Staying ahead nowadays means much more than just savvy marketing. That’s where competitive media reporting comes in.
This systematic analysis of media landscapes and competitor activities is the key to refining and elevating your public relations (PR) and marketing strategies.
This article unfolds the components of competitive media reporting, guiding you through media monitoring, competitor analysis, essential metrics, and the game-changing tool—Determ.
What is Competitive Media Reporting?
Competitive media reporting refers to the systematic analysis and evaluation of a company’s media presence and activities in comparison to its competitors.
This practice involves monitoring, collecting, and analyzing data related to media coverage, mentions, and interactions across various channels. The goal is to gain insights into how a brand is portrayed in the media landscape relative to its industry competitors.
In essence, competitive media reporting provides valuable intelligence that can be used to refine and enhance a company’s public relations (PR) and marketing strategies.
What Are The Key Components to Competitive Media Reporting?
Key components of competitive media reporting include:
Media monitoring involves tracking and collecting data on media mentions, articles, news stories, and social media posts related to a brand and its competitors. And according to a research on PR statistics, 62% of PR professionals uses and plans to use media monitoring tools in 2024.
In Determ, when monitoring competitors, we recommend segmenting the tracking process into earned and owned channels.
Earned Channels: This entails keeping tabs on what competitors post across their own channels, including social media platforms, websites, and other owned assets.
Owned Channels: Simultaneously, it involves monitoring what is being said about them online across various media channels.
Diversifying tracking in this manner offers several benefits. Most notably, it allows you to assess whether their activity aligns with their target audiences and enables you to identify which activities resonate the most with their audiences.
Additionally, this segmentation strategy provides a proactive approach to crisis management. Since crises often emerge from audience reactions, monitoring both earned and owned channels allows you to detect potential issues early on, possibly even before they are addressed by the competitors. By seizing upon these narratives, you can turn crises into opportunities, leveraging their losses for your brand’s gain.
This approach not only enhances your competitive intelligence but also positions your brand strategically in the media landscape.
Competitor analysis goes beyond merely monitoring your rivals; it involves assessing how they are portrayed in the media, understanding their messaging strategies, and pinpointing areas where they may hold a competitive advantage.
However, it’s crucial to acknowledge that attempting to punch above your weight may not yield the desired results. For instance, a local skincare brand with 1,000 followers shouldn’t be discouraged if it doesn’t match the follower count of industry giants like La Roche-Posay or CeraVe.
Context is key. While it’s valuable to observe the strategies employed by industry leaders, it’s equally important to consider your brand’s unique circumstances. When conducting competitor assessments, prioritize those who closely resemble your brand in terms of size and target audience. This focused approach allows for more relevant insights and enables you to tailor your strategies to your specific competitive landscape.
Metrics and KPIs
When looking at what your competitors are doing, it’s easy to get caught up in analyzing their messages. But before diving into the “why” behind their marketing, it’s wiser to start with a numbers-focused strategy. Focus on specific metrics and key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure how effective your media campaigns, brand visibility, and sentiment are compared to your competitors.
Instead of immediately trying to figure out the reasons behind their messaging, begin by gathering some key numbers. How often do your competitors post new content? What’s the balance between promotional and non-promotional posts? Which keywords and hashtags do they use most successfully?
Understanding these basic metrics is just as important as grasping the meaning behind their messages. By taking a practical and numbers-driven approach, you set the stage for a more informed and strategic understanding of your competitors’ media activities. We’ll talk about the most important media monitoring metrics that can give you the best picture in the next chapter.
In competitive media reporting, benchmarking plays a big role in assessing where your brand stands relative to others in the industry. It involves comparing your media performance metrics against industry benchmarks and best practices.
Benchmarking provides a valuable measure for assessing the success of your media campaigns, brand visibility, and sentiment analysis. By comparing your performance against established standards, you gain insights into areas where your brand excels and where there’s room for improvement.
Keep in mind that competitive benchmarking isn’t about replicating the strategies of others blindly but rather about learning from the successes and challenges of industry peers. It helps you fine-tune your competitive media reporting strategy, ensuring it aligns with the current standards and expectations within your niche. Regular benchmarking activities empower your brand to stay agile, adapt to evolving trends, and maintain a competitive edge in the dynamic media landscape.
Sentiment analysis plays a vital role in competitive media reporting by providing insights into public perception of your brand and competitors. This analysis involves evaluating the tone and emotions expressed in media coverage and social media discussions.
In crisis management, understanding sentiment is crucial. Positive sentiment indicates favorable public perception, while negative sentiment acts as an early warning for potential issues. Incorporating sentiment analysis into your strategy allows for real-time awareness of how public opinion may impact your brand, particularly during crisis situations.
Additionally, when negative sentiment surrounds your competitors, it serves as a valuable opportunity. Analyzing what went wrong for them can inform your own strategies and position your brand more favorably. Conversely, observing a spike in positive sentiment for competitors offers inspiration for your next PR and marketing efforts.
Tools like those provided by Determ facilitate tracking sentiment trends, enabling proactive decision-making. Leveraging sentiment analysis in competitive media reporting goes beyond metrics; it becomes a practical tool for crisis management and strategic planning, helping your brand stay agile and responsive.
Key Metrics for Competitive Media Reporting in a Media Monitoring Tool (With Examples)
Share of voice
In competitive media reporting, an important metric to understand is Share of Voice (SOV). Simply put, SOV gives you an idea of how visible your company is compared to your competitors. The process is simple – you keep an eye on where your competitors are being mentioned in the same set of publications.
When using graphs to show SOV, it’s important to test your search terms first. Many organizations use graphs for this, but monitoring competitors’ SOV can generate a lot of information. Checking this manually for accuracy can take a long time, so making sure your search terms are accurate is really important. You don’t want to find out later that a competitor’s high SOV was actually due to incorrect keyword matches.
Furthermore, sentiment analysis is the next incredibly important metric. Adding sentiment analysis to SOV enhances its usefulness. SOV on its own counts mentions and visibility, but understanding the context is key. A high SOV from a successful product launch is different from one caused by news coverage of a crisis. Both situations result in more mentions, but the context is crucial – one is positive, the other negative.
For those who choose not to use sentiment analysis, doing spot-checks over several weeks can help establish what’s normal for each competitor’s share. This baseline can help identify sudden increases in volume, signaling the need to look at the content more closely and understand what’s causing the increase.
Lastly, when conducting thorough competitive research and assuming our analyzed competitors share the same target audience, delving into sources (or channels) becomes a valuable metric for analysis.
This metric provides insights into where our competitors concentrate their PR and marketing efforts. It reveals their preferred posting platforms (in the case of owned channels) and sheds light on potential influencer engagement and audience targeting strategies (for earned channels).
For instance, within the Reports section of Determ, we can closely examine mentions by channels for our hypothetical competitors. Our observations of skincare brands reveals that all competitors predominantly focus their mentions on Instagram.
However, a closer look shows that CeraVe and La Roche-Posay get the most mentions on YouTube, suggesting a particular emphasis on influencer marketing in this channel. Conversely, Vichy may stand out with the second-highest mention count on websites, hinting at a focus on securing media coverage, possibly through PR events or press releases. This detailed analysis of sources equips us with actionable intelligence to refine our PR and marketing strategies in alignment with the observed trends in our competitive landscape.
How to Do a Competitive Media Report in Determ?
It’s super easy to create a competitive analysis report in Determ. Let’s go through the steps it takes! For this scenario, we’re going to pose as CeraVe, a famous skincare brand. We’ll compare our brand to our main competitors: La Roche-Posay, Vichy, EltaMD & Skinceuticals.
Create the queries for tracking your competitors
First we’ll set up all the queries to track both our and our competitors’ media mentions. We’ll make sure to catch all variations of the brand name of our competitors. Here’s how it looks for La Roche-Posay.
Simplified version of the query:
Advanced version of the query:
Here’s how the folder is going to look when we’ve input all the brands.
Observe conversations happening
In the feed section in Determ, you’ll be able to see real time conversations happening online. This is how the start of the feed looks like for La Roche-Posay.
The entire feed is customizable for viewing. It can be sorted by time of publication, reach, engagement, virality, interactions. But it doesn’t stop there. There are several very useful filters that can make your viewing easier and more systematic.
The available filters are:
- Date range
- Influence score
- Reach range
- Virality range
- Engagement range
- Interactions range
- Influencers name
- Authors name
View competitor analysis report
Creating a competitor analysis report in Determ takes a couple clicks. First, you head over to your reports section and choose whether you’d like to use our template for the competitor report or create your own.
Additionally, you can take our template and customize it to your needs. That’s what we did for this example.
Let’s take a look at some chart examples from inside the report that we created.
Let’s say we wanted to launch a new campaign for our sun protection (SPF) products. Inside Determ, we’ll set up a query that will collect all mentions of SPF alongside any of our previously mentioned competitors. We’ll then go ahead and create an automated action. This feature allows us to tag the entire collected feed for certain keywords. In this case, we chose our competitors’ brand names.
From the chart above, we can clearly see who is dominating the scene when it comes to SPF. And in this hypothetical example we’re lucky, because CeraVe is the leader in the field. However, we might notice that our competitor La Roche-Posay had an exciting messaging angle that we might want to build upon and take advantage of.
Another great chart example is the word cloud chart.
This chart enables us to see which products or ingredients or problems our customers talk about alongside us or our competitors. This can be extremely useful when planning out your messaging strategy and your next campaigns focus.
With this PDF report which is fully customizable, you can go ahead and present at your next meeting. The data from this can be extremely useful in planning your next PR and marketing efforts.
Competitive media reporting serves as a crucial tool for strategic excellence. This methodical analysis, encompassing media monitoring, competitor insights, and key metrics, provides businesses with actionable intelligence to refine their PR and marketing strategies.
Through sentiment analysis, brands gain real-time awareness of public perception, allowing effective crisis navigation and strategic response to competitors’ actions. Exploring metrics like share of voice (SOV) and sources unveils crucial visibility and channel insights, empowering proactive decision-making.
As demonstrated in the guide using Determ, businesses can seamlessly create detailed competitor analysis reports, observe live conversations, and extract valuable intelligence for future PR and marketing endeavors.
Competitive media reporting is not just data; it’s a dynamic strategy enabling businesses to stay agile, adapt to trends, and maintain a competitive edge in the ever-evolving media landscape. Interested in how Determ can help you with your competitive media reporting?