Media monitoring is a well-established industry and you can find numerous tools to track and monitor both mainstream media and innovative social media channels. This, however, does not mean the industry is not evolving or not being impacted by the widespread adoption of algorithm-based technology, artificial intelligence, and machine learning.
New media monitoring tools are emerging frequently and you need to be capable of assessing their features to get the most out of the respective service. Actually, media monitoring is not about tracking and clipping media content anymore. It is more about triggering practicable signals and generating actionable insights, which corporations can use to enhance their overall business performance and retain competitive advantage.
Track Local, Track Global
Global markets are not accessible to large multinationals only. Current business ecosystem enables startups and small and medium businesses to perform well on a global scale. So, you need features to track media and social media mentions both locally and globally.
What is more, you need functionality to analyze media in different languages. English is the international business language but Spanish, Portuguese, Russian, and Chinese-language media cover enormous markets. India is a market of more than a billion consumers as well. You need to know the needs and complaints of any region in which you operate, while a growing number of smaller companies operate internationally.
Understanding Natural Language
You can find a good number of media tracking tools that allow you to perform keyword queries using Boolean search operators such as ‘and’, ‘or’, and ‘not’. This is not enough in the fast-paced world of social media channels and independent media sources such as blogs and community forums. What you need is capability to understand natural language expressions and trigger signals based on consumers’ feedback and conversations that mention your brand or product.
An advanced feature that is gradually becoming mandatory in media monitoring is functionality to put a keyword in context and catch meaningful content based on contextual monitoring. This way you eliminate much of the spam and meaningless mentions of a service or product. You can also use the respective keyword phrase to track entire industries in the context of specific market conditions or trigger signals pertaining to changes in market sentiment. This, however, is not a feature you can find in a free-to-use tool for media monitoring.
When More is More
Ability to monitor multiple sources, in the range of thousands, is a prerequisite to even consider using a specific media monitoring platform. Configurability and flexibility are other vital features of such a tool.
Source: Smart Insights
The media monitoring market is crowded by online and installed add-ons and extensions. Most of them are not professional tools, however. You can actually track a dozen of channels using one of these programs but what you need is an algorithm that incorporates advanced rules and generates alerts from hundreds of sources in real time. In our times, a single media channel can generate product buzz in hours and you cannot predict on which channel such a conversation may happen. So you must track them all, on the basis of advanced AI-powered algorithmic rules.
Integrations and Customization Features
A survey by Smart Insights shows that 95 percent of users want their media monitoring platform to feature trend analysis functionality and 72 percent of corporations need automated sentiment analysis.
But corporate users also want integration with other tools such as CRM systems as well as workflow management and integrations through an API. Data export is another business-critical media monitoring feature while connecting an enterprise software like a CRM definitely requires export of data from the news tracking application. Moreover, such an export function should be also rule-based since it makes no sense to export all the data you can collect using an advanced media tracking tool.
Then you need customization. An easy-to-use and intuitive news monitoring software should also be customizable. It may look that all companies need a universal dashboard on the surface but this is not true. Each industry vertical requires specific media monitoring features, while a real-time news tracking dashboard cannot look like a dashboard for analyzing very specific media mention trends.
Despite the fact that a good number of corporations can live comfortably with a fully automated platform for media monitoring, others still need human intervention or human-made media analysis. Having a completely customizable media monitoring dashboard is the only way to get the most out of otherwise advanced media tracking software.