‘Use data to drive strategic decisions’

Members of the media and communications specialists were encouraged to engage the power of media insights as a way to form stronger relationships with their audiences and stakeholders.

Allison Demas, chief executive officer of the Caribbean Media Intelligence company Media Insite, said the dedicated collection of engagement data could provide a crucial understanding of how an organisation could improve on its perception.

“Is perception reality? Not always, so the point is, let’s use the data. Let’s take a look beneath the surface as communications marketing and media professionals and let’s use that information to drive our strategic decisions,” she said.

Demas was speaking on Thursday during a forum held at the Radisson Aquatica Resort, St Michael, exploring the power of perception and the use of media intelligence for enhanced engagement.

Allison Demas, founder and chief executive officer of the media monitoring agency Media InSite.

In attendance were several industry leaders and recognised contributors in the field of marketing and corporate communications.

During her keynote address, Demas first defined media intelligence as the monitoring of media whether by traditional channels or social media.

“Whether it’s digital, or of course social media channels, we do that in order to know what the public is saying about brands, about organisations, about competitors, industries and topics, and when they collect that data it is also important for us to measure it.

“Engagement is one of those important measurements and with the resulting data we analyse, we are then able to take strategic marketing and communications action. When we make decisions it’s based on information intelligence,” she said.

Drawing a difference between perception and what can be revealed by media intelligence, Demas ventured into the realm of political leaders.

She explained that with her global reach, Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley had drawn 37 000 mentions on public channels over the last six months – November 2023 to April 2024. This engagement peaked at 30.2 billion on December 6 following her comments that Barbados was owed nearly five trillion (US) dollars for slavery reparations.

Challenging ideas that no other leader in the Caribbean or CARICOM reached higher engagement, Demas revealed media intelligence to show that Guyana President Dr Irfaan Ali had surpassed Mottley.

Significant developments

“This is based on two very significant developments. You had the border dispute with Venezuela. To no surprise he had a very massive reach that received massive global coverage. However, it was his famous interview with the BBC’s Simon Sackur on the programme HARDtalk regarding government emissions,” she said, which pointed to the increase in engagement as a result of online news and newspapers.

Ali, she said, had a reach of an impressive 95.2 billion people and garnered 300 000 media mentions, surpassing Mottley’s metrics.

The main event of the forum was a panel discussion which included Editor-in-Chief of The Nation Publishing Co. Limited, Carol Martindale; manager of communications and Government relations with Barbados Light & Power, Jackie Marshall-Clarke; corporate communications specialist with GAIA Inc., Sharleen Browne; and Tracy Gill-Worrell, group senior design director with G& A Caribbean.

Throughout the discussion, the panellists shared several points on the importance of media responsibility and perceptions.

Martindale stressed the importance of The Nation recognising its responsibility to the public and staying true to it, especially in the face of technological advancements.

“Before we only had to focus on the newspaper but now we have social media and our reach is major. On our platforms, Instagram or Facebook, the discussion sometimes can start as one issue and then the comments go down a totally different road and you cannot dial it back. There are a lot of different issues you have to be monitoring on different platforms all at the same time. Irrespective of the platform, we still have to be responsible and credible” she said.

Browne voiced concerns about the prevailing issues of artificial intelligence (AI) in the media sphere.

“One of the things that keeps me up is the space with which technology moves. AI is a space now where you ask anything and you receive points on how it’s done.

“So when you are someone who is not a communications professional asking questions that can guide you to be a communications professional then you have people who are not equipped to share the information that they share and they don’t share it in the way that a professional would do it,” she said.

Marshall-Clarke shared that through 20 years as a communications specialist, traditional media was always her main form of information. However, the platforms provided by social media had changed the game. Media intelligence, she said, went a long way towards helping her stay on top of reach and engagements.

Gill-Worrell spoke on the value of media intelligence in preventing errors.

“We handle clients, and we handle budgets that are hundreds of thousands of dollars. When you’re an agency you are spending their money and spending it for results. It’s always a struggle between trying to push the envelope, because in the creative industry, we always want to spark conversation and probably be a little provocative, but it’s always, is this the right decision?” she said. (JRN)

The post ‘Use data to drive strategic decisions’ appeared first on nationnews.com.

Leave a Reply