Media monitoring has become a ‘must have’ for PR pros, providing a valuable means for gathering coverage as well as intelligence on industries, competitors, and issues. For those with the budget, automated platforms can deliver more accurate information, fast.
Even though there are many affordable options out there, the issue, for some, is the price tag – and that’s OK. Although it’s true to say: “you get what you pay for”, small and start-up organizations cannot always justify the expenditure. This makes it necessary to explore in-house alternatives to paid monitoring platforms.
Here, we stack up the circumstances in which in-house media monitoring is a viable and acceptable alternative to paid monitoring platforms. Simply highlight the statements that best apply to your organization or account to see which solution could fit best.
Monitoring with in-house tools
In-house tools can be an economical and useful choice for some companies, but it should always be an informed decision.
If you are using freely available tools, ensure you research the system’s limitations. Some can be quick to report coverage, others are much delayed – and some don’t consistently fall into either camp. Explore the functionality and you may realize that your monitoring, tracking and analysis requirements are fully covered.
However, there is a tipping point when paid services bring an efficiency and timeliness to media monitoring that, ultimately, saves money. And it’s probably sooner than you think!
Automated monitoring brings benefits
When simply looking at the bottom line, a paid service obviously costs more than a free tool. Factor in the amount of time and resources involved in manually recreating what a service does and that’s where the savings occur – particularly when coverage volumes are high or complex.
Paid monitoring services fulfil an important and strategic role for communicators. Outsourcing high-volume, routine work improves accuracy and frees PR pros up to do the creative work that cannot be done by a machine. Beyond that, the added ammunition it provides to be nimble and intelligent in how communications strategy is delivered is surely – in some cases – priceless.