By Adam Fraser
I was lucky enough to attend a recent conference run by Brandwatch in the UK – Now You Know Europe.
Brandwatch is the worlds leading social intelligence company (with whom EchoJunction partners in the Australian market) and the conference provided a fantastic update into both future developments in the Brandwatch platform as well as social intelligence trends more broadly and case studies of brands effectively using social listening,
So many insights in a jam packed 2 days, but my 5 headline take aways were:
- Social listening is maturing; in the early days it was all about tracking brand mentions (something which of course remains important) but the leading brands are now also using social listening as a form of market research to deepen understanding of customer insights and customer psychology. This could relate to the brand but also more general topics of consumer interest (eg buying a first home, drinking coffee, eating ice cream, 5G technology, Brexit etc). Some great case studies were presented around this.
- Image recognition is coming and will be an increasingly important aspect of social intelligence in the future. The entry level technology has arrived (but remains of limited value today) – the ability to bring up image recognition (eg brand logo) as well as valuable context is the challenge, and Brandwatch is planning on adding this capability to its platform in early 2017
- Social media is evolving to a more private environment (as I previously discussed) – a world of 1:1 or 1:few rather than everything being public. Clearly this represents a challenge for the industry as a whole.
- Never confuse correlation with causation – lots of sessions with big data analytics specialists dissected this topic and showed why high quality, specialised analytics capability is critical to extract maximum value from social intelligence
- Data merging – some of the best brand examples came where social data was being blended with other data – whether internal (eg sales, CRM etc) or external (e.g weather, political, economic indicators) to derive business insights of demonstrable value.
The Brandwatch blog has a much more detailed commentary around many of the presentations and I highly recommend you have a browse.