Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Why Internet Monitoring can not replace Traditional Media Monitoring

Print Monitoring
I looked at one newspaper in Jackson, Mississippi for one week, I tracked all of the clipping from that paper, and then compared that to what they had available online, Including ads, classifieds, and articles, and editorials, sports, and comics. Less 40% on what was in the paper was on the website. For a moment lets exclude ads and wire stories, and syndicated columns, and talk strictly about original content. Less than half of what was in the paper was on the website. Additionally only 40% of the newspaper actually had websites with content. About 20% of the papers had a pamphlet page, or a page for subscribing to the paper. Now this figure is increasing rapidly, and including Blogs of the stories on those articles in the paper, and on the website. But it is still far from being a one to one ratio for Print to Internet.

Television Monitoring
The same goes for television, they may have a write up of the story, but a write up, can only give you so much information, a picture is worth a thousand words. Now most News stations have video, and this is growing, but it is not the full newscast, it is not all of the stories, it is not full views of what aired last night. Often this will not even get onto the website for at least a day. My services offer up to the minute real time monitoring services that instantly emails you when you have a story matching your keywords.

Radio Monitoring
Media Monitoring services or Broadcast Monitoring services, not only cover TV, but they cover Radio as well. You would be hard pressed to find a radio station website that has text of the news stories that they are reporting. Most are Clear Channel, or some other large affiliate. Most Radio stations excluding NPR are just regurgitating the ABC, CBS, or FOX feed they get from the Network. The local news is a 2 minute blurb at the top and bottom of the hour. This may be available from a streaming source, but the content is not searchable unless you use a monitoring service. Magnolia records the radio in MP3 format, (not the streams) then either manually logs the stories, or send them to be indexed with a state of the art Speech to Text engine that generates searchable text.

Internet Monitoring
Google is not the same as an internet monitoring service. Google and Yahoo alerts dig only so deep on a website. When Google finds the first hit for your keywords it stops, not additional links. One thing that irritates me about Google Alerts is the lack of any Boolean search tools. No quotes, no exludes, no exact phrases… Internet monitoring services also cache the text, so when a link expires, the text is still available from that hit matching your keywords. Google does not provide any analytics for the searches either. Internet audience measurement is a trick thing, how many click, does not mean very much. You must measure other things as well. But the main question is now how do you put a dollar amount on the Internet coverage that you have received.

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