The long and the short of it is this. If you are satisfied with you negatives then a general reading will suffice. When you see a need for more control, then that is when you need to dive on in.
Most times, when I was using my Master IV, I would pick the brightest portion of the scene (usually sky or a major glare like white stone) and mark down the top end. Then I would meter the darkest shadows and note the lower end. You either need to get close to these parts of the subject or pick a suitable replacement at hand AND under like lighting conditions.
This will give you your luminance range between highlight and shadow. Then, ascertain values/readings for important parts of the subject to see where they fall and place your exposure to match the desired end result.
It's much more involved. But that's the long and short of it all.