Clips Not Gyps: Because Free Online "Search" Just Isn't Enough

from Bulldog Reporter
Friday, December 2, 2023

Media monitoring provider says Google Video and Yahoo Video pose no threat to sector because PR wants-no, needs-monitoring services with muscle.

by Peter Wengryn, president and CEO, VMS

Several months ago, both Google and Yahoo announced with much fanfare that they would be providing users with the option of searching through news and entertainment content from a limited number of broadcasters and entertainment companies, based solely on keywords. Industry analysts speculated that this seemingly strategic move by these two wildly successful Internet behemoths was the beginning of the end for traditional media monitoring companies.

Nothing could be further from the truth. Services like Google Video and Yahoo Video are clearly better suited for the consumer marketplace and will never be the primary source of media content for public relations professionals.

Here's why: Both of these applications and others like them provide only a limited universe of print-and virtually no broadcast-content. In addition, simple search parameters provide the end user with myriad results that have no relevance to the intended topic. And these applications are unable to provide the actual clip that matches any given search result.

The upshot is these services don't provide the depth of functionality that PR and marketing professionals demand because they're geared to appeal to the masses. For example, these applications aren't able to measure tone and message delivery.

The PR industry (and corporate America in general) requires comprehensive monitoring of print, Internet, television and radio broadcast coverage. PR people and business leaders demand a holistic view across all media because they must understand what is being said about their companies, competitors and industries at all times. They also expect basic media metrics and content analysis because these tools help them measure ROI and the impact of media campaigns.

The media monitoring industry has established players that cover tens of thousands of print publications, including magazines and newspapers, and broadcast monitors that capture every market in the country. The major media monitoring companies have survived and, in fact, thrived because of their approach to providing their customers with relevant data in an easy-to-digest format that they can apply quickly and effectively to their respective businesses.

Simply opening the Internet floodgates so digital content associated with a certain word or phrase-including the drivel that users can post themselves-can be delivered to user desktops, to be sorted by them, is virtually useless.

PR professionals want to rise above the task of sorting through clips in a near-endless quest for a relevant and critical nugget. Media monitoring companies are experts at this, and are able to compile the content in a way that brings intelligence to the process, and in such a format that provides the PR professional with actionable information.

Peter Wengryn is president and chief executive officer of VMS, a leader in integrated media intelligence solutions spanning both news and advertising, and the only company to monitor and digitally capture content in all 210 US markets.