By Kirsten Robinson
It’s one thing for communicators to listen to people—and quite another to be able to do something about what you’re listening to. A good listener will ask the right questions and use a mix of tools to harvest important information. But a smart listener knows that it’s not enough to just take note; they recognize the best way to really understanding stakeholders’ wants and needs is to integrate the resulting data.
A disjointed approach to media monitoring causes many Communications teams to miss out on big opportunities to understand and then ultimately influence their stakeholders. But you can avoid this mistake by being a smart listener, too. Check out the examples set by these smart companies:
- Integrated technologies. Instead of using media monitoring as an “after” indicator of their success, Monsanto uses a stakeholder-centric system across all media to identify the top issues stakeholders care about “before” they roll out messages. This enables the company to then tailor communications to resonate with specific audiences.
- Integrated teams. We all know that dialogue is an important source of information. Best Buy doesn’t just limit monitoring to one or two separate individuals in Communications—they have a dialogue team within the department to provide integrated listening support to communicators (and the business).
- Integrated projects. Best Buy’s dialogue team integrates data from a variety of listening tools to clarify the root causes of specific communications issues. For example, the company’s Survey, Observe, and Drill Down tools build off of each other for a more collective view of employee concerns.
Be sure to check out these related blog posts—To Communicate, First Question: 4 Tips for Asking Good Questions; Best Buy’s Employee Listening System; and Media Monitoring: A New Approach.