Global media monitoring becoming business necessity

Media coverage doesn't stop at the border. For executives, knowing how their brands are viewed around the world is critical to the expanding geography of business. Globalization has made the need for international media monitoring more pressing.

Media coverage doesn't stop at the border. For executives, knowing how their brands are viewed around the world is critical to the expanding geography of business. Globalization has made the need for international media monitoring more pressing.

"Large companies [with] operations around the world need to understand different markets," says Chris Johnson, CEO of dna13, a communications software manufacturer.

One of the major reasons for international media monitoring is so corporations can keep an eye on the value of their brands, especially on non-traditional news sources.

"Large companies are not really prepared for the fact that there's so much new media being generated," adds Johnson. "[Monitoring] social media sites and blogs that are a starting point for difficult news gives advanced warning where issues are arising."

Moreover, monitoring international media also provides insight into trends happening elsewhere. That information can be used in global communications strategies.

"A lot [of international monitoring] is for understanding the macro-trends in pockets [of the world], rather than to respond right away," says Valerie Coombs, PR director for BuzzLogic. "There is a wealth of information that you can glean - a way to position something, things to avoid."

Report International believes that cross-border monitoring provides "news intelligence," rather than a set of clips.

"It's important to understand how to place a story that is relevant to our client in the context of the larger media market," says MD Mike Daniels.

That context includes translating things like sarcasm and irony, which may be country- and language-specific, and grouping comparable coverage.

"You know your market," notes Daniels, "but how many international PR managers have gaping holes in their knowledge of other markets? From our perspective, why wouldn't you monitor media internationally if you're an international organization?"

Key points:
Entities doing business in foreign markets can monitor global media to keep tabs on how their brand resonates locally

Monitoring not only helps comms pros identify problems, but offers solutions for global strategy

When checking global media, be sure to take into account cultural variance

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