Media monitoring has been such an integral part of my professional life, practically from the very beginning, that sometimes it can be hard for me to wrap my mind around the fact that there are businesses that just don’t see the need for monitoring. Interestingly enough, it’s been the advent of social media that has paved the way for an improved understanding of how important it is to monitor traditional media too. Business owners have seen large brands brought to their virtual knees online, and they immediately intuit the need to monitor social channels. Given the fluid nature of news and reporting, the same arguments can be used to advance the case to begin a program of comprehensive media monitoring.
Budgets are tight, and it can be hard to make the case to add on another expense when a business has been operating without a service. Here are some points to bring up if you need to sell media monitoring to your bosses:
- It saves time. There are more channels out there than ever before, and depending on just a few local sources or occasional Google searches isn’t going to cut it. Setting up a monitoring program will allow you to track issues important to your business and will save time by delivering what you need to you, rather than searching through pages of results.
- It can help you gauge how your competitors are doing. A good monitoring program will provide you with more than just information on where your company has been mentioned—it can also be a good way of gaining visibility into what your competitors are up to. This in turn can help guide advertising or sales targets. It can also help you to discover what your competitors’ weaknesses are, or where they might have dissatisfied customers.
- It can—and should—help you reach business goals. By expanding the range of what you monitor for beyond just simple mentions of your business, you can use media monitoring to gain insight into your customers, and where your industry might be headed. Use monitoring to help identify untapped markets, and tie that research back to sales objectives.
- It is invaluable in a crisis. Crisis planning is something that every business should do, and yet so many just don’t bother with it. Having a media monitoring program in place can be invaluable in a crisis. In many cases it can be an early warning system, alerting you to the existence of a troubling story before it gets picked up by other news organizations or social channels. During a crisis, monitoring can provide a business with an understanding of how widely a crisis is spreading, and how the story—and the business response—are being received by the public. On the back end, monitoring can provide a roadmap of what was done well and what needs to be improved upon in the event of another crisis down the road.
So, whether your bosses respond best to programs that save time, best the competition, reach business goals, or manage a crisis, there are many arguments to be made for having a media monitoring program in place.