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Real-Time Brand Monitoring for PR

June 15, 2011

When it comes to monitoring your brand, there’s a lot to take in. From social media outlets such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, to blogs, news publications, video sites and comment forums, monitoring your brand can be incredibly overwhelming. While a Phoenix public relations firm can take care of brand monitoring for you, it’s best to know what they’ll be looking out for and how you can help.


PR and Brand Monitoring

A PR professional, as one time not too long ago, was responsible for your brand image. This huge responsibility was maintained through the relationships that PR professionals have with news outlets, business leaders and other brands. If there was a disruption to the public image of a brand, the PR pro would swoop in, make some phone calls, shoot out some press releases, and fix the miscommunication, repairing the brand. While that is still a huge part of PR, repairing inaccurate perspectives regarding your business brand reaches far greater than just TV and print.


Measuring the Message

Once the advertising team has delivered the brand message, or is delivering the message on a daily basis, it’s the PR’s responsibility to make sure the message is being received correctly. If the target audience is misreading the message, misinterpreting the meaning of a brand, this is where the PR pro needs to step in and suggest repairs.


Measuring the brand message was once as easy as clipping newspaper articles from local print, and recording any pieces that might make the six-o’clock news. The public relations professional would deliver an end of the month report that was a stack of clippings, possibly with some market research on reader reactions. This technique of brand measurement was not only one dimensional; it was not intuitive of how a brand’s target audience was truly responding to the brand message.


Today, if a brand message or brand image is misinterpreted or just plain ‘unliked’ by the audience, you don’t have to wait until the end of the month to find out. In most cases, you don’t even have to wait until the end of the day; you know within a few minutes if people are responding positively or negatively.


Beyond The Clippings

Today, public relations professionals must be monitoring your business brand on every single medium that allows for free expression, which is basically the entire internet. They must have the tools to allow them to monitor many platforms and mediums, instantaneously reacting and repairing false statements. When it comes to brand monitoring, many public relations firms enlist the help of companies with ‘command centers’ where real-time brand mentoring is executed every day of the week.


Measuring beyond the clippings involves sentiment analysis; measuring the tone of conversations regarding the business brand. This leads us back to the same old argument; qualitative or quantitative metrics? In this case, PR professionals should be using both. By plotting not only things like the amount of Facebook “Likes,” Twitter ReTweets, blog mentions and forum comments, but things like positive or negative sentiment, public relations professionals can take a look at the bigger picture. Instead of reading every single tweet or every mention throughout the day, PR teams can look at the big picture of whether the reaction to the brand message is positive or negative.