Three Tips for Building Media Monitoring into an Award-Winning Communications Strategy
Effective media monitoring isn’t a passive activity done only after-the-fact. At its best, media monitoring is a vital tool in the creative and strategic process followed by the best public relations and communications professionals.
Media monitoring provides valuable insights into a topic or industry, ideas to serve as creative fodder, and examples of best- and worst-case scenarios to use as de facto case studies.
If you’re ready to use media monitoring to take your creative strategy to the next level, here are some tips to get you started, to help you fill in the blanks and to make sure you finish strong.
To Get Started: Host a Speed Storytelling Session
Creativity and strategy don’t exist in a vacuum. Building plans that grab the attention of audiences and deliver results requires a team approach. Oftentimes, the best way to home in on the best strategies and tactics is to widen your net and seek insights from others.
Speed storytelling sessions are a great way to start or revitalize a creative strategy. First, identify stakeholders within your organization (potentially including vendors and consultants). Then, develop a list of rapid-fire questions you would ask them to help them tell their story.
These questions should focus on identifying things they view as wins and challenges. Make it an opportunity to connect what you offer as a communications professional with what their individual goals and needs are within your organization. This is their chance to tell their story so that you, in turn, can build a comprehensive and engaging story for your brand or organization.
Time is of the essence—and the best insights often come under a little bit of pressure. Schedule a session with individual stakeholders in 15- to 20-minute increments. After conducting several of these sessions, spend time to identify common threads or concerns and use that to fuel aspects of your creative strategy.
To Fill in the Blanks: Know the News and Make it Your Own
Newsjacking is an effective tool to take your knowledge of the current news cycle and leverage that for an earned media placement or engaging social media posting for your brand. As we’ve discussed in previous posts, Newsjacking “creates” news for your brand or organization by finding a creative and strategic way to interject it into an existing story.
As part of a creative strategy, newsjacking can be an effective tactic to use whenever there is a strategic need for media coverage, but you lack a solid angle to attract media attention without a little something “extra.” When you’re between major announcements, or just looking to diversify your editorial calendar, newsjacking can be a great way to supplement an already developed plan.
To Finish Strong: Prove Results with Intuitive Measurement
Strategic media monitoring doesn’t just involve tracking placements. It should follow through with creative, insightful measurements and analytics that help to assign value to media coverage. This is vital when faced with the professional mandate of assigning measurable value to business decisions.
In the planning stage, be sure that your creative strategy identifies what outcomes will be measured. Understand and clearly outline how to measure those outcomes. Failing to plan how performance will be identified is a strategic oversight that can result in no clear pathway to demonstrable success.
Results are important—and they can be illustrated creatively. Newsdesk provides a variety of engaging analytics templates that provide automatically updated reports so that creative and strategic communications professionals can track results in real time.