Univeral Amplifier

Universal Amplifier

Amplifying the topics that power today's PR professional

From Counting News Clips to Media Insight

I recently spoke over the phone with a long-time Universal Information Services client about media analysis. I mention the phone because this New York client, who is a colleague and friend, is an old-school type (he can tweet, he just doesn’t like to.) This PR pro has always been a big believer in tallying up the daily results of good media relations work. Back in the 1990s, his office staff clipped, pasted, and copied newspaper articles with scissors, glue, and a very tired Xerox machine. His voluminous, but sometimes ragged-looking clips got sent out to his executive team each work day.

Universal Information Services provides business insight through media analysis

Like other complete news monitoring services, Universal simplifies how to expedite the delivery of new stories in any format – print, broadcast, and social media — and this client embraced print and broadcast portals years ago. It helped make his workday easier and the clips look great. In most cases, the next step for a seasoned client like this is reliable media analysis.

Media analysis, the way it’s done at Universal, tracks how well an organization is doing by providing detailed results of their media exposure. News from Chicago or Denver, is different than Las Vegas and Seattle. Factors like the tone of a story, the reach of a news organization, and the importance of the story topic to a company are factored into what Universal has developed as the Impact Score. When viewed over time, an Impact Score accurately tracks communication effectiveness. It’s more than simply tallying up column inches, broadcast minutes, or story counts. This kind of analysis work, done by trained analysts, provides a real measurement of how well a company is doing at getting its most important messages out.

Universal collaborated with a leading university to develop what we believe is the most valid and the smartest PR measurement methodology in the United States. More and more companies are realizing that media analysis isn’t a luxury item, but rather a vital part of communication planning. The various types of analysis can help organizations from small to large, from the very local to those that span the country. Some clients may want analysis only at certain times of the year or after a major communication push. Analysis is flexible enough to work with a range of needs, or even measure outcomes after a media crisis.

As media outlets and communication tools evolve, so should the methodology of your media measurement program. News, communications, and public relations are all dynamic fields, and keeping up with changes is something that Universal has been doing for more than a century. We refer to this as our #samerules #newtools philosophy. My PR colleague hasn’t been working for over 100 years, but he knows what works and knows that his Media Analysis report provides terrific insight. At Universal, providing the best information is what we do. Be sure your media measurement program is providing you with real insight.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on measuring your PR outcomes. Please leave a comment.


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