Why go to Blockbuster when you can have Netflix?
As a kid of the 90s, I’ve lived through the days when if you wanted to watch a new movie you’d head out to the high-street rental store to pick up a VHS hoping it was in-stock once you got there. Fast forward to today, when you can simply log on to your on-demand video platform account to instantly watch a film or binge on a boxset.
But why am I even mentioning this?
I believe the world of PR and Communications has experienced a similar shift thanks to advancements in technology. Legacy media monitoring providers are not dissimilar to the video rental stores of yesteryear while cutting-edge media intelligence platforms (like Signal) are the convenient equivalent of on-demand entertainment systems.
Here’s how I see it:
Chasing a middleman vs self-service
A couple of decades ago, a movie night at home started with a trip out to the video store, searching for the right empty box on the shelf before queuing up to ask the cashier to fetch the corresponding VHS from out the back of the shop.
There are distinct similarities in the world of media monitoring. With legacy providers, while you don’t need to go to a store, you probably do need to go through your account manager to set up a new search or change an existing one.
Nowadays, with both on-demand entertainment and real-time media monitoring it’s as simple as logging on to the platform to find what you need. You don’t have to ask someone to find you a movie or set up a new search. The power is well and truly in your hands. The intuitive user interface makes it easy for you to get things done with just a few clicks, which brings me nicely on to my next point.
Getting delayed vs getting on with it
Throwback to 1999 and you know exactly what you want to watch on movie night. In theory, it’s a relatively quick visit to your nearest video rental store. But the shop is packed with what seems like a mile long queue to the cashier, and of course, you are at the very end of it.
Now imagine the cashier is your account manager, and the store is your legacy media monitoring provider. Whether you want to set up a new search or change an existing one, you’ll probably need to go via your account manager, and for various reasons, they might not be able to apply your change immediately.
With real-time media monitoring services like Signal and on-demand entertainment systems, you simply log into the platform and search and find what you need without having to request and rely on someone else. You don’t have to wait around – you can get things done immediately.
Pay-per-content vs pay a set fee
One of my vivid memories from the video store experience is how long it often took me to pick between two movies. Having to pay per rental was a source of pressure on my young shoulders and half-empty purse. Just how do you choose between Home Alone or Die Hard as your Christmas movie? Legacy media monitoring providers put you under similar pressure. Being charged per article delivered, keywords or searches means you need to choose carefully what you want to monitor (hoping it won’t exceed your budget). Would you rather monitor competitor X or spokesperson Y?
The 2010s brought a pay-a-fixed-fee-and-enjoy-all-the-content-you-want model to the streaming world. By subscribing and paying a fixed cost for a set number of licenses, you can now access as much content as you wish. You can decide to watch the entire ten seasons of Friends for the fourth time (haven’t we all done that?) or broaden your horizons by bingeing on the Great British Bake Off at no extra cost. New media intelligence platforms such as Signal provide you with the same flexibility. You are free to create as many searches as needed and access content without being hit with additional fees. Want to track a new competitor? Want to build a brief to prepare a pitch for a potential new client? Want to monitor a new topic to gather intelligence? It’s all feasible without additional costs or fuss.
If you would like to see how Signal can help you in 2019, please get in touch or request a demo.
Sara Chaouch | Agency Specialist, Business Development
I introduce Signal’s solutions to PR agencies. With over two years of experience in the SaaS industry, I understand the media intelligence needs of PR agencies and support them to provide the best client experience.
Phone: +44 (0) 2038 897435