social business

Social Listening 2019

SUMMARY OF SOCIAL LISTENING – 2019:

Social listening gives us clues related to our customer, our competitor and our marketplace based on conversation analysis at scale. These clues lead to insights that inform laser specific strategy for ALL silos in the enterprise. In addition, we can build a customer base from conversation analysis by enriching handles of those in the conversation. In addition, we can see who is influencing people talking about our chosen themes/topics.

Sentiment analysis and Emotions analysis gives us insight into what causes Joy, Anticipation, Fear, Disgust, Anger within conversations where our chosen themes and topics are being discussed. This is important because we can design better marketing campaigns, bring efficiency to our overall budget based on what’s working/not working in the marketplace, we can spot trends in the marketplace and anticipate where to focus our resources as a brand.

When we see WHO is talking about themes/topics important to our brand, WHERE these conversations are occurring, WHAT is driving awareness of our themes/topics, HOW customers are arriving to our channels AND to our competitors channels, then we make more intelligent decisions for our brand, for each silo in our enterprise.

Social listening is a process by which insights are derived from truly massive quantities of social data (online conversations, documents, and profiles). We distill these huge amounts of data into digestible insights for business stakeholders, accompanied by detailed datasets of prospects, and individuals/entities who influence these prospects. Software solutions combined with human analysts are our chief means for achieving this work

Our net deliverables are PDFs, spreadsheets and in-person meetings where we deliver insights & recommendations related to our research. These deliverables are important because brand leadership has a set of insights/action steps related to discovered individuals (our initial data lake of prospects). We also meet with stakeholders in various business units to discuss the findings, participate in action teams who are executing on initiatives supported by the insights, adjust process and rinse-repeat as needed, honing in on specific additional items desired. This refinement process is where we really drill into the “2nd concentric ring”* and find the exact targets worth acquiring. This is also where we find out what’s working and what’s not working for a specific unit/team.

*The “2nd concentric ring” is everyone who is following a specific influencer. Segmenting and defining the demographics/psychographics/personalities of every single person following an influencer gives us a better idea about whether this influencer is a good pick for our organization. We also find out a lot more about our ideal consumer when studying the “2nd concentric ring”. This is important because when we see every single person who has chosen to follow and engage with an influencer, we gain insight into the culture, buying choices, and online habits of our ideal consumer.

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THE NITTY GRITTY PROCESS 2019 (STEP BY STEP):

1. Define the questions/problem to be answered. This is done by sitting down with the client and interviewing leadership, then specific stakeholders, then those who work with specific stakeholders. It is best to do this in small groups or with individuals so as to get honest and truthful information. This is important because we want to start our study with a very deep set of insights on the organization and those who will be using our research. When I interview stakeholders and their teams on an individuals basis, I learn more than when I interview a group together. When I interview a group together, all of the politics and internal issues prevent individuals from sharing fully what is needed.

2. Define the scope/parameters – dates/topics/desired outcomes. After interviewing everyone, I have insight into how the organization will be most helped by the research work. Very few internal stakeholders and employees in the enterprise have the “big picture” view. Usually each person is interested in his/her own agenda or in pleasing specific senior stakeholders. When we know what is at the heart of the organization’s psyche, it’s heartbeat as it were, then we can deliver a scope of work that truly meets the brand’s need vs. individual stakeholders’ needs. This is important because we want our work to feed the brand, to nourish it’s life. A brand can breathe when fed useful insights, and it can die if it is shielded from useful insights. Truth about the marketplace, the consumer, the competitor, and, importantly, the inner body of stakeholders, employees, vendors, contractors and non-human drivers is vital.

3. Define the audience for the report(s) – who is this for/what is purpose of study/why are we doing this study. Each insights report we deliver will nourish a specific person, unit, division, region. When we know the true need, as stated in the last point, we can speak to the audience who has this need…we can speak to the heart of the organization itself. Knowing one’s audience affects one’s voice, one’s tone, one’s approach. This is important because we want our insights to be digestible, used, passed around. We want our research to truly affect change in the organization, change for the good of the brand.

4. Gather existing pre-study materials from the client and study these. Ask client questions about submitted materials. Gather more materials if needed/available.

5. Create boolean queries for conversation data aggregation in a conversation analysis tool.

6. Refine these boolean queries for more precise conversation data aggregation.

7. Download the raw mentions from the conversation analysis tool.

8. Download other relevant sheets from the conversation analysis tool, including Topics, Most Mentioned Authors, Most Used Hashtags, Leading Authors (in terms of Inf), Leading Sites (blog), Leading Sites (forum), Leading Twitter Authors, Leading Blog Authors, Leading Forum Authors, targeted Mentions downloads (using Rules and sub-queries within the search field in the Mentions tab.

9. Organize conversation data downloads, cleaning up columns, deleting un-needed columns/rows, filtering for site type and putting into separate sheets/tabs in Excel.

10. Enriching the Twitter handles/Instagram handles with additional info about those authors using audience intelligence solutions.

11. If needed, further enriching these titles with add’l social handles using APIs that give us PII (phone, email, address, etc.).

12. Analysis of conversation snippets for insights (junior analysts do this, filling in coding columns and insights columns).

13. Analysis of leading sites.

14. Analysis of leading authors.

15. Upload specific sets of conversation snippets into a tool using the LDA algorithm (Latent Dirichlet Algorithm) for Topic Modeling and Emotions Analysis.

16. Look over analysts’ hand coding work and develop macro insights based upon this work.

17. Look over emotions analysis and topic modeling for add’l insights.

18. Look over the types of people talking (from audience intelligence tools) and add add’l insights.

19. Conduct in-person focus groups, where needed/if required by client (using ideal candidates found from the conversation/audience data analysis).

20. Create final reports with insights, recommendations, appendix and, where needed, the working Excel sheets. Add charts and graphs to Appendix of report.

21. Deliver Insights report to client.

22. Deliver an Excel sheet of the enriched author handles, along with addl charts containing psychographic insights, influencer insights, related to these authors.

23. Deliver Excel sheets from audience intelligence dashboards (includes offline insights from sources like Acxiom and Experian).

24. Go over recommendations one by one with the client.

25. Ask client if there are add’l questions they have. Identify opportunities to collaborate on future research together.

The Advent of Machine Learning as related to Social Listening

The advent of #MachineLearning as related to social listening precipitates a lot of honest-to-God hard work during a transition from human-led to machine-led insights. This will happen because many humans will be needed to create custom attributes and custom classifiers for the machine to use in the new upcoming #AI driven insights industry. Humans teaching the machine to think like we do, to analyze like we do, to understand nuance, culture and the evolution of language (keep in mind, social tech experts, I am referring to a truly global machine analyzing the languages of the world…not just English).

Since there are many gaps in social data, we face an uphill in pairing other data sources to the snippets we get from public sources of conversations. The key to a complete “AI Social Data Intelligence Machine” will be sources such as Axciom, census data, background check sources, private networks like Doximity/A Small World and finally, if possible, the nexus of data from Facebook and Amazon. This particular nexus is a kind of holy grail that the leading machine intelligence experts will eventually open to brand leadership. But previous to such events, we have a grueling journey as analysts, insights researchers and programmers to “teach the machine how to be a human”.

One of the most exciting branches of this “teaching” will be a self-aware machine, an artificial mind that will begin to offer recommendations…and then may decide to act upon these recommendations.

Relationship and Experience Marketing Plan

SUMMARY: The central themes of this document are relationship and experience. It is the express opinion of the author that SEO and advertising are broken models in need of transformation. The way to create awareness in today’s world is through relationships and experiences. Enterprises should consider focusing solely on creating the right relationships and creating experiences in the context of these relationships.

HOW TO DO THIS: The sequence of steps related to this method of going to market are as follows. Note that this is a summary document related to a master document filled with actual personas, suggested content and suggested experiences.

1. Identify the ideal willing prospect as related to your brand. This means that you write out on paper who this person is. Ideally, these people are micro-influencers, with regional popularity and super-engaged networks. Action: write out and refine over time this profile. As your community grows, you will notice the various strata of your desired types, from beginner to elite. Be inclusive to this spectrum and become THE experts in how one traverses from beginner to expert.

2. Use social network analysis tools, such as Brandwatch, PeoplePattern, Musefind and Audiense to aggregate large groups of these prospects. Understand more about these prospects using psychological technologies similar to CrystalKnows and Watson (IBM). Such solutions will give you lists of people (along with detailed bio info) exactly similar to your ideal willing prospect. You will also discover the content these people are posting, the events they are attending and the experiences they are having. Absorb this on a daily basis. The value of this intelligence is that you will have inspiration for content, for events to attend, and for experiences to participate in (and feature). Your community is found using these tools.

3. Employ humans (flesh and blood) to reach out to these prospects and meet with them in person. Invest your dollars in outgoing, intelligent flesh, who love connecting online and offline. Ideally, these humans you pay are also your ideal types themselves. Again, invest your dollars in charismatic, intelligent humans vs. outdated SEO and advertising approaches. The former is a love affair and gains you access to real dynamic community. The latter is a shotgun shot into the dark and is temporary, requiring increased investment for less reliable results.

4. Plan on a 12 month program (at minimum) of getting to know the community you found using the network analysis tools.

5. Plan on investing in content that follows the Content Grid approach from Jess3 and Eloqua. https://thesocializers.com/the-content-grid/

6. Create content pieces for every stage along the consumer journey described in the Content Grid. Invest in research where you discover the best contexts for placing and socializing this content. Increasingly involve your community in creating this content with you, through their stories, quotes and experiences. https://thesocializers.com/the-content-grid/

7. Plan on running campaigns that award specific, meaningful items from strategic partners, such as plane tickets for two to anywhere, to members of your community. Show your growing community that you understand them through what you award them. Be a giving brand. Plan on becoming known as THE place to make one’s adventure happen.Through your brand, consumers realized their adventure.

Corporate Social Analysis and Action – Part 1

1. Discover entire work force in the social networks (use Connect6 and LinkedIn Recruiter).

2. Segment the discovered individuals into various categories of strength by analyzing each individual’s likes/interests/personal content (use Brandwatch, Facebook Graph Search and SocialBro).

3. Encourage all employees to enter and beef up LinkedIn profiles and join company specific groups.

4. Analyze Yammer and Chatter and Sharepoint data for untapped solutions to lagging initiatives, do the same with all corporate email exchanges.

5. Fund internal social TV (model this after internal corporate news providers).

6. Direct specific employees to join online industry/interest groups associated with their job title/department/silo/region (discover these using the native search within specific networks).

7. Encourage complete connection of employees to one another in LinkedIn to the 100th percentile.

8. Fund all employees to have Executive level accounts and undergo LinkedIn training.

Enterprise level planning and campaign execution

Earlier this morning, I tweeted a series of actions a large enterprise could weave together for superior planning and campaign execution. The following sequence is an expansion of those tweets into a powerful method for market research and execution of digital campaigns/building of social communities online:

1. Achieve superior market intel by pairing newly minted predictive data solution at @Fliptop with the truly massive product index at @Indix

Fliptop is providing predictive lead scoring using internal and external data. Connects with CRM and Marketing Automation to deliver immediate impact to increase revenue. Indix is offering software for product aware apps, product intelligence, price intelligence, competitive intelligence. Indix has produced what they claim is THE ultimate map of all products on the planet. When one pairs scored leads relative to specific products, one has assembled pools of ideal customers. Pairing Fliptop with Indix is a method for assembling pools of ideal customers for products.

2. Continue the project mentioned in last tweet using @Fliptop & @Indix by appending deep social media resources via @FullContactAPI.

Full Contact offers a mechanism for appending social data to emails in the context of a spreadsheet. When an organization takes the “pools of ideal customers” from the previous step and then appends social data to each customer in its CRM, the result is a way into the deep conversations occurring around specific products. An analyst can also extract other meaningful connections through studying what specific pools of customers are talking about and what trends are developing in those pools. More on how to find those trends in the next step.

3. Bring further depth to aforementioned @Fliptop @Indix @FullContactAPI project by processing entities thru @RecordedFuture temporal analytics.

Recorded Future scans hundreds of thousands of quality public web sources, including news publications, high-caliber blogs, social media platforms, financial databases, government websites, and much more. From these open sources, RF identifies text references to entities and events. Then RF detects time periods: when the events are predicted or reported to occur. Each reference links back to the original source. RF can explore the past, present, and predicted future of almost anything in a matter of seconds. RF’s analysis tools facilitate deep investigation to better understand complex relationships, resulting in actionable insights.

When an analyst takes entities from the previous step in this process and performs analysis on these entities, he has the opportunity to find specific times in the future when a product might be better received. In addition, there may be an opportunity through using the specificity of Recorded Future to literally change a future event simply through when a product is launched. RF offers an analyst myriad signals from web intelligence that can inform a smarter strategic positioning for product launch, product recall and customer acquisition. By knowing what is happening with prospects and competitors through the RF panel, a product dev team can more accurately create a unique selling proposition in the marketplace.

Watch this video for more on how Recorded Future uses web intelligence to produce foresight in markets: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a62XTMufWQI

4. After using @RecordedFuture (step 3 in this tweeted process), apply @Brandwatch to extract meaningful mentions from resulting data set

Brandwatch is offering a superior listening & data visualization solution that will bring precise conversation analysis into this process. In addition, one may assemble a scale of influence relative to a product, market segment and/or pool of customers. Finally, Brandwatch has just launched a powerful data visualization format called Vizia that is helpful for C-Suite decision makers to quickly digest complex analysis on a real-time basis. The solution rivals previous set-ups by rivals and will inform the next generation of social media control centers globally. See this sample of Brandwatch Vizia in action: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wvx_yNn_McQ

5. As the penultimate step to ultimate customer intel, deposit nice neat sheet from previous 4 steps into @SpotRight machine for laser insights.

We can further refine insights derived through the Brandwatch methodology by placing data into the Spotright.com process, where truly massive amounts of customer intelligence have already been segmented, tagged and defined. No entity on the planet has assembled such an expansive and deep set of intelligence on individuals as Spotright.com. The principals at Spotright bring a rich diversity of backgrounds and have assembled the ultimate catalog of individuals who buy products. A team choosing to use Spotright at this stage will find verification of previous findings AND, importantly, matches to its internal CRM of customers. Spotright is how to find customers just like your existing regulars.

6. For awareness-bulding actions based upon previously tweeted research sequence, execute campaigns using @JiveSoftware for maximum reach.

To bring an enterprise portfolio of products to market, use Jive Software. Now that the full market research has been completed in the previous 5 steps, it is time to take action. A powerful solution for taking action is Jive, which blends internal facing and external facing capabilities, making team-work across the silos far more efficient. In addition, Jive offers a suite of solutions for building awareness on a massive scale in the social fabric of the Internet. Watch this video for more understanding of how this works on the inside of a large FMCG group: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ISa0VBkyOM

To run this six step process is a means to unlocking powerful potential in online communities for community engagement and sales growth.