Archive for the ‘Buzz tracking’ Category.

Social media influencers 2010 – download the final report

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Following on from the success of our social media monitoring tools review earlier this year, we’ve been testing  nine of the leading social media monitoring tools in order to assess how effective they are at identifying influencers.

We’ve tested Attensity 360, Brandwatch, Radian6, Alterian, Scoutlabs, Sysomos, Synthesio, PeerIndex and Social Radar using the subject  of  “organic baby food” as the test topic for our report.

We felt it would be interesting to see how well each of the tools could help identify influencers for this much-discussed topic. Will the tools pick out key “mummy bloggers” and frequently visited forum posts in parenting sites such as Mumsnet and BabyCentre?

Download our social media influencers report 2010 to find out

We’d like to thank all the tool providers for enabling us to carry out this report. We’d also like to  give a special mention the following people for their comments and opinions about influencers, which have been included in the report: Chris Brogan, Jay Baer, Murray Newlands, Louise Parker and Kelly Pennock.

5 things to consider when engaging social media influencers online

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Image courtesy of Jack Monson

With the launch of our social media influencers report this Friday 3rd December, we thought it would be useful to think more about how to engage with influencers online.

Our report road tests how well nine of the leading social media monitoring tools - Attensity 360, Brandwatch, Radian6, Alterian, Scoutlabs, Sysomos, Synthesio, PeerIndex and Social Radar - can identify  social media influencers. But once you have identified your influencers, how do you go about engaging them online?

Here a few things we feel that all brands and businesses should consider before engaging with their influencers:

1. Get to know your influencers

Before you jump in and start engaging with your influencers, be sure  listen to the conversation that is taking place on the blog, forum or social media platform where you are going to engage with them.

Read through previous discussion threads, conversations or any other relevant information you can find so that you can learn more about your influencer, what they are saying and how they are saying it.

Perhaps you could even segment by type of influencer, or the value they could potentially have for your brand (eg, spreading word-of-mouth about a product launch, reviewing your product or services etc).

This will help you use the appropriate tone and content for engaging with your influencer when the time is right.

2. Learn when to engage…and when not to

There’s no need to take part in all conversations with your influencers; sometimes the topic may be relevant, sometimes it might not. Sometimes it just won’t be appropriate for you to get involved with an influencer at all.

This will call for you to use your own judgement. Perhaps think about how much value you can add to a conversation or discussion. Or, assess how would you react in an offline scenario - would you join in the conversation or not?

Finally ask “what’s in it for me?”

If you can see no value in engaging with the influencer then don’t bother. Just because they’ve been identified as a potential influencer for your business doesn’t mean you have to engage with them.

3. Build an honest relationship with your influencers

As New Media Age commented in an article about engaging with “mummy bloggers“, it is important to be “authentic, accept criticism, not patronise and ask, not tell”. This is sound advice to anyone wishing to engage with influencers.

In order to build a successful relationship with your influencers you must think of all interaction as a way of building up a relationship. You should be looking at influencers as potential partners; as people who can champion your brand. Make them feel like an insider - they have a key position in your market place as they both speak to and represent your target audience, so treat them with the respect that they deserve.

Be mindful that influencers are giving you their time and expertise so make them feel valued and acknowledge their contributions.

4. Don’t go in with the hard sell

Yes, some influencers will be aware that you have a commercial interest in them.  And while some are commercially astute, there are always other who eschew all commercial influence.

Instead of pushing your own agenda, expand conversations beyond your specific products, brand or messages. Think about the wider topic at hand and then build up a relationship with them before discussing anything too commercial.

5. Be realistic about the results you will achieve

When  engaging with influencers it is important to understand the difference between affecting and controlling perceptions. While engaging influencers will go some way to affecting the perception of your brand and products, you cannot entirely control the outcome of your efforts.

Which tool is best at finding social media influencers?

shutterstock_65038519While Social media monitoring tools are invaluable for helping with buzz tracking and for finding influencers, it’s important to take into  account the importance of human analysis.The results are not just about the quantitative metrics; it’s more nuanced than that and you need someone who can understand and interpret the data according to the needs of your business.

When choosing a tool, one of the most important things to consider is how the tool lets you sort, filter and drill down into the search results. This will help you identify influencers that fit with your overarching social media strategy.

Depending on your requirements, you may want to pick a tool that focusses in on one platform, like Twitter or Facebook. Alternatively, you may also want to look for a tool that gives you a broad understanding of influencers e.g. how active they are across different social media platforms, or their average level of engagement etc, which will really enable you to focus in on the type of influencer or influencer activity that is most suitable for your brand or business.

Our final report, released via our blog on 3rd December, will give detailed information about the ability of each tool to identify influencers, and we’ll also reveal which ones we felt performed the best across a variety of critera.

For now, here are a few of our highlights:

Brandwatch

  • Perfect for giving you an overall view of where your influencers might be located.
  • Allows you to drill down into results to find key information e.g. number of relevant posts.
  • Very well integrated platform with easy to view influencer metrics .

Alterian SM2

  • Drill down capabilities allow you to completely tailor results to focus on a particular site of influence.
  • Easy to compare data.
  • Well presented data with interactive graphs.

Attensity360

  • Integrates metrics well e.g. Klout scores.
  • Gives a broad picture about influencers and influence scores.
  • Ability to add customised “user-defined metrics” to influencer search.

Peer Index

  • Great for targeted influencer searches based on individual business objectives - results are very much tailored to your own needs.
  • The ‘results’ report gives you influencers both at an individual level and a site level.

Radian6

  • Allows you to drill down in to data in several different ways .
  • Range of ways to segment and sort data to enable you to customize the dashboard.
  • Easy to user interface to enhance user experience.

Scoutlabs

  • Gives key insights about influence at a glance, with the ability to also drill down into data.
  • Functions like “key quotes” and “frequently used words” give insight into the online conversations.
  • Simple and inviting user interface that is easy to use.

Social Radar

  • Gives a broad overview of what conversations are taking place about your topic.
  • Allows you to view the relationships between different sources of influence on the web using their infographic style “Visualizer” tool.

Synthesio

  • User can create an environment that is completely tailored to your specifications.
  • Strong multilingual performer.
  • Allows you to see influencers at both an individual and more general level.
  • Great data presentation including graphs and charts.

Sysomos

  • Unique feature include a tool that allows you to see the authority of people who are following influencers on Twitter.
  • Allows you to find both sites of influence as well as individual influencers.
  • Good segmentation of data.

Influencers report 2010: How to find online influencers

influencerAs a follow on to the success of our social media monitoring tools review earlier this year,  we’ve been carrying out detailed tests on nine of the leading social media monitoring tools in order to assess how effective they are at identifying influencers.

We’ve tested Attensity 360, Brandwatch, Radian6, Alterian, Scoutlabs, Sysomos, Synthesio, PeerIndex and Social Radar in detail, as well as looking at Visible Technologies‘ tools.

Over the next few weeks we’ll be blogging about some of the key insights from the report  including:

  • What is an influencer?
  • How to identify influencers
  • Influencer scores
  • Tool performance comparisons
  • Targeting influencers online

The full version of the report will then be released via our blog following on from an exclusive launch at our breakfast seminar on Thursday 2nd December.

You can register for the event by clicking on the button below:

Register for How to target social media influencers in London, United Kingdom  on Eventbrite

What type of brand are you online?

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There are four types of brands online, and you can distinguish between them by listening to and analysing the conversations about the brands. This is an insightful takeaway from one of the most interesting presentations at the Social Media Marketing 2010 conference in London earlier in June. The presentation from web monitoring company Synthesio presented these four types of brand, showed the nature of conversations about them online and then showed some best practice examples of how such brands can engage online.

Given that we’re a social media agency, and we’ve just published our Social Media Monitoring 2010 review , we were interested by these four types of brand. We certainly recognise some and the types and the characteristics of them. The full presentation is at the bottom of this post, but Synthesio’s four types of brands online are:

1. The Boring Brand

The boring brand does not generate spontaneous interest in it - insurance, home cleaning products and some FMCG brands can typically fall into this category. Whilst there is an average level of buzz about the brand the conversations rarely express positive or negative sentiment, presence online tends to be low and there are few long conversations about the brand.

A great example of where a typically boring brand has been turned around is Compare the Meerkat. You can also often generate interest in these brands by focusing not on the product itself but on other elements of the experience, such as the Keep Britain Biking site for Devitt Insurance.

2. The Functional Brand

Functional brands go beyond the name or image of the brand, the products they represent have to deliver a certain level of service or experience - mobile phone companies or business hotels would be typical examples. These brands have a high volume of buzz, and a relatively high proportion of these are expressing positive or negative sentiment. They also have a high presence in social media, but the conversations still tend to be more descriptive than discursive. There are typically a lot of individual comments about the brand rather than long discussions and debates online.

3. The Exciting Brand

Exciting brands are ones that people desire and that signal much about consumers who buy them. Apple would be a typical brand in this type. These brands generate a lot of buzz, although much of it is neutral in nature (people discussing the brand rather than expressing an opinion either way). The brands have high presence in social media and also tend to attract discussions between people rather than just a lot of individual comments.

The best thing for such brands to do is to find a way to nurture this enthusiasm and these conversations. The best such brands will turn these volume of conversations into positive word of mouth and value for them.

4. The Vital Brand

Vital brands are ones that concern issues you really care about, concerns and needs that are important to you. Health and environmental brands are typically in this category. They attract a lot of buzz online, although this tends not to be overly positive or negative in sentiment. There is a high presence in social media and a very high proportion of comments are discussions between people online rather than just isolated comments.

Do you recognise your brand as being one of these four? Is this a good way of segmenting brands online based on discussions about them?

How to Monitor and Measure Viral Marketing Campaigns?
View more presentations from Synthesio.