New Online Course: How to Fend Off Competitive Attacks on Editorial Quality
Welcome to Competitive Analysis 101: An exclusive, in-depth course designed to help you repel competitive attacks on your editorial package. Having a well-designed program to quantify your editorial prowess is the key to a solid defense. But your information-gathering process must be thorough. For example, competitive-analysis reports for at-show issues should cover 61 factors. Add another 13 for post-show assessments. Detailed separate reports measuring editorial quality require 25 factors. A comprehensive graphics focus justifies at least an 18-point review.
So yes—competitive analysis consistency is no cinch. That is undoubtedly why Editorial Solutions Inc. (ESI) has found many firms ill-prepared to weather a competitive analysis attack. Why? Some publishers claim they lack sufficient staff to do effective competitive analysis. Others maintain that quantitative editorial superiority claims are difficult to explain effectively during advertising presentations.
No matter whether such difficulties are real or imaginary, you and your content are vulnerable. For many of you, it’s time to take action. This series will help bring you up to speed on effective procedures covering print and online news. Here’s a sample of what’s in store:
Part I: Claiming an edge in exclusivity and universality: These two factors are central to achieving editorial superiority. Many advertising presentations give them lip service, but actually quantifying these advantages is all too rare. Endless numbers of observers have stressed the importance of offering original content. But in actuality, especially where news is concerned, a high percentage of content is often PR announcement rewrite or verbatim PR submission. Your goal should be to ensure that at least 60% of news content reflects your own enterprise reporting. Competitive Analysis 101 explains how to calculate the degree to which your current content exceeds or misses the boat.
Part II: Be prepared for unpleasant surprises. The introduction of quantitative editorial analysis could be shocking. In several past cases, publications that produced an “us versus them” comparison discovered that the editorial leadership position they claimed had been successfully usurped by tough competitors. This installment will review an example of what went wrong in a case involving an at-show issue match-up. Spoiler alert: A common at-show issue editorial error is a tendency to fill excess pages with endless exhibitor lists and exhibit hall diagrams, both of which are ably covered in show directories. A lack of original content proved to be the publication’s downfall. But the potential for unpleasant surprise can arise in many other ways.
Part III: Avoid these eight common online news goofs. ESI has conducted seven annual studies of B2B e-news effectiveness. Over the years, results have detected eight common flaws that distinguish between winners and losers in an editorial match-up. ESI recently revised its scoring system to serve as an alert for online media planners. This installment will review the newest version. The latest study, Phase VII, recommended a minimum target score of 80 out of a possible 100 points. Nobody reached that goal. For the previous six studies, the target minimum score was 60 points. Of the collective 300 sites evaluated, only 43 made the grade. How would you have done? You’ll have a chance to find out.
Additional installments will be provided based on reaction to the initial three parts, so be sure to share your comments!