Journalists Worldwide Trust Earned Media Coverage to Drive Brand Reputation Twitter Named Most Influential Social Platform

BEIRUT, Lebanon, June 21, 2019 – Today,Ogilvy announced the findings of its 2019 Global Media Influence Survey at the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity, which revealed that corporate announcements such as financial reporting, CSR initiatives and strategic business decisions are most influential in shaping earned media coverage and driving brand reputation worldwide. The survey of more than 300 journalists found that these tactics in isolation significantly outweigh the power of third-party endorsements such as social media influencers, highlighting the continued importance of sound earned strategies in an increasingly diversified media landscape.

The survey also found that Twitter is the social media platform that most often informs reporters’ coverage, ranked first by an average of 48% of reporters worldwide compared to 29% of those who cited Facebook or Instagram. 

“We continually see brands looking for ways to break through in a media landscape that is constantly in motion and increasingly noisy, but once again we see that earned media is at the core of establishing longstanding, trusted reputation,” said Tara Mullins, Senior Vice President of Ogilvy’s Media Influence offering. “What’s interesting this year is that on average, earned coverage appears to live longest on Twitter, likely due to Twitter’s ability to compile major headlines of the day and streamlining the discovery process with users never having to leave the platform.”

The survey also found that an overwhelming majority of journalists (89%) research past coverage in their reporting, a reminder that both positive and negative stories live forever online and emphasizing the lasting impact of earned media strategies. To that end, a plurality of reporters (46%) believe a balanced combination of earned, owned and paid media is necessary to successfully manage corporate reputation and influence their coverage. An average of only 10% of journalists worldwide cited third-party social media influencers alone as the most impactful contributor to brand reputation. 

Additional key findings include:

  • In North America, EMEA and Latin America, Twitter is the platform that most often informs reporters’ coverage. In Asia Pacific (APAC), Facebook and its Instagram platform are the most impactful (41%), followed by WhatsApp (34%) with Twitter a distant third at 20%.
  • Overall, Facebook ranks second to Twitter in social media influence worldwide (29% to 48%, respectively). WhatsApp ranks third overall with an average of 17%. Snapchat is the social media platform least likely to inform coverage, trailing not only Twitter and Facebook but also WhatsApp, WeChat, LinkedIn and Glassdoor.
  • Latin American journalists consider government policies and regulations more influential on coverage (71%), ranking social media dead last among influencing factors. Latin American journalists are also more likely to consider industry developments such as stock market performance in their coverage of brands and companies.
  • North American journalists are more circumspect toward the influence their coverage has on a company or brand’s reputation. A majority of North American reporters believe their coverage has only “Some” impact on shaping reputation (61%), while their counterparts in APAC, EMEA and Latin America all say they have “A lot” of influence (53%, 61% and 79%, respectively).

Now in its sixth year, Ogilvy’s Global Media Influence Survey has quickly become an indispensable industry resource, surveying hundreds of reporters and editors around the globe from 22 offices across North America, EMEA, APAC and, for the first time, Latin America.

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