Why Small- and Medium-Sized Businesses Should

by : Kathrin Koehler

As the owner or an employee of a small- to medium-sized business, you might have never thought about media monitoring. Maybe you are not even sure what exactly is meant by this and have thus ignored it so far. But you should take some time to get acquainted with the concept of media monitoring. For companies of every size, it is a crucial tool for market success.

When you monitor the media, you basically look for all the information that is beeing published about your company in different media formats like newspapers and magazines. But what is the benefit you get from this search process? Do you only end up with a waggon load of data or can this scanning give your company the cutting edge?

The answer is yes, it can. It is not something only big firms with large public relation staffs do benefit from, but every organisation or company. It can accomplish a variety of tasks including

  • control how and how often your company is being portrayed in public

  • follow-up any PR-activities you might have launched

  • examine how your competitor’s media-image looks like

  • discover new trends in your specific profession and

  • analyse market developments.

These aspects are relevant for companies of every size. Imagine you are a small company producing a certain product, for example computer hardware components. You think media monitoring does not apply to you because you produce your goods locally and do not compete with “global players" who spend millions on their media campaigns?

Well, in this case, size does not matter. It is still important how the people living in the community where you are located react to your business. It is still important that you are among the first who catches a new trend concerning your product range – or otherwise another small enterprise may come up with the innovation that you could also have produced. These are only two small examples that show why media monitoring is so important.

If you are opposed to media monitoring because your company only has a small budget for public relations, think twice. Especially if you only have a small amount of money at hand to promote your company, it is essential to follow up every PR activity to make sure that money is well-invested.

For media monitoring, a simple concept applies: only when you know what is going on you can react accordingly. So do not only go through your local or regional newspaper and expert publications, but broaden your horizons. Filter the internet for information about your trade and company. With the help of search engines, hundreds of websites, online-publications and databases can be sorted through. There are also professional monitors how can do this job for you. In any case, media monitoring is worth the effort – regardless of your company’s size.