Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Measuring Media - It's More Than Followers

So many people that engage with the media get this wrong. And you can't blame them.

Everyone wants to be a success, so there are companies out there that will 'support' you. They'll sell you 'followers'... They'll sell you 'likes'... They'll even sell you 'listens' on audio-hosting platforms like SoundCloud.

While this isn't illegal, MicroMedia considers this practice not only unethical (these aren't people, they're lines of code that don't appreciate what you're doing) but I consider it completely irrelevant and unecessary.

The number of followers you have doesn't generate effect. Effect is generated when individual followers do something you desire with the information or message you give them.  Would you rather have 10 followers that engage with nearly everything you post, or 1.5k 'code'-followers that just make your profile 'look better'?

When measuring the effects of your media engagement, you need to break it into three areas:

Measure of Activity

This is how much effort you are putting into getting your messages out there. It could be the number of tweets you've sent, the number of hours you've crafted Facebook posts or even how many traditional press releases you've emailed.

You set the measure. But this information will enable you to start determining which channels are working best, where to focus your efforts and where you need to improve.

Measure of Performance

This is what these companies are offering you... Followers, likes, shares et al. But they are only performance. You could follow a band on twitter for years, but until you buy their album or tickets to their next concert, they haven't realised the effect they wanted.

So here is where you want to record the number of followers, shares, likes, comments, press releases that turn into articles and the like. But don't think for one second that they are effects.

Measure of Effect

And this is the hardest part of all. How do you know that you've had an effect? How do you know that the effect was generated by your media interaction? And most importantly...

What effect were you trying to achieve?

Sales, footfall, website visits...? Maybe its just getting someone to repeat your message unaltered...?

This is where you have to apply the grey matter. This is where you should start. This is where you may need assistance.

What effect do you want to have? Who can generate that effect? What do you need to tell them? Where will they hear your message? How can you identify if their actions were caused by my media engagement?

None of this has an easy answer. But one thing's for certain:

You can have as many followers as you like, but unless you know what you want to achieve... How do you know you're leading them in the right direction?

Friday, 18 March 2016

Why MicroMedia?

Because my military experience has taught me that the vast majority of advertising and marketing companies have got it wrong. And before anyone asks "What the heck has military experience got to with it?" I'll come to that in a later post.

Everyone appears to be confused as to who is working for who - or more importantly, who owns who? The MicroMedia tag line is:
  • Use the media...?
  • Own the media.
  • Be the media...!
It's just basic supply and demand. The media provides products for you to consume. But if you don't consume (demand) those products, they've got no one to supply.

Let's take it a step further. The media needs stories. Those stories become products. So where do they get the stories? In the case of drama and situation comedies, they'll have a bank of writers. But let's take the extreme example of reality television - it's the participants that provide the stores, the media companies just package (and sometimes exaggerate) them.

I'm not suggesting you or your company need to get yourself onto a reality television programme - so let's look at the news. News reportage is just telling stories. So where do they get their stories?

From you.

Everyone - every company, every individual - has a story to tell. A night at the pub would be rather boring without them. But is your story worth anything to the media?

I was once told by a well-respected newspaper journalist, that the media are looking for one of 3 things:
  • Exceptional people doing exceptional things.
  • Exceptional people doing ordinary things.
  • Ordinary people doing exceptional things.
Examine that list long and hard and you might be able to form a link between yourself or your organisation to the last of these 3 statements. With MicroMedia's assistance, I can show you that when you really examine what you are doing - you're the first.

Let's go back and revisit supply and demand. You are supplying the stories. The media have a demand for those stories - otherwise they have nothing to package to supply to their audiences.

So now we're in a situation where you're the supplier and the media are the demander. Or as MicroMedia put it - You 'Own the Media'.

Now you've got 2 options:
  • You can supply the media.
  • You can 'Be the Media'.
And I say, do both.

Now, explain to me again why you need to be reliant on marketing and advertising companies?