leaders to track their brand mentions as well as key themes across different platforms to determine how they are being perceived by their media audiences.
Many brands stop there. They review their reports, share them internally, and await the next report.
But, there is much more that can be done.
The next step after media monitoring is media analysis. Once relevant mentions and topics are collected, this data can be used to glean insights and identify industry trends. Media analysis is the breakdown of collected data into digestible trends and themes. This is significant because industry leaders utilize and interpret this knowledge to inform their business decisions. Many companies don’t take this step, only the smart and strategic ones do.
Examples of Media Monitoring
Some examples of this analysis might be:
- Share of voice: how did the brand compare to competitors in terms of media mentions?
- Top media: which content was most impactful or received the most engagement.
- Sentiment: how was the business, brand, or organization portrayed by the media? This is typically categorized as positive, neutral, or negative.
- Earned media: how much coverage was received as a result of promotional efforts, rather than through paid advertising?
- Follower growth: have social media platforms gained or lost followers this month? How does this number compare to the previous month?
Identifying Media Trends
Collecting and identifying these media trends can support enterprises in a number of ways.
- Competitor Coverage: tracking coverage of competitors in addition to one’s own business enables brands to identify best practices as well as find areas for improvement.
For example: If a competitor runs a successful charity campaign that receives a high amount of earned media coverage, one may consider creating a new and unique community giving initiative, or determine other ways to gain back share of voice in that field.
- Crisis Communication: proficient monitoring can be used to get ahead of a crisis or cut down on response time, resolving the issue before it becomes a problem.
- Audience Engagement: In order to improve messaging to resonate with consumers, enterprises need to determine who is engaging with their content. Understanding one’s audience is vital to building strategies that continue to engage and increase audience participation and positive sentiment with the brand.
- Marketing Campaigns: Media monitoring can be utilized to measure end results of marketing and PR campaigns. This can be a helpful tool when gauging the success of the campaign overall. It also serves current campaigns, allowing businesses to adjust mid-promotion if the messaging is not resonating with, or reaching the appropriate audiences.
Awareness of one’s brand content and how it is being perceived in the media can be highly beneficial for industry leaders hoping to expand their business. Media monitoring and analysis are significantly important tools for any company wishing to better understand their media presence, its impact, and whether there is a need to take action.
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