(I'm so pleased to bring our readers this post by our Production Manager, Dave Kenison. Dave works with all our clients to ensure they get what they need, when they need it. You may reach Dave directly at email@example.com)
Information is everywhere. Emails, texts, tweets, status updates, news alerts –and the list could go on. Never before have we been so connected and never before have we had such a wealth of information at our fingertips. Thanks to advances in news monitoring technology, companies can know who said what about them on any blog and any tweet—sometimes within minutes. This is great, right? Maybe.
If you are a senior-level decision maker at a large organization all of this information can add up to a lot of useless noise. Good information is what drives good decisions, but how do we cut through all that noise and get just the good information? Total News Tracking’s Executive Reports solve that problem. These reports deliver hand-selected, subject-specific news--providing context for important strategic decisions. Executive Reports help any organization remain agile in the ever-changing marketplace.
At this point in our information society, we're moving past just being able to access as much information as we want. The winners in competitive markets are now looking at only the information they need.
Ask yourself this:
- What breaking news is mission critical to your organization?
- What could you be doing to move your company forward if you didn't have to start each day cutting through all the information noise?
- Is your competitor using our professional news editors to start their day before you?
Whether you are cutting through the information noise yourself, or outsourcing it to professional editors like ours, the problem of information overload is here. How deafening is the noise for you? If you need help answering these questions, or you know the answers and now need our help, let us know. Your news is our business.
[We often share kind words from our clients as testimonials on our website. However, as a highly respected PR professional, and user of Total News Tracking, Karen Boe shares specific solutions in the post below. We determined that "engagement" is truly about sharing solutions, rather than promotion, so we share Karen's application of our services with you. If you find a news monitoring or media analysis service you need, in Karen's words below, leave us a comment or give us a call. We always love talking shop. Karen is the President of Boe Marketing in Salt Lake City, Utah.]
Total News Tracking (formerly Utah News Clips) is a lifesaver for me in my public relations business. The service is professional, responsive and timely for all my immediate needs. Their new name so much better reflects the wide range of news and conversation tracking locally and nationally.
I traditionally just used them for my television and radio broadcast tracking and analysis, but have begun using the new Internet/Online/Social Media Monitoring tool, which helps me to better monitor the conversations for my clients. In addition, they now offer national press clipping services which can replace my Vocus service and their Media Analysis and Metrics modules help me to make sense of the value for each client. It's one my key client deliverables and Total News Tracking helps me to streamline and simplify the process.
As a user, I would recommend Total News Tracking to anyone needing to know what's being said about their company, where the stories are landing, and for solid reputation management.
Thanks, Karen! We've received a lot of compliments on the name change. More importantly, we're pleased to bring expanded services to our many clients
How many times have you heard the phrase, "They talk the talk, but can they walk the walk?" In the news monitoring industry we've seen many newcomers enter the space with a lot to say, and many sales people saying it. Usually, the pitch purports to do something at a lower cost, allowing you to do it yourself, or providing some automated function designed to make the job of the public relations professional easier.
All three of these service differentiators are great prospects to a news monitoring or media analysis client. In the end, users must ask themselves if they truly feel the new vendor can deliver what they promise...can they "walk the walk"?
At Total News Tracking we counsel clients with honest and direct solutions, regardless of which vendor they choose. Call this part of our "Good Karma" marketing. This post provides three easy steps to help news monitoring and media analysis users separate the talkers from the walkers.
- Don't let the price of one component of your news monitoring needs distract you from the total cost. Just like cable companies, wireless providers, and telecom services have learned, bundled media monitoring services can hide your true costs. Look at YOUR user patterns, then decide which vendor has the best overall service for you. You can save on tracking, only to get slammed with the cost of clips.
- Serving yourself can seem like a real treat, but...! If you're like most PR professionals and corporate communicators, you haven't found a hidden cache of extra hours in your day. This is a brutal reality. Do you really have the time to filter your results, preview broadcast clips, and create the tightly edited clips you need? What about creating filtered reports and measurement reports for your team? Make sure your vendor can do these things for you if needed.
- Be sure "automatic" is helpful to you, and not more harmful. With most news monitors now having computer assisted monitoring and similar portals, be aware of the vendor promise that automates tasks that only trained people can do well. For example, if you need real media measurement and metrics, don't let automated metrics thrown in at no cost drive your decision. Human analysts can analyze media to a 93% accuracy rate, automated analysis averages only a 55% accuracy rate.
Before signing on the line with any vendor, check their references and have them provide a complete proof of service. If they can only show you "some" of what they'll ultimately deliver to you, ask them why. No user, in any industry, should be afraid to make their vendors walk the walk before buying their talk.
Leave your comment with any other tips you have for checking the "walk" against the "talk". Thanks!
Yes, some of you have helped us crowdsource a new brand for Utah News Clips. The obvious risk is that we would alienate some long-time, dedicated clients as we change our name to better reflect all of our services. Come May of this year we will be celebrating three years since our expansion into complete news monitoring and analysis. Although we are still the only nationwide news monitoring service with a local service and production office in Utah, our client list has grown to include many companies outside of Utah. For this reason Utah News Clips will be changing our name to Total News Tracking.
I want to thank those who helped in our branding survey. Total News Tracking emerged as the clear winner as it "best described" the services we deliver. What does this mean to our clients? Nothing, other than you will see our name change and a different logo on our marketing materials. Our data validation, production, and sales team are right here in Salt Lake City and will remain in Salt Lake City. We feel very committed to our community and can't imagine not being a strong resident and contributor to the state of Utah.
In terms of services, we just continue to add news monitoring and media analysis services that our clients request. From Utah News Clips (becoming Total News Tracking) you can get:
- Local or Nationwide TV/Radio News Monitoring
- The ability to preview then edit important broadcast stories
- Quantitative and Qualitative metrics of all media exposure
- Press Clippings and published news content
- Web and social media monitoring
- Media Contacts and Releasing services
- NewsTrackPro: Our fully integrated portal delivering same day news from all media
What do we need? We need your help in spreading the news of our new name. Same great people, same great customer experience. But Total News Tracking is the company that organizations, large and small, are now turning to for all of their news monitoring needs. We would love to hear your comments and look forward to engaging with you as we roll out our new image.
Thank you for almost 30 years of supporting Utah News Clips. We are very excited to continue our relationship with you as our image grows to match our services.
The art of saying, "Thank you". Yes, that is the tip. At the end of each year the public relations and advertising industry explodes with predictions for the coming year. Many of these top X lists speak to utilizing the latest tools for social media, or embracing internal content to drive your communication efforts. These ideas are all good ideas as content is truly king, and the social media tools are great for amplifying your messages. For a nice example of top 2012 lists, check out this post from PRSAY (PRSA). In the end, this short post focuses on the #1 thing you can do to enhance your public relations and media relations.
This is a fundamental observation from #TheNewsTracks, it is the art of the "Thank You". Yes, providing a real "thank you" is just good business. Whether serving clients, or working with the media across any channel, showing your appreciation reinforces a relationship and helps ensure that relationship can grow.
At Utah News Clips we provided a bit of a tongue-in-cheek play on saying thank you. The real focus of this year should be on those you appreciate, so we tried to capture that in our email campaign to clients. Offering to buy our clients and friends a cup of cocoa or coffee seemed like a friendly way to say thank you.
Our news monitoring and media analysis clients are attracted to Utah News Clips because of our culture, the fact we enjoy what we do, but most of all, because we appreciate working for them. Oddly enough, the aforementioned qualities are the most often heard reasons our new clients cite for leaving their prior vendors. So if you're going to do one thing in 2012, or even here at the end of 2011, tell those you appreciate, "Thank you". Seriously, I thank you for reading my posts this year and truly look forward to helping you and your clients in 2012. Cheers!
Any public relations planning for 2012 should center around goals and objectives. With goals and objectives in place, the tools by which you gauge your success or failure can be more important than some might think. Fundamentally, if you're not comprehensively evaluating your media exposure, or shall we say not seeing what all is out there, you can get a very skewed view of your efforts.
With 2012 only a month away, we're hearing from many clients, and prospective clients, about their needs for this coming year. Yes, Utah News Clips has all the same online news monitoring tools for releasing, tracking, and analyzing your exposure as our competitors, but we're one of only a couple of companies that still dedicate account managers to help you in times of need (or even with simple questions).
Yes, it has been a year with many changes in the news monitoring industry. The primary takeaway for the clients we've been talking to is that the most vocal competitors are not living up to their promises when it comes to depth of coverage and quality of results. For this reason we wanted to get a short "planning" post out to help organizations plan for 2012. Our two step process greatly simplifies the decisions that will go into your PR efforts, and reveals the two primary questions you should ask yourself when preparing for the coming year.
1. Do you need to justify your PR efforts to your organization or client?
2. Are you spending your own time trying to piece together tracking results from free and paid sources?
If you answered yes to the first question, then monitoring the news and media is imperative. It's not a question of if you will do it, but what vendor will give you the best service to gauge the success of your efforts.
If you answered yes to the second question, then a quick cost analysis can help reveal to you how your time could be spent more cost effectively...attending to mission critical activities. Most of our clients were not hired to manage, filter, and copy/paste stories from google news, twitter, and other disparate tools. If you were hired to do this work, congratulations on landing a sweet job to surf the web. If not, you need our help.
As we re-brand our company to better reflect our national reach, it's important for any company to ensure that the client's needs are being met. Our mission isn't to simply meet your expectations, we work hard to surpass your expectations. In short, what we give our clients is far greater depth of news and media coverage, more exacting media placement results, a much higher quality of audio and video, and a true customer service experience. 24/7, nights and weekends, our team is available to help our clients. If you're not seeing this level of service from your current vendor, let's talk before 2012. If you feel you want more from your news monitoring service, whether it is Utah News Clips or another company, let's talk. We're always listening, so please leave your comments.
I've heard this phrase many times, and each time it strikes me as a riddle. Is there more to this question than the words convey? When it comes to your name, personally, the words of your name tend to take on the personality of the man or woman behind the name, not the other way around. Similarly, the name of a company or service says much about what they do...or at least it should.
At Utah News Clips we've been providing broadcast monitoring services for almost 30 years. However, since May of 2009 we have become a complete news monitoring and media analysis service. In the first 26 years we provided just what our name implied, broadcast news clips from the Utah area only. After purchasing the company in 2009, I added in the full scope of print, web, and social media monitoring to compliment our comprehensive TV/Radio monitoring. Additionally, we are now a leading provider of media measurement and analysis services.
Beyond what we do, news monitoring and analysis, our region and client base has also expanded. No longer limited to primarily the Utah region for clients, we are now serving clients across the country. What this all means is that Utah News Clips has quickly transformed into a service that can provide all the services clients need in Utah and beyond. For this reason you will begin seeing some new names coming from us. First and foremost we have brought on Chad Carpenter to power our sales and client relations effort. Chad has extensive experience in demonstrating the value of a service, which we believe will help bring our solutions to a wider range of clients. Secondly, over the next several months you will see a gradual transformation on how our brand reflects our services.
Like our primary competitors, Cision and Critical Mention, our branding and marketing will begin to better reflect the true personality of our company. We will always be a Utah company, headquartered in Salt Lake City, and staffed with Utah residents, but more information from us will reflect our expanded services and region. Again, we are still the only company with a full staff on the ground in Utah, ready to serve any need, but we need to get the word out that there is more to us than just Utah news clips. Your help in spreading that word is certainly welcomed.
Yes, we have many #newtools, but the #samerules of service apply now as much as ever. Our Core Values are:
-Deliver consistent Quality
-Surpass Client Expectations
-Honest & Direct Communication
-Maximize each team member’s strengths
I believe that it is our attention to the above values that have so strongly driven our growth in the past two years and I look forward to a very long relationship with all of our clients. Please leave a comment if you have any suggestions or feedback on what service means to your brand. We're also interested in all feedback as we begin the process of re-branding Utah News Clips.
September 2, 2011
Looking back over the past week I see a couple lessons to be learned from the bankruptcy of VMS. Many things will be said by competitors, and some past employees, but here are my takeaways.
First, the Video Monitoring Services team, VMS employees caught in the bankruptcy, are great people. I'm glad to see quality services like cision hiring some of these employees. Soon we hope to also be working with former VMS staff. These people were clearly dedicated to their jobs and serving their clients.
Second, don't believe all that you read...especially in advertising. Whether a blog or an ad, some lofty claims are being made. Phrases like "biggest", "best", and "only" are hollow terms that don't tell you a thing about the level of service and support you can expect from a news monitoring service. I encourage you to speak with Amber Smith in our office, but also do your homework. What vendor is best situated to provide the service and support you need? Technology is a tool, the people serving you can make the difference.
Finally, if you are a former VMS client the best thing you can do is interview prospective monitors. If you are a local or regional organization, there is undoubtedly a monitoring service better located to serve your needs. Local and regional monitors know what news is important to you. They know your city, state, issues, problems, etc. Our news data service has 40 offices ready to customize and serve your needs.
Use the wonderful search of Google to locate news monitoring services that may be better positioned to provide what you need. Yes, I think Utah News Clips is one of the best news monitors in the world. I would not be able to fake passion for what I do if I did not truly believe in the team I work with and the client missions we serve. We make your news our business...period.
Please let me know your thoughts, or share your experiences. Communication is what we do.
By now most have heard the biggest broadcast monitoring news in the last 35 years. The father of TV news monitoring, Video Monitoring Services, has file Chapter 7 bankruptcy. As they move to liquidate the assets of this once great company, all VMS clients are scrambling to find a service offering a similar balance of real-time reports, access to broadcast news segments, and true customer support.
As I've mentioned elsewhere, VMS did not close because of their service. Some competitors, obviously looking to grab clients by stepping on the grave of VMS, have eluded to a notion that VMS was out of touch. Just because they started the broadcast monitoring industry doesn't mean they fell behind in terms of tools, innovation, and attention to customer service. As of noon on 8/26/11, the time VMS closed forever, VMS had as powerful a set of client tools and remained focus on fulfilling every need of their clients. In fact, I stand by the notion that VMS was the company that every other broadcast monitor bench-marked themselves.
Yes, Utah News Clips has updated all their services over the past two years to compete with any national service available in the news monitoring space. Yes, Utah News Clips has been helping former VMS clients get on-board quickly so they have their news monitoring reports today. And yes, Utah News Clips sees innovation as the key to success. But as we look back on what happened to VMS I think it is important to see all that they did right. If it were not for the attention VMS gave to development, fulfillment, and customer service, they would not have been the "company to beat". In the end, it appears that a shift in management may have contributed to a loss of direction for VMS. Management structure is where we differ.
I own Utah News Clips. I am also an owner in Universal Information Services, a family business. Together these companies have lead our industry for over 20 years as innovators of news monitoring and analysis services. Our approach is very simple, we have built all the services our clients need, and the tools our competitors offer, but we also provide true customer service. True customer service is something you can't find in those who offer only an online platform for monitoring your news. Absent in the SaaS (software-as-a-service) companies is your immediate ability to reach a live person who knows your account, get on the spot training when you need it, and the ability to have someone to "just make it happen" if you're in a crisis management situation.
Today we will be working diligently to help those clients who no longer can use VMS. Our service team will continue to provide any callers with immediate attention and have their news flowing within 24 hours. We can do this because we know there are only two things that matter: Your ability to get the news you need and access to a vendor who can help you anytime you need it. Please call us if you need a company that works very much the way VMS did...and you need help now. (801) 463-0101
Utah News Clips is here to help with all your nationwide news monitoring and broadcast clip needs. We are here to help.
Interestingly, this blog post started out as an experiment to find out how engaging location-based mobile platforms truly are. Many people won't deny that they've either not heard of Foursquare, or have heard of it and asked, "But why?" Like all #newtools in the social media world, or any new tool for that matter, adoption only occurs if the question of "Why?" can be answered. Why participate in Foursquare? Why would I want to take the time, effort, or bother checking in as I travel about my day?
I've tested/played/worked Foursquare for about six months now, and my basic summation is that Foursquare does not suck. I know I've only scratched the surface of what circumstances and environments are right for location based social tools like this, but here's what I can share.
First, Foursquare seems to work best when your community, or your friends, operate on a level playing field. If for example you spend most of your days at a desk in an office, but the rest of your friends or family are mobile and moving throughout the greater environment, you will never score well. You may become Mayor of your office, or even your cubicle, but you'll never have the points you get from checking in and a variety of places. Besides, there's just not enough engagement in this scenario to make it worthwhile if you don't go anywhere.
Second, Foursquare is awesome for close groups of friends or families. When you mix the game theory with the ability to comment and post pictures, your result is a somewhat competitive platform that engages the group. I enlisted my family (2 kids, a wife, plus me). We now scramble to check-in from our smartphones, or iPOD Touch in the case of my daughter, to see who can maximize their points. You soon learn the strategy to maybe be the second person to check in and garner those additional points because your "BFF" is there. I know, kind of corny, but so is Karaoke and that's hugely popular.
Finally, Foursquare is great for business to consumer location based check-in and event check-in. Restaurants, soccer fields, movie theaters, grocery stores, office buildings, concerts are all among places you can check in. If you don't see it, add it based on the GPS location of the space you want to add. There are obvious marketing benefits to what you add and how you name it, not to mention the tips you might post...or hopefully your visitors post. Offering discounts and consumer generated recommendations are very good reasons to try Foursquare, but probably not compelling enough to be the only reason to try it.
Where I think Foursquare fails, simply because of the model and not their platform, is that it offers very little in the way of business to business engagement. I have a hard time applying the location-based game platform to a B2B model, but maybe someone can suggest ideas and leave them in the comments below. Still, at a simple level, it has provided an engaging platform that my whole family can participate in no matter where we are. I even enabled my Android phone as a 3G mobile hot spot with Verizon so my 10 year old daughter can play when there's not wi-fi in the wild for her.
Ultimately, many find a "who cares" factor kicks in after using Foursquare. Of those informally polled, about 50% said they were no longer checking in. I also believe that the over saturation of "daily deals" makes the deals provided by Foursquare less compelling. For me, I enjoy it. When visiting a new city it is nice to push for a all time high score as you visit new points.
- Customer Experience
- Media Analysis
- Media Contacts
- Media Measurement
- Media Trends & Statistics
- News Clips
- News Monitoring Tools
- News Tracking
- PR Measurement
- Press Clipping
- Social Media Analysis
- Social Media Monitoring
- Social Media Tracking
- Social Networks
- June 2012
- May 2012
- April 2012
- February 2012
- December 2011
- November 2011
- October 2011
- September 2011
- August 2011
- April 2011
- March 2011
- October 2010
- July 2010
Total News Tracking has created this blog to illuminate ideas related to the intersection of communication fundamentals and new channels of information distribution. Our media analysis and position as a news monitoring service has led us to the conclusion that the fundamental rules of public relations communications has not changed, only the tools we have at our disposal are new (#TheNewsTracks).