Matt co-founded TrendKite in 2012 and oversees all aspects of the organization’s product strategy and development.
Media monitoring involves the monitoring of the output of any type of media in relation to your business, from print and broadcast media to websites and social media platforms. In today's high-tech world, media monitoring is mostly comprised of anything a consumer can find online related to your business. Creating a media monitoring plan is important when it comes to keeping tabs on how you are perceived among your intended customers.
Determine Your Focus Areas
Before you start monitoring, you need to know your purpose for media monitoring. Are you only listening for your brand? Do you want to know what competitors are saying about you in their media efforts? Do you have a certain campaign you want tracked independent of your other results? You can further narrow your focus to specific keywords and phrases related to your business. Determining your focus should also include:
• Assumptions before you start monitoring
• Expectations once you start receiving results
• Whether you need industry analysis or competitive analysis
Clearly Articulate Your Goals
Determine your goals and spell them out as clearly as possible. Identify any current customer service issues you are facing, whether it be customers not clearly understanding what services you provide or a perception of poor customer service. Determine what measurements can best track and measure results based on your goals. Be specific in your goals by determining whether or not you want to:
• Maintain status quo, attract a larger audience, or market to new audience
• Route customers to an online solution or direct them toward offline channels
• Relate your measuring results to other business areas such as customer service, product development, or marketing
Consider Available Resources
Once you determine your goals and focus areas, decide on where you are going to go for your monitoring needs. If you opt for a monitoring service, you'll save you time and money since you won't have to add or reallocate internal resources. If you do plan to eventually transition to internal monitoring, however, determine if you have the right tools to effectively measure the media you want to monitor. You'll also want to determine how many hours you plan to devote to listening efforts per week or month. If you're going to do internal monitoring, determine your personnel needs.
Map Information Flow
Determine who needs to know what result you're receiving from your monitoring efforts. Whether you use a service or do internal monitoring, you still need to determine a procedure for providing insights to the appropriate team members. You also want to determine what each team member is expected to do with the results, whether it be acting on the data or providing constructive feedback.
Determine Relevant Results
Regardless of whether you use a service or not, you still have to determine what specific results you want. What key information do you want in your PR reports? How often do you want to receive reports? Additionally, you want to determine:
• When the first report should occur after your listening program starts
• Who will ultimately make decisions based on the results
• What results are most likely to be relevant to your business
Whether you go with a media monitoring service like TrendKite or some other service, it's important to focus on metrics that matter to your business. There are literally hundreds of monitoring companies out there. Take some time to shop around and find a service that's right for you. Once you start accumulating data, it's just as important to put that information to use by sharing reports with your colleagues as you determine the most effective ways to establish a connection with your target audience.