We are in a media climate where demand is high for powerful stories that are corroborated by data.
What this means for brands is that investing the effort and money into gathering proprietary data and using the findings to tell a powerful and provocative story is one of the most effective catalysts for driving meaningful press coverage. A longstanding practice of PR pros and the thought leaders they represent has been to “newsjack” already-trending research findings and statistics by offering their take on the topic.
However, in today’s noise-filled, crowded field of experts clamoring for coverage, it’s the one who controls the proprietary data that has the power to control the narrative.
The good news for marketers is that technology has made it immensely simple to generate your own research. Whether it’s polling your audience or customers through social media, your email list or a website survey, or even using a third party service such as Survey Monkey to reach people outside of your existing audience, gathering data has become less expensive and time-consuming.
The key to creating value from a survey is knowing the right questions to ask (that tie your findings into a newsworthy topic), surveying a statistically significant number of people, and then identifying which of your findings are the most provocative or worthy of coverage.