Posts by: Joe Edwards

A guide to process, tools and examples for social media listening

What I’ve leant from social media listening

Two recent reports highlight the fact the business are not taking social media listening seriously and it’s still in its infancy. A study by the Altimeter group showed that only 42% of businesses are using social media listening to learn from their customers, this was a study whose respondents’ main discipline was social media, personally I would have expected it to be higher.

The second report from Amiando (a study of event marketers) showed that only 20% of marketers are listening in social for the benefit of the business.

I know I’m a big social media advocate, but I’m shocked that businesses are not using listening not only to benefit social media activity but the overall business, I guess it’s not been ‘sold’ in to the powers that be yet.

In this article, I hope to explain how to implement social media. Where possible I will mention brands in the examples, in other places I will need to be a little more respectful of the brand’s privacy. It’s also worth noting that some of this was done purely as an experiment without the brand’s permission as part of exercise, which just goes to show how much information you can garner on other brands without the need for permission.

Drivers for examining social data.

‘Your brand is what people say about you when you’re not in the room’ Jeff Bezos, Founder of Amazon. With social they know you’re in the room and they still tend to say it.

I would argue that in focus groups or using surveys people tend to answer the questions in a way that they wish to be portrayed by their peers. While this may also be said for social (personal branding), the very nature of focus groups and surveys gives users the chance to reflect before saying anything. Social media has a cultural immediacy where users express their opinions en mass and are not prompted by questions that steer answers.

New Insights – drivers for examining social data

There are many drivers for examining social data, which can all be broadly put under ‘New insights’. Insights should be driving:

  • Targeted marketing activity: Informing messaging, demographics, personas, influencers, firmographics, segmentation and comms strategy.
  • Better planning and decision making within the business: Informing product and service development, market positioning to drive competitive advantage, growth hacking and business processes.

The customer decision process has fundamentally changed. A study by McKinsey showed that rather than systematically narrowing their choices, consumers add and subtract brands from a group under consideration during an extended evaluation phase.

By examining data we can derive maximum value from our customers by truly understanding their needs throughout the buying process and delivering to these needs, allowing our customer to get the maximum value from us. After purchase, they often enter into an open-ended relationship with the brand, sharing their experience with it online.

This article is a truncated version of the article I wrote for Smart Insights the rest can be read here

What I’ve Learnt from Social Media Listening

Presented at TFM&A 2014 – I uncover some of the techniques used to understand audiences through social media listening and measuring, how it can inform social, business and marketing strategy, hone social media activity and work to improve brand perception. As part of the presentation he’ll also look at various brands and case studies to identify real world examples.



Herding Cats part 2

Speaking at the event production show 2014A recent study showed that awareness is the key objective for event managers using social media but 80% of these individuals are not using listening tools to measure their effectiveness. In this presentation I discuss how to use Social Media to drive awareness, some key metrics for measuring it and the learnings and advantages you can gain from Social Media listening through structuring a wealth of unstructured data. I also high-light some of the new social platforms that have come to market and how best to take advantage of them.



2014 – It’s not a resolution it’s a mind set

Imagination and graft

Why does this statement hold true for me? I’m sure the data heads would disagree that knowledge is more important that imagination, my point is if you cannot imagine what to do with that knowledge, the knowledge is pointless. As for graft over talent, well I’ve seen some of the most talented people fail because they simply have not stuck at it and worked hard. You don’t need to be the most talented person in the world you just need to stick with it, focus on what you want to achieve, and make small steps to get to it. Make this a mind set, not a resolution.

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