The trouble with media monitoring

As a field, as a science, media monitoring and measurement has never been more sophisticated than it is now. The benefits of listening, and then learning from the results, have been clearly established.

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Yet, as an article from PR Week explains, many corporate communications and PR teams are reluctant to rely on media data.

The question is why.

Why do so many teams still approach the practice of media monitoring and analysis with such caution, unwilling to use the data to inform decisions and strategy?

The answer comes down to trust. The trouble with media monitoring is that the people who should be using it don’t always trust the data.

Automated monitoring vs. manual

But it’s here where a distinction must be made. Media monitoring and analysis can be done in one of two ways: strictly automated monitoring, or with human insight. And as the article states, “Purely automated analysis has key shortcomings.”

One example is that technology, despite all its advances, still has trouble identifying which content is relevant and which can be ignored. And if your dataset is filled with content that doesn’t apply to your organization and its goals, it will only drown out the germane information you’ve collected. This can make metrics and supposed trends inaccurate and misleading.

The same is true when relying too much on DIY keyword searches.

‘No replacement for the human factor’

Julia Vadurro, a Client Success account manager at Agility PR Solutions, who does media monitoring for customers, says that even the best Boolean search string and access to umpteen content sources can only take you so far. “The simplicity and uniqueness of your keywords, and the breadth of data you are attempting to mine, can greatly impact the effectiveness of data provided by automated monitoring solutions” she says. “For more complex media monitoring, we have a person curate the results and compile the brief, to eliminate noise for our customers.”

The aim is to collect properly and cull judiciously, and the best way to do that is to have a professional on your side.

With Agility Enterprise – one of three product offerings available from Agility PR Solutions – reporting, analysis, and sentiment are all human-curated. That means a dedicated analyst will make sure your media content, and the insight that comes with it, is relevant and reliable.

The PR Week article concludes that in order to trust your media data, “You must have confidence that it’s being thoroughly cleaned (removing noise) and analyzed properly (to connect with your goals).” Agility PR Solutions’ devoted and qualified Client Success and Media Insights teams give you that confidence by providing true, trustworthy, and actionable insight.

As Vadurro puts it, “Relying on automated monitoring for clean and accurate datasets on which to base important strategy decisions is a bit like entering into a major life decision armed with the results of a BuzzFeed survey.”

Your company deserves more.

Contact us to find out how we can help streamline your media monitoring and the entire communications lifecycle.


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Marcus Kaulback

Marcus Kaulback

Marcus is a content marketer with Agility PR Solutions. When he’s not creating the stuff, he’s unearthing it, curating it, and tailoring it, in order to bring the utmost value to his audience (while also bringing a little bit to the company). He has a sister who is also in marketing. What a world!


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