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  • Writer's pictureFIBEP

Grab-a-bite - Operating international accounts from home

6th of May, 2pm CEST Moderated by Sophia Karakeva, CMO at DataScouting, FIBEP Vice President

Attendees: 1. Magdalena Horanska, FIBEP Secretary General 2. Ed Clarke, Global Ad Source, Canada 3. Williams Pinilla, GlobalNews Group, Argentina 4. Itsik Benayahu and Golan Ben David, Ifat, Israel 5. Kanika Dayal, Impact Research & Measurement, India 6. Lucie Geislerova, Newton Media, Czech Republic 7. Nika Čegec, Presscut, Croatia 8. Karolina Fursewicz, Press-Service Monitoring Mediow, Poland 9. Simon Dabbs, Newsclip, South Africa 10. Lee-Anne Morrell, Ornico, South Africa 11. Marilena Vagiati, InNews, Greece 12. Romina Gersuni, pressreletions, Germany 13. Danijela Knap, Kliping, Slovenia

Grab-a-Bite is a new format of online meetings intended for FIBEP members. The new FIBEP concept has been designed to bring the entire FIBEP community together and enable sharing experience in these uneasy times. The coronavirus decided to put us all into unprecedented situations and prevent us from meeting in person. Grab-a-Bite is part of the FIBEPShares initiative.

The second Grab-a-Bite was dedicate to Operating International Accounts from Home and was moderated by Sophia Karakeva, Communications and Marketing Executive at DataScouting and FIBEP Vice President. The event attracted 13 people from different continents. We were happy to see members from Europe, Canada, Argentina, India and South Africa.

Key takeaways from the 2nd Grab-a-Bite

Working remotely but at full capacity

All participants confirmed that their companies managed very fast to adjust to remote work with no major obstacles, remain operational and at full capacity. Some even predicted the spread of the coronavirus in their regions and made the transition from office to home working their countries went into lockdown. The coronavirus has surely changed the dynamic within teams / departments.

Technology transition Companies were forced to apply lots of their technological skills into being able to work remotely. So, from this perspective, technology transition has been interesting. Being able to maintain production facilities from one day to the next and making sure they remain fully operational. So all of them proved how resilient they are and how fast they can respond in crisis situations.

(International) sales have suffered but new services are on offer Almost all participants admitted seeing a reduction of clients receiving international clipping services. Yet, at the same time they have seen growing demand for other services, such as insights (covid-19 bulletins). Copyright fees were also mentioned as a general argument for less demand for international clippings in countries with strict copyright regime. Things were better for those working with government bodies and the public sector who still find the media monitoring service very important. Those with pricing structures based on fix fees believe their clients can cope – at least for now – with less clippings, as media coverage has been dominated by coronavirus stories.

Client service For most it has been a learning experience and the situation calls for different measures for different clients. Almost all companies have seen clients either suspending their contracts or cancelling the service. To help their clients, and especially those from sectors most affected (such as travel, tourism, retail), most companies have come with different solutions to support them until the situation improves. At the same time, they have seen opportunities in less affected sectors, such as education or e-commerce, and are exploring new opportunities. There is a rising demand for new, different services.

Retaining clients There is an understanding that clients have either suspended or cancelled their contracts because of the bad financial situation, which once improved, they would come back. And some have already seen some clients coming back. But, these are difficult times to be making decisions. Negotiations are still on the table and the question is how to pitch smart: how to get back clients who have cancelled but at the same time not to offer them too much. Companies might have to come up with a new language to convince clients they should keep their media monitoring service running. Currently there are no plans of proactively reaching out to new clients, as most companies are currently concentrating on keeping their current clientele.

Showing empathy and solidarity

Staying connected with their clients was one of top priorities for all, even if that means working twice as much to remain in touch with clients. They made sure their clients were well informed of what is happening in the industry, from media perspective, and around covid-19. Being flexible is crucial at these times. During these times of high uncertainty, they assured their clients that their service will not be interrupted nor would it impact their capacity to deliver as before, sticking to timelines and ensuring the same high quality. Also, some have created a back-up plan of special offers, especially for clients from most affected sectors.

A post Covid-19 outlook for the media intelligence industry The coronavirus will change the media intelligence industry. We will have to go from very simple media monitoring clipping service (we should bear in mind that some markets still rely heavily on traditional media) to more insights, information management, and even business consultancy. For some companies, the seamless move from office to home has proved more productive and it has actually improved client care. So working from home might become the new normal.

A special thanks goes out to Karine of the FIBEP Secretariat for the wonderful organization of the event.

The Grab-a-Bite events take place twice a month and are moderated by members of the FIBEP Board. For more details, please follow FIBEP website, or social media channels, or contact the FIBEP Secretariat.

By Sophia Karakeva, Communications and Marketing Executive at DataScouting, FIBEP Vice President

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