Journalists are the ultimate influencers and targeting the right ones is critical to succeeding with pitching initiatives. Earning media coverage starts with media research and developing relationships with journalists.
This preparation will help you identify who your pitches will resonate with, and you can tailor them to optimize for successful outcomes. No doubt, this is hard work, but it pays off. It will make your pitching stand out against others who rely on generic email blasts that are more likely to hurt their reputation than earning them media coverage.
In this article, we cover how you can do media research in Meltwater to discover relevant contacts and publications.
Finding Contacts or Publications writing about a specific topic
To get started:
Go to Media Relations via the left-hand side navigation bar
Select Search from the top tabs
Via the 'I'm looking for' option, select to look for individual contacts or sources
Use the search bar to look for journalists by a topic they write about. Enter your topic.
Choose the option"All Contacts writing about" from the dropdown
Unless you are looking for a specific person or publication, we recommend starting your research with a topic that is relevant to your pitching initiative. Journalists that have written extensively on topics that are central to your pitch are likely to be much more receptive.
Choose the option "All Contacts writing about" from the dropdown to search our content library and display people who have written about this topic in the last 14 days. Adjust the date range if you need to go further back by clicking the calendar icon.
Finding Contacts or Publications by name
If you are looking for a specific person or publication, start typing in their name. If you don't find the right result in the "top results" preview (see below), click on "All Contacts named" to see more results.
From time to time you may come across what appears to be a duplicate source, but is actually an Edition and a Bureau. An Edition is the main publication and will list all contacts for that publication, regardless of the writer's location. The Bureau is a smaller, local office and will only list the contacts for that specific office. For example, the New York Times is a very large, international publication, and in addition to the main New York office, there are also Bureaus in cities such as Atlanta and Chicago. In the database, the Edition will typically have circulation numbers, unique visitor numbers, and beats while the Bureau will typically be labeled as such in the publication name.
Refine your search by using filters
'Filter By' helps you narrow your focus. If your pitch will be regionally focused, the Location filter will likely be relevant. If reaching a large audience is part of your objective, try the Reach filter. Different filters are available to assist your media research. Consider your goals when making your selections. More details on our filters are provided below.
To help you keep track of the choices you have made, context is offered below the search bar that explains what you are currently searching for (2). Click on the filter category to understand what is selected in each filter.
Switching between Contacts and Sources
Toggle between a contact and a source search above the search bar. Click the text in blue to display the drop-down menu.
Vetting Contact Profiles
As you refine your search and start to identify contacts you are potentially interested in, you will want to vet them further, before adding them to your lists.
Click on a contact's name, to open their mini-profile, to the right side of the screen. In the mini-profile, you will see the following details:
Name and location
There is also a link to view the full profile for this contact, which will open in a new tab.
On the full contact profile, you will have more details to view, including:
Authority score (based on number of followers and tweets)
Following and followers
Content stream with recent articles
All published content (articles and tweets)
Ability to run Keyword searches
Actions you can take - tag them, share,
Metrics on the documents themselves (reach, social echo, sentiment)
Tweets - reach, engagement, and sentiment
Date filter going back 1 year
Sentiment on the articles and tweets
Tweet metrics (reach)
We surface language on the profile
Any known aliases
Social media handles appear on the profile page when available - Pinterest,
YouTube, Instagram, Sina Weibo, and WeChat.
If they are already in any of your Media lists
Interactions between you and them
Add a contact to a media list
Check out this product tutorial which will walk you through the steps on your screen.
For further details into using the Search bar, refining by Filters, and adding a contact to new or existing lists, please review our How to Create and Organize Media Lists article.
Your current media lists can be found on the My Contacts page.
Note: adding a source (publication) to a media list isn't supported.
Using your Searches to find Contacts
Did you know that you can also pivot any of the searches you have saved for monitoring purposes to get access to the journalist profiles in our database?
This is particularly helpful when you need more complex searches (e.g. the ability to exclude certain keywords). Click "Contacts" to view the profiles (see below).
Thank you for reading. If you have any further questions, feel free to reach out to us via Live Chat!