The ever-increasing amount of human interactions and data flowing through social networks has increased visibility for brands and simplified brand research. Social networks have become a podium for brands. Online ratings and review sites have gained significant prominence. Businesses can use smart networks to access ingenious ideas and funding. We spoke with Will McInnes, CMO of Brandwatch CMO, to examine how will these changes affect the future of business.
1. What’s the difference between social analytics, social listening, and social intelligence?
It’s all about depth. Social media listening is another way to say social media monitoring, and social analytics is the process of analyzing all of that data. But deep listening — diving into data beyond volume of mentions — combined with social analytics, gives you a combination for successful social intelligence. Social intelligence is the knowledge or insights gained from social media data. Ultimately, social intelligence empowers brands to make business decisions based on social media analysis and data.
Regardless of the terminology, we are seeing that the industry is definitely moving toward deep listening that informs and provides holistic social intelligence that is actionable and impacts business and campaign decisions. We’re hearing from our clients how important deep listening and analytics are, and seeing this shift happen in real time across the industry.
No matter what you call it, at Brandwatch we’re really most interested in what happens next. It’s an exciting time in our space and it’s thrilling to see our customers use our social intelligence platform for a multitude of very cool use cases.
2. What are the best ways for brands to maximize their social intelligence?
The best way to maximize social intelligence is to first start with the right tools. Sure, a one-stop shop for all your social listening, engagement, and publishing needs may seem like the ideal solution to streamline processes. But at the end of the day, the quality of data your analysts, researchers, and marketers are listening to and analyzing can have a big impact on how you use them and the results of data-driven decisions.
Brands should identify a need for deep social listening and robust analytics, and then implement that tool throughout the business, beyond just the marketing team. Many of our customers are using Brandwatch for uses other than just campaign tracking or influencer identification. Every department in a business can benefit from deep social listening – from recruitment to research, community management to product development, and much more. If you can get a solution in place that charges based on the actual data you need, rather than how you use it, then you can start to find serious value in the conversations happening online.
3. What 3 changes do you think we’ll see in the world of social intelligence over the next year?
I think the next year in social intelligence will bring several exciting things to the social landscape. If I had to pick only three futuristic trends, they would be the application of social data in more places across businesses, the increasing use of predictive analytics, and actual social media purchasing itself. Twitter has just launched its Buy button that sits within a tweet and allows people to click to buy an item directly from the Twitter post. The future is definitely happening now! And this is only the beginning.
Every day the industry is developing new features and technologies to innovate social listening and analytics, and we’ll be showing off some very exciting things in these areas over the next few months – so watch this space.
What new possibilities are there now that a business is social across the enterprise and fused with motivated external communities? To learn more, join Will McInnes at Social Media Week London, where we will explore how the ease of information will impact the future of work, and how can we best benefit from the blend of massive computing intelligence with human creativity in social networks.
Social Media Week London begins on September 22. For the full event schedule and how you can join us, visit here.