Nonprofits that keep their ears perked by employing listening devices are well-poised to strategically respond to what others are saying about your organization.

Online “listening” can refer to a number of tactics—social media monitoring, target audience analysis or key message penetration—but we find that monitoring media coverage is one of the most effective tools for listening to what others are saying.

Specifically, monitoring media coverage provides assistance with the following important communications duties of your organization:

Monitor Your Online Reputation

Tracking what media outlets and bloggers are saying about your organization and its leadership can be key to understanding your online reputation and how you might improve or leverage it.

If there’s a negative media story about your organization, you want to be the first to see it so you can act quickly and respond before others respond for you.

Conversely, positive media coverage can demonstrate the impact of your work, so you’ll want to capture and share it quickly with funders and partners who may be paying attention.

Curate Content for Online Channels

Positive media stories make great content for your social media channels and sometimes can be repurposed for your blog, demonstrating to your online audiences that you are making strides in your work.

Promoting coverage in your online “news” section, on your blog, on social media or in your e-newsletter will show target audiences who visit your channels that you are a recognized leader in your work.

Track Media Relations Results

If your team is pitching media to receive coverage on a campaign, event or otherwise, monitoring media coverage is a smart way to see how your efforts are paying off.

We use Google Alerts and Talkwalker Alerts to track our client’s media coverage; both allow you to select the keywords you want to track, then they send any online mentions of those keywords straight to your email inbox.

Beyond the basic alert terms you might already be tracking, like your organization’s name and the names of your leadership, we suggest doing a Google “news” search of keywords from your pitch, such as the event title or press release headline.

Why does your nonprofit monitor its media coverage? Share with us below!