I recently read an post on Kevin Bondelli's blog, and was prompted with these ideas.
I will have to preface this by stating that I own a newspaper clipping service. One thing that PR Professionals should realize, is that everything is not on the internet.
Anyone interested in finding out everything about a particular media campaign should already be aware of this. Next, everything realize that not every reads blogs and even knows what an RSS feed is. Now we get to content. As a newspaper clipping service, and broadcast monitoring service, I am keenly aware of what content from the traditional sources are available on the internet. I did a study about 8 months ago. Every newspaper that I subscribe to as a clipping service does not have a website. Less than 40% of the papers have websites. Some have full content, and others have a simple pamphlet page, or a subscription sign up page. So for one week, I clipped every article out of the major paper, in Mississippi, then compared the clips to what I could find online. I found less than 40% of the content from the papers actually made it to the internet. Some of the things that are in the paper but not on the internet, are advertisements, sports box scores, classified ads, obituaries, AP stories, and a few other things.
Next television, and radio are again not on the internet. While every television station that provides it own news content does have a website, not all of the content makes it onto the internet. The top stories are just about all that makes the cut. Radio stations will have a website most of the time, but you will be hard pressed to find a radio station that stores the news as podcast or even less that have a text feed of their news. So all of that being said, PR professionals will continue to need some one to read the newspapers, watch and log the TV news, and Radio until they are completely gone. (a very long time from now) One other critical thing to mention is how to effectively measure the audience, ad rates, and publicity values. This is simple enough in
traditional media, but can be costly. If this left to monitoring service or a clipping service, which do these things everyday, you can save a bundle by utilizing their resources. I admit that the online world is growing a lot and web 2.0 is becoming the new way to distribute press releases, and make an impression on the new media.
To address a few of the other things in this article Google alerts, and RSS feeds. Google alerts are often as many as 10 days late on indexing. Google alerts also have no boolean search syntax. This means there is not way to get a specific phrase without having to get all of the rest of the just that goes along with those keywords. Typically only 1 in 5 hits on Google Alerts will be the results from your press release. RSS feeds are not available for every news source on the internet. Again with this you must wade through the junk to get to the relevant material. To effectively monitor the media you must monitor all forms of media, Print, TV, Radio, Internet, and Web 2.o social or conversational media.
Traditional monitoring services like magnoliaclips.com can get most of if not all of the materials that you are looking for. By getting this from a one stop shop you save significantly, rather than having to pay 5 different service.