Media Monitoring as a Research & Development Tool

Perri Robinson
14 March 2016

Research and development is the bricks and mortar of any successful business. Brands such as Google, Johnson & Johnson, and Volkswagen invest billions of pounds in this function every year, according to Fortune. Having billions to spend on R&D is a luxury that many companies simply don’t have, but thanks to media monitoring there’s a much cheaper way to carry out research.

Media monitoring to inform product development 

The social sphere is a researcher’s goldmine waiting to be tapped into, but where do we start? A social media monitoring tool can act as our compass and help us find direction in a sea of data. Social media monitoring can contribute to product development in a number of ways through the analysis of real, honest feedback. For example, unearthing audience wants and needs to help facilitate new product strategy. Social media monitoring can also help find faults in existing products so we can use the insights to plug the threat before our competition gets there first.

The aim of product development is to reflect the needs of the market and our audience, so it’s time to listen up and hear them out. Click here to view our previous post and find out examples of brands that are using social media monitoring for product development.


Competitor analysis 

Keeping a finger on your competition’s pulse is vital if we want to become or remain a player our competitors fear. By using a media monitoring tool, such Meltwater, we can filter conversations by sentiment and shed light on the failure and successes of our competition. Positive comments tell us the areas where they excel so we can replicate. Negative sentiment allows us to understand where they’ve failed so we can avoid doing the same. We can also filter geographic spread into the competitive benchmark analysis. If for example we know our main competitor is receiving a lot of press in China, chances are high that there’s also a need for our service in this location. Additional benchmarking metrics to consider include:

  • Media exposure
  • Trending theme word cloud
  • Share of voice
  • Top sources


Trend analysis

Research and development is a high level strategic function. Whilst it can be easy to become engrossed in what’s going on with our audience and in our industry, it’s also important to look future afield. A media monitoring tool is essential to use when conducting a macro analysis. Future changes in the economy, technological landscape and law can have a tremendous impact on future strategy throughout all corporate functions, not just R&D. It’s better to be informed than be sorry, right?

Click here to chat with a Meltwater consultant and learn additional ways a media monitoring tool can help with strategic decision making.