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March 30, 2008


Hiya mate,

I understand that different situations apply from client to client but, I must admit, I'm of the belief that monitoring work should be outsourced to specialist companies.

I agree that PR people (not just in social media but in general) should be consuming a shed load of media on a daily basis. It's our job.

At the same time though, I think their (our) time is better spent elsewhere - as opposed to wading through random and irrelevant (often spam) blogs looking for the good stuff.

Imagine if you've been briefed to conduct research into the last six months' worth of conversation of a multinational tech company like, for example, Sony. Or what about a brand name that's a generic word like Apple.

Can you imagine the amount of cr*p you'd pull up and the time it would take? Phew!

Surely it would be cost effective to use a specialist company than using a SAE/AM to do it?

Speaking from first-hand experience I know what conversation audits entail and I'm of the belief that it's not PR's role to find the data, its role is to interpret it.

My 2peneth. :-)


1,For every paid monitoring tool there is a free tool out there, just as good if not better.(money saver) - in social media all tools should be free!

2, If yourself or other team members are actively monitoring the blogosphere you will always find other materials and ideas for use in your campaigns.

3, Part of a good PR role nowadays should be to monitor RSS feeds so you can act quickly swiftly to meet campaign goals.

I have some doubts about the accountability of the monitoring work being conducted as an outsourced project.

As Drew says, ‘looking for issues and current affairs is done through living and breathing the media.’ And, as public relations practitioners, you know exactly what you are looking for, not external agencies. It might also be a very time consuming task to make sure your requirements are understood by agencies.

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