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Article • 16/08/2023

‘Say this, not that’: New Signal AI feature promises to eliminate the narrative guesswork of PR and Comms

Every company strives to shape the perfect narrative that’ll make a big splash and land earned media. But in an increasingly crowded messaging landscape, it’s never been harder for PR and comms professionals to identify angles that break through.

Today, finding original and relevant narratives is arduous and rife with guesswork: PR and comms teams must spend endless hours crafting queries to find potential topics while still missing out on valuable ideas they haven’t thought to search for.

What if there was a better way? What if AI could scan the horizon and identify what topics to explore and which areas competitors are entering? What if it could measure the size of opportunities and spot fresh ones not on the radar? What if it could help PR and Comms teams figure out what they should say and what they shouldn’t?

Signal AI’s new Topic Analysis feature offers precisely that: An artificial intelligence-based solution that enables users to easily discover and understand the nuanced connections between topics and their businesses—and even with competitors and individuals. Combined with Signal AI’s human-curated insights reports, it arms companies with the differentiated narrative whitespaces and strategies needed to become thought leaders and win a greater share of voice.

Too much work, too many ‘unknown unknowns’

Conventional narrative mapping tools are mostly Boolean based, meaning that PR and comms teams must manually create lengthy, complex queries to search data sets. This approach has two major drawbacks. The first is the amount of work required: An effective Boolean search has to be carefully crafted, and refining the insights requires continually sifting through the results and adding to the query.

The second issue is direction: It’s necessary to tell conventional tools what to explore, leaving them blind to “unknown unknowns” — often the source of the greatest untapped media opportunities.

Finally, even when these tools are able to identify a narrative opportunity, there’s no way to easily understand the size of it, figure out if it’s a space competitors already are in, or determine whether it should be pursued.

Discover the most valuable narrative whitespaces with topic analysis

The new Topic Analysis feature flips the status quo on its head. With this solution, Signal AI’s proven artificial intelligence model analyzes a tremendous volume of unstructured data from news, podcasts, broadcasts, regulatory sources, and social media to understand the associations between topics and organizations. This takes the burden off of PR and comms teams to construct complex queries and enables them to quickly identify the most valuable narrative whitespaces.

Topic Analysis provides a number of advanced visualizations that make it simple to understand connections and opportunities. For example, users can see which topics their business and its competitors are associated with, as well as associations with specific people.

Users can also see the topics that are uniquely associated with their company and with its competitors in order to understand which narratives they own and which they could contest.

Crucially, Topic Analysis shows how closely a topic is associated with an organization (or even a person or a place). This enables users to understand how well their current narratives are resonating and helps quantify new opportunities.

Another key element is sentiment: With Topic Analysis users can see not only if a topic is associated with their company, but also if the association is positive or negative. This allows them to determine which areas need mitigation and to identify narratives that they may want to avoid altogether.

This unique combination of capabilities means it’s no longer necessary to rely solely on intuition to brainstorm ideas and understand connections. With Topic Analysis, artificial intelligence does the difficult work of identifying topics, quantifying relevance and sentiment, and analyzing the competition. Equipped with these insights—and with the extra time freed up by AI—PR and comms professionals can focus on what’s most likely to move the needle for their business.

Move the dots with human-curated reports

One way to think about Topic Analysis is that it shows PR and comms teams exactly where the “dots” are: AI identifies relevant topics and these are then presented in clear visuals. 

Of course, next comes the work of moving the dots. Signal AI’s premium curated reports can help with this step: An analyst will look at the whitespaces mapped by AI and show what to say and do to capitalize on the opportunities. With this combination of AI and human intelligence, PR and comms professionals can craft narratives that grab more attention, shift sentiment, and stake out fresh territories. 

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