Truth about Social Media Research by Mallios and Smithee, Spych #MRA_National #MRX

… Live blogging from Disney Orlando, any errors are my own…

The Truth About Social Media Research… Peeking Behind the Curtain

Katy Mallios, Research Consultant; SPYCHBen Smithee, CEO, SPYCH


  • People are willing to put their deeply personal life on social media, because they want to not because they’re being paid for it
  • Social listening is the foundation of social research, it’s more observing than listening, focus on vanity metrics such as likes, followers, sentiment
  • Old style was just a whole lot of people screaming, seemed like we couldn’t hear for all the noise
  • We wonder if we can really learn anything, if they’re real people,what are they supposed to do with the data, is it just a fad
  • How did we use the data? comment pathways, manually review blog data, basic facebook searches and all this just leads to basic monitoring, high level awareness, ideas to build better discussion guides
  • Most people are in the general listening stage right now
  • We need knowledge and understanding, not just awareness, we need context not just content, we now have more advanced and embedded metrics that help us build better stories; this is where the dollar value is
  • But the data isn’t representative!!!!  Well, it’s representative of certain things. Is it qual or quant?
  • What defines value to a client?
  • Sentiment is a revolving door longitudinal measure, there is still human input needed. Humans are required to do it right
  • The numbers don’t matter, comparisons matter
  • Brand health is measured on every project. Aggregated brand metrics matter, industry specific measures as well
  • New layer of life insights – understand product integration, at what stage and for how long, when does it exit the consumer’s life
  • People talk about commercials and will share them on their facebook, twitter pages, and hit the like buttons on YouTube and elsewhere
A selfie I took last week in vancouver - but no brands in the background. "This responder likes the outdoors"

A selfie I took last week in vancouver – but no brands in the background. “This responder likes the outdoors”

  • What is social intelligence? Cross platform measurement, not just number of tweets and likes.  It’s actionability.
  • How does social tie in with CRM and sales data. Dirty fixes are required to get to this level of actionability. see how tweets compare to purchase behaviour. Why don’t people “check-in” every time they visit our establishment?
  •  In the future, major clients will drive changes in technology so that all software systems talk together, listening and CRM and sales all in one
  • Automated actionability – based on XYZ in automated sentiment, we will create marketing strategy A or B
  • Human actionability – someone still needs to interpret everything, do the gut check, make the big decisions
  • Get past the “flash” and go back to basics, he who asks the best questions wins, the brands that do this best are winning
  • What other life aspects can we tap into that will help increase our own loyalty – e.g., send them coupons based on what is in the background of their selfie
  • Move from competitor comparison to competitors identification, where are the next two moms who got upset with my brand
  • What dynamic content can we put into place based on our sentiment and lagging sentiment
  • How can we incorporate current content into our next media launch, in a measureable way?  Ask questions on their facebook page, on their blogging page.
  • The Ripple Effect – length of time for an action to have a digital impact, e.g., time between campaign launch and consumers chatting about it, optimize positive, minimize negative, measure duration
  • This data informs marketing and other groups within the brand organization
  • MOM metrics – missed opportunity metrics – these are opportunities for positive re-engagement, opportunities for brand expansion, opportunities for negative conversions
  • Optimize your key words, most important things [in other words, don’t name your brand something like gap, target, apple]
  • Be careful to separate data out by type – sponsorships, paid bloggers, contests, you can look at each part as need be
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