One of my favorite internet radio hosts shared with me a posting by Duncan Riley of TechCrunch entitled PR Newswire and Umbria Team Up for Blog Tracking. The gist of it is that PR Newswire and Umbria have come together to offer a service for tracking blogger comments about your business. (This is a neat service!) Riley questions the need for such a service when you can get the same info from Technorati. He goes on to question whether people are just lazy.
This service and others like them will be popular because people are busy. Truth be known, corporate communications departments and PR firms have been using clip services for years (companies like Bacon’s that actually cut your articles out of newspapers and magazines and mail them to you). This is just the web 2.0 equivalent of a clip service.
But the more exciting point here is that a fairly significant industry player has brought a service to the mainstream market that monitors blogs. Why? Because it would appear corporate communications folks are finally starting to pay attention to bloggers and are now demanding services that will allow them to monitor them like other mainstream media.
The addition of bloggers, or so-called citizen journalists, to the target media lists of clients presents both problems and opportunities but the upside far outweighs the downside. With an increasingly fragmented media, small and niche organizations have far more opportunities to gain exposure to very targeted markets in their back yard and around the world. I’m pretty excited about the prospect.