Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Pointers for online monitoring and evaluation


I have been thinking recently about media monitoring; many people just work with searches using Google, for which interestingly there is no comparable traditional media comparison. There are many up-to-the-minute online notification systems users can subscribed to for free (no need to list them).

If tracking a ‘busy’ sector, topic or client, then filtering will likely be an issue. Current thinking is moving away from quantitative, and towards qualitative analysis, ie reporting what was said rather than how much. The recent AMEC Barcelona principles back this up pointing users towards restricting effort to the influential media. ‘Influence’ is not a universal measure; it needs to tie-in with the (all important) campaign objectives. We are talking about restricting effort to the important commentators; but it needs work up-front, deciding who is influential. Factors to consider might be community involvement, Twitter followers, number of blog comments, etc.

There are a number of tools and techniques which PR can use to gauge success. In the times before online/social media there was a fairly restrictive selection of techniques which could be used; but with social media (and its many manifestations - Twitter, Facebook, etc) the breadth of measures has blossomed.