Tag Archives: social network

6 Tips Marketing Researchers Can Learn From Social Media

This post was
originally published on Lightspeed
GMI’s blog

Social media has caused a massive shift in the way people
communicate, interact and share experiences and personal interests. Consumers
are always on, always connected. Consumers build unique online relationships;
they are connected to brands, athletes, teams, family, friends and co-workers
on multiple channels. Sharing everything from political views to favorite
products, social media users are leaking valuable information and insights for
researchers to take advantage of.

Marketing researchers have adapted Mobile
First best practices
; but are we also looking to benefit from the same
openness and flexibility that social media platforms have to offer? There are
six ways to successfully engage and capture relevant and actionable
feedback from your panelists based on social media best practices:
Focus on
people, not metrics: Our
industry refers to panelists, not people. Are
we focusing on why individuals are dropping out of surveys? Are we worried
about their enjoyment of a survey or just survey completes? Create consumer
conversations, not metrics.  
to Digital Stats, 92% of consumers say they trust earned media like personal
recommendations above other forms of advertising.
 Authentic brands do
better on social media, but trust is earned over time. If you want to capture
genuine consumer insights, treat your online survey as you would a social media
account. Be honest and upfront about your intent.
don’t push:
 Want to get better research? Consider the way you are
asking questions. Similiar to social media posts, consumers favor shorter,
visually appealing surveys with a strong narrative structure.Engage
your respondents first, ask questions later.
Let the
consumer decide:
video, text or photo? Social media platforms are
constantly evolving, but they always remain focused on consumer adoption. According
to Spinklr, marketers need to find new ways to capture the attention of the
consumer who has seen just about everything
. Every day, more and more
individuals are starting surveys on their mobile devices over PCs. They are
deciding when and what device to take the survey; why not let them decide on
the format? We design for cross-device research, so why not design
Across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, you want to reach
your target audience with relevant content ‘ photos, posts and videos. Like
social media, marketing research is a crowded space; panelists are flooded with
survey invites daily. Be relevant: ask
the right questions, in the right sequence to the right audience.
first, technology second:
 Social media planning 101 = interactions
first, channel second. Allow your panelists, not technology, to drive the
future of the industry. Are marketing researchers allowing technology to
dictate the future or panelists? Are you focused on building mobile research
apps or consumer feedback apps?
Gaining success in social media isn’t easy; it’s a process,
a way of thinking. Social media can be used to create and collect customer
intelligence through listening techniques. And this can also ring true in the
online survey world. Think about it: Brands have the capacity to cultivate
conversations with consumers…but often don’t. Researchers who are successful
in gaining insights from surveys are the ones who allow the consumer to take
the wheel and drive how marketers can collect information from them. Platforms
such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest and Instagram allow users to be
creative and communicate in whatever method is enjoyable to them.  Why not
allow online panelists that same freedom? By allowing panelists to communicate
with you through mediums that are most enjoyable to them, through video for
example, you could garner more authentic and elaborate feedback. Rather than
force tedious or possibly challenging lengthy open text responses, try allowing
an option for using text or video responses. Instead of requiring respondents
to rate a product on a variety of features through a MaxDiff exercise, try
engaging them in conversation through communities or discussion boards.

The perfect solution for the survey world isn’t available in
140 characters or less, unfortunately. But the successes of social media are
ours to grow from.

How Social Has Revolutionized the Media Industry from Twitter, Facebook, CBS, NBC & More

It’s no secret, we’re all trying to figure out where, when and how people are spending their time. In a socially interconnected world, with Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube competing for attention, being a part of it requires a more empathetic understanding of your customers at a deeper level.

Join us in January at  The Media Insights & Engagement Conference and get access to industry leaders, first hand, to help you better understand your consumers social media consumption habits and how to engage with them across screens.

Twitter’s Jeffrey Graham takes the stage discussing how people use Twitter, and how companies are using the social platform to connect and engage with Twitter users.

Facebook’s Fred Leach, Head of Measurement Research, Development & Partnerships, as he shares the secrets that show how reach and frequency of different media types drive return on advertising spend, and the measurement tools and standards necessary to measure and optimize advertising return.

Cross Industry Panel on The Future of Social Media and TV Measurement
Find out if there is a correlation between social media and TV viewership and if an era of complementing measurements will be a reality.
‘             David Poltrack, Chief Research Officer, CBS Corporation (NEW PANELIST JUST ANNOUNCED!)
‘             Daniel Slotwiner, Head of Ecosystem Measurement Team, Facebook (NEW PANELIST JUST ANNOUNCED!)
‘             Dave Kaplan, VP, Bravo Ad Sales & Digital Research, NBCUniversal
‘             Andrew Somosi, CEO, SocialGuide
‘             Beth Rockwood, SVP Market Resources and Advertising Sales Research, Discovery Communications

And that’s not all. The Media Insights & Engagement Conference has a breakout track devoted to The Role of Social, Digital, Video & LinTV, with presentations from Viacom, Participant Media, HBO, HUB Entertainment Research, Time, Inc., and more, covering the use of second screens to build show and advertising engagement,  safer digital practices, cross-platform media insights and the use of mobile. Download the brochure for full details.

Scoring the Data: NFL Insights on Audience Engagement & Fan Experiences

Just last week, Twitter announced a big “big partnership with the NFL, which will bring video highlights and other content from America’s most popular sport to the social network.”

According to All Things Digital, “the pact is one of Twitter’s Amplify deals, which let TV programmers distribute short video clips, preceded by even shorter video ads, on the service. Both Twitter and the programmers are able to sell the ads, and share the revenue”.

Now, we’ve been lucky enough to chat with Alicia Z. Rankin, Director of Research and Fan Insights, National Football League, on several occasions and we would like to recap what she’s shared:

In How Fan Data is Enhancing the NFL Gameday Experience, Alicia spoke about innovating and differentiating the onsite game experience from the television experience to ensure that one doesn’t cannibalize the other. Factors like lack of wifi in stadiums and other at home comforts make it challenging to get fans to the game but the NFL is really invested in changing the experience to offer things like a referee or locker cam that fans at home don’t always have access to.

She goes into the experience and insights in the lecture below:

Last year, when we revisited Alicia, she encouraged researchers to understand the business they’re doing research for as best they can then bring actionable insights to teams that fit their customer database. View the chat entire below:


You may remember we talked to her a couple of years back about “the different segmentation challenges that take shape for the NFL and some of the things they do to address those issues.

Download Alicia’s podcast here.
Download a transcript of the podcast here.


  Valerie RussoFormerly a senior copy editor at Thomson Reuters, a research editor at AOL,  and a senior web publicist at Hachette Book Group, Valerie M. Russo is editor at large of The Front End of Innovation Blog, The Market Research Event Blog, The World Future Trends Tumblr, the Digital Impact Blog, and also blogs at Literanista.net. She is the innovation lead and senior social media strategist for the Marketing and Business Strategy Division of the Institute for International Research, an Informa LLC., and her poetry was published in Regrets Only on sale at the MOMA Gift Shop. Her background is in Anthropology and English Literature. You can reach her at vrusso@iirusa.com or @Literanista.

The State of Social TV and the Second Screen

On the slidedeck, The State of Social TV and the Second Screen shared by Shayna Blumenthal, Marketing and Social Media Consultant, she offers some insights in the current evolution of the Broadcast and Media industry:

 For example, 95% of all public chatter about TV happens on Twitter – Social can drive up to 50% of the conversation centered around sports, and speculates on what’s to come in the future.


2013: trends in news consumption

This infographic showcases the latest trends in news consumption. It’s no secret that media publishing has been declining recently, but what exactly does the new landscape look like?

Uberflip shows that Facebook is a clear front-runner when it comes to news consumption on social networks.

It also shows that Americans use tablets and smartphones in similar manners with regards to news consumption, and that young people are much more likely to discover news on social media.

How to ask for ideas from your customers. The Top 20 Customer Experience Management (CEM) Software Technologies

It’s all well and good to work on ideas and innovation by collaborating internally.  But if we want ideas from our customers we have to deliver that message, along with all the other important messages we communicate outside of the company.  Even if the message is that ‘we’re an innovative company’.  

Customer Feedback Wanted.  Here’s a fact, in case you didn’t notice’Large companies are trying to figure out how to engage with their customers.  They are asking the public what they’re thinking by using Customer Feedback Management (I wrote about that a few weeks ago here).  And they’re carefully managing how they communicate with their customers.  Customers must be reached where they dwell and they live for the most part in social networks.
Marketing automation used to be simple.  The channels were email, direct mail and phone.  Companies used these simple channels to reach out to customers (and potential customers).  You would pick the most likely prospects, and the best way to reach them and fire away.  Fingers crossed for 1 to 3% response. 
Social networks, where people tend to dwell now, and can be reached, is not just another channel.  It’s a whole new ballgame, requiring an interactive, sometimes real time, conversation between the people who work at your company and your customers.  If you’re lucky you’ll get those customers to be loyal and advocate for you.  
Why is Customer Experience Management important to the innovation inclined?  Two main reasons: 

     1.      You want to find out what your customers are thinking.

     2.     You want to periodically challenge them to provide their ideas.
There are too many social network channels, too many customers and not enough time to communicate effectively (and track the results) without good software.
Customer Experience Management is a class of software on offer from big companies like IBM and Oracle as well as a slew of smaller companies.  Remarkably it’s somewhat of a level playing field.  No company owns the market and the slew of software options are difficult to compare.  It’s not that they’re virtually equal in competencies. It is just that so many have taken different steps to get there.
Some of these come from the email space, recently adding on software to communicate via the mobile channel, then tools to push out messages via Twitter and Facebook.  Other software vendors focus initially on the social channels and add on dashboards to give the bigger picture.  Still others take novel approaches, like providing technology to track contests or setup a social network.   With this blog post I’m endeavoring to take a look at what the choices are.
A List of the Top 20 Customer Experience Management Software Offerings.  Let’s take a look at the most well known, and widely installed Customer Experience Management (CEM) software offerings that can be used to manage the messages and calls to action you put out to your customers and the public. There’s actually way more than 20 but that looked better in the headline :).   In all cases, I’m adding the company’s own description.

    1.     Empathica                  empowers employees and customers of leading brands to create places they love; turning transactions into great experiences, employees into owners and customers into advocates.

     2.     Satmetrix                   the leading provider of cloud-based customer experience software for companies worldwide.

     3.     Eloqua  (Oracle)         highly personalized and unified experience across channels 
     4.     Totango          combines big data analytics with powerful segmentation and engagement tools to allow online services to take the right actions with each customer, in realtime.

     5.     Shoutlet                      a social marketing platform.

     6.     SDL                             solutions for managing the global customer experience

     7.     Silverpop                    marketing technology provider with expertise in email marketing and marketing automation

     8.     ExactTarget                 a provider of on-demand email marketing software solutions.

     9.     Hootsuite                   social media management system for businesses and organizations to collaboratively execute campaigns across multiple social networks

     10.     Hearsay                       bolster brands across all the major social networks

     11.     Wildfire/ Google         social media marketing software

     12.  Vitrue/Oracle                social marketing solution

     13.  Involver/ Oracle            social marketing platform

     14.  Sailthru                        helping brands deliver individual experiences to millions of unique users in real time.  
     15.  Hubspot                       All-In-One Marketing Software

     16.  Lyris                             data-driven interactive marketing campaigns that facilitate superior engagement, increase conversions, and deliver measurable business value.

     17.  Thismoment                 powers dynamic brand experiences – online social marketing campaigns comprising multimedia-rich content, creative design and social conversations

     18.  Brickfish                      engagement based social media programs through contests

     19.  Dynamic Signal           provides a white-label platform for brands to run high-reach word of mouth marketing campaigns in collaboration with a trusted circle of brand advocates.

     20.  Moxie                            the most complete and intuitive social networking software for the enterprise for employee and customer engagement

     21.  Tongal a social content development platform that helps global businesses connect with global creativity

     22.  Expion                           a social software company with a centralized platform that empowers global brands, agencies, and retailers to localize and manage their social marketing efforts. 
These are more CRM systems, than Customer Experience Management, although CEM is typically a subset of the offering:
21.  Neolane                      provides the only conversational marketing technology that empowers organizations to build and sustain one-to-one lifetime dialogues
22.  IBM(via Unica or their EMM offering) enterprise marketing management software
23.  Aprimo                        delivers technology and insight that accelerates marketing productivity and the ability of marketing to document performance.
24.  Loopfuse                     a sales and marketing automation software
25.  eTrigue                          easy-to-use marketing automation, demand generation and sales acceleration Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) applications
26.  TreeHouse Interactrive  a leading SaaS provider of marketing automation and partner relationship management (PRM) software for companies that sell B2B, B2C or through partners.
27.  Act-on                         allows business users to integrate their customer relationship management efforts across a variety of popular tools in one easy-to-use interface.
Summary:  Idea Management Solutions are perfect for internal collaboration focused on innovation.  Compelling portals with easily administered security can be configured using existing internal idea management software solutions.  Specialized software exists designed to Challenge customers (and the public) to provide solicited feedback including ideas.  And these software products are perfect to communicate both brand messages and the message that your company embraces innovation.
About the Author
Ron Shulkin blogs researches and writes about enterprise technology focused on social media, innovation, voice of the customer, marketing automation and enterprise feedback management.  Ron Shulkin is Vice President of the Americas for CogniStreamer??, an innovation ecosystem.  CogniStreamer serves as a Knowledge Management System, Idea Management System and Social Network for Innovation.  You can learn more about CogniStreamer here http://bit.ly/ac3x60 .  Ron manages The Idea Management Group on LinkedIn (Join Here) . You can follow him Twitter. You can follow his blogs at this Facebook group.  You can connect with Ron on LinkedIn.

Republished by Permission from The Front End of Innovation Blog.

Using Twitter as an engagement tool

Image via CrunchBase

This has been yet another week where Twitter has featured high in many discussions – in part thanks to the triple impact of Susan Boyle‘s performance on Britain’s got Talent, the Pirate Bay decision and of course Ashton Kutcher‘s one millionth follower. At FreshNetworks we think that Twitter is a great example of how people are innovating with social media – each of these different topics is being made popular by different people using Twitter for different reasons – sharing good content, keeping up-to-date or just following celebrities. One of the main benefits that organisations can get from Twitter is to use it as an engagement tool – as part of a hub-and-spoke approach to social media and online communities. Use it to engage people and then provide them with a destination to go to or a thing to do. Today, I was presenting on this topic and how to get value from Twitter as an engagement tool and you can find the slides below.

Social media diary 13/2/2009 – Agent Provocateur

Image via Wikipedia

Agent Provocateur engages women consumers across multiple platform

Appropriately for the day before Valentine’s Day, this week saw lingerie brand, Agent Provocateur, launch a social media campaign to promote its HelloAgentProvocateur blog. As you might expect from a lingerie brand, the blog includes a range of posts from the relatively tame advice on relationships and dating, to the more provocative (appropriately enough). One recent post, for example, included a post featuring a chart of exciting and mood-killing things to say during sex. Alongside the blog post, they’ve launched a Facebook page and also a Twitter stream allowing micro blogging from MsProvocateur. The idea, according to Scott Goodson, CEO of StrawberryFrog, the agency working on the project,

…is the first time a luxury fashion brand has launched a provocative social media campaign tying together their various data-linked platforms, like a multi-entry daily blog, Twitter feed and Facebook

With a launch tied into a new ad campaign (itself designed to coincide with Valentine’s Day), this looks like a real attempt for a co-ordinated marketing approach. Using traditional and social media and then tying together online activities with a central micro blog.

So what can we learn from this?

We wrote earlier this week about the continued growth of social networks in 2008, and in particular the tremendous growth for both Facebook and Twitter. What Agent Provocateur appear to be doing is to use the different social network tools and online community platforms to engage people in different ways.

  • The blog is being used for regular posts that discuss issues of relationships, dating, and Agent Provocateur’s products in some depth. They run news and features alongside it and this really capitalises on the role that a blog can play as a content-rich information source.
  • Facebook is being used to showcase content and ideas from the blog and the campaign, and to gather friends. It capitalises upon the networking aspect of Facebook by encouraging people to connect with it. This is much softer than some of the activities that take place on the blog and reflects the difficulty that brands have marketing directly in Facebook (and other social networks).
  • The use of Twitter allows Agent Provocateur to bring together all of this activity and to broadcast what they are doing and saying on a regular basis. They can capture contacts in a way similar to in Facebook, but Twitter offers something really different. It’s not just a medium for releasing content (as is the case with the blog) nor on for accumulating friends and showcasing the best of what’s going on (as is the case with Facebook). Twitter allows them to actually engage.

It is rewarding to see that even with only 351 followers on Twitter, MsProvocateur is starting to engage and respond to people directly. When one follower tweated about the gifts their boyfriend had bought them, MsProvocateur responded with some thoughts on gifts that are good to buy in return. The real value of Twitter is both in acting as a central portal to bring together and point to all social media activity, and also a true engagement tool. In fact, when brands use Twitter, it really is a case of the more you put in the more you will get out. It is worth finding people who are talking about your brand or the topics and subjects you discuss and following them. Do respond to people, give advice and suggestions. And make this not just an overt marketing message. Really engage people and you will then reap the benefits of this activity in sales. It’s not the use of Twitter that we like of Agent Provocateur’s campaign (although it is good), nor the topical nature of the subject. Rather it is that they are using a range of social media tools to engage people in different ways. A sensible approach.From the FreshNetworks Blog
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Social media diary 5/12/2008 – Orange

Orange launches ‘Film Club’ online community

I’m a big fan of mobile operator Orange‘s involvement with film and cinemas in the UK – from their amusing adverts in cinemas (including this with Rob Lowe) to their Orange Wednesdays offer where Orange customers can take a friend to the cinema for free. To date they haven’t formally used social media to engage people around their film associations, but this week they launched The Film Club. In Facebook and Bebo, this ‘club’ is actually an application that gives users access to free preview screenings, exclusive competitions, trailers, reviews and other film related content. The Club also lets you see which of your friends are taking advantage of the Orange Wednesdays offer, and if you’re not an Orange customer you can poke your friends who are and ask them to take you. For Orange this move is all about capitalising upon their association with film and being seen as providing a place for people to share this passion with them. As Spencer McHugh, head of brand communications at Orange, says:

The new Film Club communities give movie fans on Facebook and Bebo a place to come together and chat about the things they love most.

So what can we learn from this?

At FreshNetworks we talk a lot, and have indeed posted a lot in the past, about the difference between online communities and social networks and about how building a community online is as much about building an actual community of people as it is about doing it online. What Orange have done with their Orange Film Club is to cleverly and astutely leverage social networks (in this case Facebook and Bebo) to help connect their users and act as a portal for all their film-related content and activities. But building a true community in these social networks is notoriously difficult for a brand to do. People invariably spend time in social networks for very self-centred issues – it’s a ‘me’ place where I upload my photos, plan my events, talk to my friends and join groups that reflect me. From this angle it is clearly a great place for Orange to bring together all of its members who engage with it on film – taking advantage of their offers or watching their content. This one-to-one relationship between Orange and individual fans or customers will continue. Building a real community, where it is these fans who also grow the discussions and content and where they talk to each other and form bonds might prove more difficult. A community tends to have a common purpose or something they are all contributing to, it tends to have no leaders but everybody (brand and fans alike) being equal members) and it needs careful design and guidance to make it grow and flourish (a bit like a garden can grow on its own but needs a gardener to look at its best). In Facebook (or any social networks) it’s difficult to do the latter and as a very public space people are often unwilling to start discussions and build that real community feel. So if Orange wanted to build and grow a large and flourishing film community, they may find doing it in Facebook or Bebo hard. If, on the other hand, they want to bring together all their activities and fans in this space into a convenient place then things will be much easier to do. I suspect this is what they want – making it easier for both parties to find content and engage on film. However, I hope this is the precursor to something. I hope they are planning an online community here. It could be great, and their brand could really help it to work – online and on the go.From the FreshNetworks Blog
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Social media diary 21/11/2008 – Sydney

Sydney uses MySpace to attract visitors

This week saw the launch of MySpace MySydney, a community for people who want to move to Sydney on a working visa. The page pitches itself as an online community and ‘Ben’ is your host (he’s the one on the video on the homepage). The site contains information on how to get a visa, travel information, advice on Sydney as a place to live and work and also aims to be a hub for networking with others in the same situation as you.
The site is from the Tourism New South Wales who are hoping to capitalise upon recent changes in the work and holiday visa regulations for US students. It’s now easier than it was for those from North America to get these visas and this MySpace site supports a wider marketing and social media push accompanying the change.

So what can we learn from this?

We’ve covered a lot of travel initiatives recently in the Social Media Diary – from BA’s Metrotwin, to Amex’s community for travel managers and Air France-KLM’s Bluenity. Travel is certainly an area where social networking and online communities are being used more and more to engage people. We see this at FreshNetworks, where the latest community we helped to launch this week is for a big UK travel brand. Travel has a number of great hooks for activities in social media – some people need information and have questions that other users can answer based on their experiences, it’s a subject that lends itself well to media and there is the opportunity for connecting people doing similar things in similar places. We’re seeing different travel brands trying different things – from setting up their own online communities, to interacting with people on Facebook or MySpace, providing social networking tools or just blogging.
Some of these initiatives are successful and some aren’t. What it seems that Sydney hope to achieve with this site is to present a lot of genuinely useful information in a way that is relevant to their target audience. They also hope to leverage some social networking – getting people in similar situations to get together, meet each other, share ideas and thoughts and between them build the usefulness of the site. This is an interesting proposition and I’ll be following how it pans out. Whilst I can see the clear benefit of the marketing and informational element of the site, I’ll be watching to see how (and in fact if) the social networking side of the proposition develops.
Whilst we often say that it is difficult for a brand to get a real presence in a social network, there is a real power of social networks to help people find others going through the same situation or with similar interests to them. It may be that getting people considering a move to Sydney to meet each other in MySpace might just work. We’ll wait and see.
From the FreshNetworks Blog

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