Here at SHIFT, we pride ourselves on an approach to communication and public relations that weaves together art and science. So, it stands to reason that we extend that thread through into our media strategies for our clients, ensuring what we propose or content we craft is rooted in insight from data and research.
Sometimes, it’s about finding data points to include in pitches to bolster your client’s idea or announcement. Other times, data can help us find the right times to pitch a subject; and still others, it’s best for background research to inform your approach.
Here are a few tried-and-true and new sources to consider infusing into your team’s plans:
Google Trends – Google Trends is mostly about the “when” and “how often” for media relations. This resource helps us look at Google’s plethora of search data to find spikes in key search terms.
It can help with seasonality – for example, searches for “snoring” over the past five years notably rise around Christmas and New Year’s Eve. If you have a stake in the sleep aid game, you should be actively engaging with media (and consumers) at that time.
It can also help validate claims we make in pitches. For example, we can notice that the wellness and mindfulness space is trending. Checking in Google Trends (below), you can that searches for it are notably rising. This data helps show media that there are data-driven reasons why an article about mindfulness tips would resonate with their readers.
Pew Research – On the traditional side, Pew Research is still booming and is regularly commissioning new studies. As a heritage, long-standing source, Pew adds cache for more academic, research-focused reporters. Other prestigious primary sources not to forget about are government sources like the CDC or Data.gov.
Pew Research also helps with background research; it’s notably excellent for generational insights as well as population trends. Spending time reading reports about target audiences and what’s important to them builds your understanding and thus your media strategy. You may find, for example, that data doesn’t support what you thought Gen Z cared most about, allowing you to pivot accordingly.
Think with Google – Beyond its search data, in January 2017, Google began commissioning its own research reports, market analyses and insights garnered from subject matter experts. Enter: Think with Google, a comprehensive, easily-searchable database of both articles and statistics.
Think with Google is mostly focused on digital insights, and you’ll find your best content if you keep your searches broad. If you have a healthcare client, search “health” instead of a more specific term – it’ll bring you data like this that you could apply to your programs and tweak from there.
Keep in Touch
Want fresh perspective on communications trends & strategy? Sign up for the SHIFT/ahead newsletter.