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Selecting Social media monitoring tools

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A guide to provide you with selection criteria for social media monitoring tools.

A guide to provide you with selection criteria for social media monitoring tools.

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  • Please also consider including SocialMotus. We're a new, free social management tool platform for businesses and individuals. We’re building some innovative and powerful conversion tracking and social management features including priority messages inbox, targeted Twitter followers discovery, sales conversions by posts and much more.

    You can review it by signing up for free here http://www.socialmotus.com or emailing me for more information.
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  • 1. SelectingSocial Media Monitoring Tools For your Business Prepared By: Purple Spinnaker www.purplespinnaker.com @purplespinnaker
  • 2. Selecting Social Media Monitoring Tools Table of Contents Introduction ...................................................................................................................................... 3 Uses of Social Media Monitoring Tools .............................................................................................. 4 Core Components of SMM Tools........................................................................................................ 5 When to use different tools? ............................................................................................................. 7 Monitoring Online Conversations with “real time” tools ................................................................ 7 SMM with historical social data warehouses .................................................................................. 8 Analysis of historical social data to deliver consumer insight .............................................................. 9 Social Data Warehouses – Core elements ........................................................................................ 10 Volume of data ............................................................................................................................ 10 Sources of Data ............................................................................................................................ 10 Aggregated Content providers ................................................................................................. 10 Content Fire hoses from Twitter, Facebook and other social media networks .......................... 10 Manual addition of domains and url’s ...................................................................................... 10 Conversation Data Attributes ....................................................................................................... 11 Bespoke Searches ........................................................................................................................ 11 Commercial Models ......................................................................................................................... 12 Cost per search/keyword/phrase ................................................................................................. 12 Number of results ........................................................................................................................ 12Call us on: +44 (0) 7887 644 799 2 London BasedEmail us at: julie@purplespinnaker.com Work Worldwide ©Copyright Purple Spinnaker Ltd. 2011
  • 3. Selecting Social Media Monitoring Tools Introduction Social Media Monitoring is a new and evolving discipline which is gaining momentum due to the increasing use of social media channels by individuals, companies and brands. Social media channels are split into 2 primary groups, public social media channels and private channels. It is the public channels which are tracked and monitored by social media monitoring tools and it is the public data from these sites, which are stored by some tools in an historical social data warehouse. The data in a social data warehouse can vary from 1 week to 3.5 years. The social media monitoring tools track and monitor public content from a range of online medium and content types which include: • Mainstream news and content websites • Blogs • Micro-blogs • Public Online Forums • Public Social Networks (Facebook, LinkedIn, Youtube, Flickr etc) There are a range of social media monitoring tools in the market, and this report will provide a high level overview of some of the most popular tools, their key features, typical uses of these tools today and pricing models.Call us on: +44 (0) 7887 644 799 3 London BasedEmail us at: julie@purplespinnaker.com Work Worldwide ©Copyright Purple Spinnaker Ltd. 2011
  • 4. Selecting Social Media Monitoring Tools Uses of Social Media Monitoring Tools Today, Social Media Monitoring Tools are being used by organisations in 4 ways: • Monitoring Online Conversations on a real time basis • Monitoring online conversations over a period of time • Track and highlight changes in key areas of conversation • Analyse historical data in social data warehouse and investigate findings The majority of organisations using SMM tools are using them to track and monitoring conversations in a real time or to track key conversations around a company, brand or product over a period of time. The outputs from the monitoring projects are: • Online Dashboard of results • Standard Report • Advanced Report • Email alert to internal team within a company • Alert/update to external CRM system • Results data extract to CSV, HTL, and XML etc. • API feed to external bespoke dashboard In addition to these outputs, there is a potential to interrogate and analysis conversations within historical social data warehouses to provide deeper insight on consumer conversations and behaviour.Call us on: +44 (0) 7887 644 799 4 London BasedEmail us at: julie@purplespinnaker.com Work Worldwide ©Copyright Purple Spinnaker Ltd. 2011
  • 5. Selecting Social Media Monitoring Tools Core Components of SMM Tools Tool Search Type Tools fall into 2 search categories • Real time search o Tools do an online instance crawl of current social conversations o The results either come from current conversations online or up to the last week, month or quarter and combine a rolling data warehouse with current real-time data • Searching proprietary social data warehouse o Tools search their proprietary data warehouse o Data is updated at regular intervals (hourly, every n hours, daily etc) – this impacts how current the data is and means not all data is “real time” Search Setup Each tool has 4 primary functions: • User access (ie number of users who are licenced to use the tool) • Search Setup (number of search profiles which can be setup ie 1 per project) • Keywords and phrases (number within each search profile) • Results(volume of results delivered) Depending on the licence model ie search, keyword or volume of results - will depend on how the searches are setup to maximise the value of the results. Dashboard Dashboards are a summary of results from the searches which are setup. Some tools have configurable dashboards and each company has their own definition of “configurable” Search Results Tools The search results tend to cover the key questions: • Daily volume of conversations/mentions • Share of voice across different social channels o blogs, forums, public social media networks, MicroBlogs, News & other websites • Theme clouds depicting prominent key words in conversations/mentions • Demographics of Authors • Top Domains/URL’s • Top Authors • Author Tags • Top Languages (mostly English as most vendors have a great number of English sources) • Top Countries (mostly US if global search as most sources are us - searches excluding US can show other results) • Sentiment (+ve neutral and –ve sentiment in conversations) o Some tools allow words & phrases to be configured to positive, negative or neutral ie make “sick” positive in conversations around youth topics or “oil” neutral” in searches about BP so that results are not skewed o Each tool has a different way to handle sentiment Generally most tools have similar result outputs. Workflow Workflow is a mechanism to assign a conversation/mention which may be an issue or information about a product or service or maybe a reaction to some PR or some other announcement or action taken by a company – to an individual or team for review and action where required.Call us on: +44 (0) 7887 644 799 5 London BasedEmail us at: julie@purplespinnaker.com Work Worldwide ©Copyright Purple Spinnaker Ltd. 2011
  • 6. Selecting Social Media Monitoring Tools Social Data Warehouse Each tool collects, stores and reports on the social data they find. This data comes from a range of sources • Blogs • Forums/boards • Microblogs • Wiki • Video/photo sharing • Social networks • Mainstream media • Classified sites • Social bookmarking • Review Sites • Add custom sources • Customer feedback (email, survey) • Customer data feeds • Data collection frequency The frequency of collection and updating of the social data warehouse varies between vendors. The volume and scope of social data varies in the quantity and how new sources are added. The volume of data is growing with each vendor each day and they add new sources in 2 ways, one through internal developers and secondly on an ad hoc basis when customers add new urls/domains when setting up searches. Historical Data Store The data warehouses hold historical data which can be 1 month to 3 months to 6 months to 4/5 years. The majority of social data today is for English language sources, so the largest proposition of data available is in English. Not all markets have a good enough volume of relevant data for valuable searches to be performed. Sentiment Dictionaries Sentiment dictionaries &/or algorithms are used and when looking at non-english languages the quality of the results may vary. Data Upload process Data is uploaded by the vendors on a regular basis; this can be immediate to 4 days depending on the tool, the batch upload process and the volume of results being uploaded. This may impact the tools use for particular uses. Integration to external CRM A number of the tools have integration to industry standard CRM tools ie Salesforce & Omniture etc API Toolkit The majority of the tools have an API toolkit to extract results and import to customisable dashboards and tools. ** The enclosed spread sheet provides an overview of the leading SMM tools.**Call us on: +44 (0) 7887 644 799 6 London BasedEmail us at: julie@purplespinnaker.com Work Worldwide ©Copyright Purple Spinnaker Ltd. 2011
  • 7. Selecting Social Media Monitoring Tools When to use different tools? SMM Tools fall into 2 primary categories • Real time • Historical Data Depending on the reason for using the tool, will depict which tool works best for each project. These projects may include: Monitoring Online Conversations with “real time” tools Real time monitoring tools may be used by the following teams: Brand Journalists These teams may be listening to real time activity online around a brands products and services and be ready to respond and react to conversation and other online activity – sharing of content, videos etc as well as participation in user generated conversations. PR and Analyst Relations To monitor current online conversations about the company, company announcements, executives, products, services, reputation. These teams may be the front line listening and around specific words and phrases and respond either externally or forward with or without recommendations for action to other internal teams. Customer Service To monitor online conversations around particular products or services and look out for an issue arising online, this may be a reaction to something the company does launch of a product, issue with a service and the response or lack of response by a company. Conversation Monitoring/Listening Teams These teams may be on the lookout for changes in key measures identified by a business; this may be the frontline team for the teams above as well as on the lookout for real time changes in tone and volume of conversations around: • Brand • Products • Services • Competitors • Campaign Messaging • Response or lack of to online consumer conversations There may be other teams and subject who will benefit from using “real time” social media monitoring tools, which have not been included in the list above.Call us on: +44 (0) 7887 644 799 7 London BasedEmail us at: julie@purplespinnaker.com Work Worldwide ©Copyright Purple Spinnaker Ltd. 2011
  • 8. Selecting Social Media Monitoring Tools SMM with historical social data warehouses Many organisations use the Forrester list of Social Media Monitoring Reports in the table below as a starting point for: • Monitoring online conversations over a period of time • Track and highlight changes in key areas of conversation The reports can be categorised for different departments and the output formats, listed below, will vary based on the requirements of the team using the reports and some tools will provide better reporting mechanisms • Online Dashboard of results • Standard Report • Advanced Report • Email alert to internal team within a company • Alert/update to external CRM system • Results data extract to CSV, HTL, and XML etc. • API feed to external bespoke dashboard In addition to these report based outputs, there is a potential to interrogate and analysis conversations within historical social data warehouses to provide deeper insight on consumer conversations and behaviour.Call us on: +44 (0) 7887 644 799 8 London BasedEmail us at: julie@purplespinnaker.com Work Worldwide ©Copyright Purple Spinnaker Ltd. 2011
  • 9. Selecting Social Media Monitoring Tools Analysis of historical social data to deliver consumer insight Social Data can be used to obtain actionable consumer insights. This is only possible with social media monitoring tools with an historical social data warehouse and the ability to create searches across 2 or more date ranges which can be used for comparison purposes. The insight can be used by teams to: • Understand the perception/tone of conversations/key messages/themes as perceived by the people talking about a website, company, brand, product or service over a period of time ie in the last 3, 6 or 12 months. • Compare the perception/tone of conversations/key messages/themes about a website, company, brand, product or service over 2 time periods ie q3 in 2009 and q3 in 2010 • Compare the perception/tone of conversations/key messages/themes based on seasonal changes in consumer buying cycles i.e. Easter/Christmas/School Holidays in 2009 with Easter/Christmas/School Holidays in 2010 Or it may be used to track conversations around a particular subject or group of subjects by a specific consumer segment: • Identify key word or phrase • Identify target segment within the conversations • Analyse this groups conversation around this subject • Follow their conversations across multiple social channels • Develop a consumer map of their conversations • Feed into campaign messaging, content strategy for web sites etc. There are a number of other applications for using social tools to provide supplementary data to traditional insight methodologies and data sets as well as use alongside new online consumer behaviour methodologies like virtual ethnography and online semiotics.Call us on: +44 (0) 7887 644 799 9 London BasedEmail us at: julie@purplespinnaker.com Work Worldwide ©Copyright Purple Spinnaker Ltd. 2011
  • 10. Selecting Social Media Monitoring Tools Social Data Warehouses – Core elements Social Data Warehouses have data which comes from a range made up of a number of core components. Each tool has their own method of collecting and storing the social conversations. The volume and quality of data differs between each tool as does the additional identifying data collected and stored. Key areas to look out for are: Volume of data The majority of tools vendors have come out of the US/Canada and as such the largest proposition of their data is in English. There are a number of vendors who collect conversations in multiple languages; the volumes in these other languages vary as do the types of content that is being collected. Sources of Data The data sources vary between vendors and it is unlikely that 2 vendors will have the same social data warehouse, which means comparing results between different vendors would be difficult. Each vendor will combine data sources from the channels below: Aggregated Content providers SMM vendors purchase/licence data sets from content aggregators and these are typical news and subject based website content sources from leading online publishers in each country. The range of aggregated content differs between each tool as not all tools licence the same content volume or mix of sources which means that one tool may have more of one type of content than another tools vendor. Tool vendors do not disclose which aggregated sources they use. Content Fire hoses from Twitter, Facebook and other social media networks The content from the social media networks is hard to collect as not all of it is held on publicly available pages or the url’s are not easy to identify or the conversations are behind member logins. The social media networks sell access to their fire hose of social data and this service is purchased by some of the tools vendors to improve the volume of social network conversations. Many of the tools also provide the ability to manually add in individual domain/urls to be included in the crawling process. Manual addition of domains and url’s Many of the tools provide users with the ability to add in domains or urls which they want to be included in the search process – once added into the process they remain and are shared with the broader user community for the tool. The data in each social data warehouse varies due to differences in sources and volume. The majority of mainstream sources are available but there may be limited content in specific subject areas, which may impact some results.Call us on: +44 (0) 7887 644 799 10 London BasedEmail us at: julie@purplespinnaker.com Work Worldwide ©Copyright Purple Spinnaker Ltd. 2011
  • 11. Selecting Social Media Monitoring Tools Conversation Data Attributes Each conversation will have accompanying data attributes which collect and store key data which provides the additional data for us in analysing and reporting on the data. Typical attribute data may include: Not all of this data is complete as it may not be complete on the individual conversations or the aggregator may not store and forward this data. Each SMM tool vendor will have a different a different conversation attribute table and its level of completeness will be different. Bespoke Searches Some of the tools vendors offer the ability to create bespoke searches on the social data based on specific requirements for individual projects, this may be used when identifying specific consumer segments or no standard searches within the data.Call us on: +44 (0) 7887 644 799 11 London BasedEmail us at: julie@purplespinnaker.com Work Worldwide ©Copyright Purple Spinnaker Ltd. 2011
  • 12. Selecting Social Media Monitoring Tools Commercial Models The commercial models tend to have the following components: • User access (number of users who can use the tool) • Profiles (project searches) • Search Terms (keywords and/or phrases) • Results (results delivered within a profile) The pricing is based on: Cost per search/keyword/phrase This is where the licence is based on the number of search terms (words and/or phrases) input into the tool within a profile. The starting point for many tools is 1 user, 1 profile and limited search terms and then the licence goes up based on number of users, profiles and search terms. Pricing is usually a monthly fee and discounts can be achieved through and accelerator model where the more you use the cheaper things become. Number of results This is where the licence is based on the number of results delivered from the search terms input into the searches. Like the search term model, the starting point for many tools is 1 user, 1 profile and limited results and then the licence goes up based on number of users, profiles and search terms. Pricing is usually a monthly fee and discounts can be achieved through and accelerator model where the more you use the cheaper things become. The challenge with both these models is that it is hard at the lower end of the licence fee to get much value and vendors are reluctant to let customers use too much of the tool without paying for it. Access to Data With data being recognised as the jewel in the social media crown, vendors are now developing a third pricing structure based on access to data, be that a timed historical data set or a full historical data sets ie everything they have. There are variations of this model emerging: Entry level monthly fees provide 2 services Dashboard access with standard monitoring and analysis with alerts. Access to limited data sets, ie 1 month historical Full Set access Provides dashboards and api toolkits with full access to all datasets held. This may be up to 3 to 5 years of historical data. As customers become more sophisticated in their use of social media monitoring tools and social data, then the pricing models will evolve to better match uses and business value.Call us on: +44 (0) 7887 644 799 12 London BasedEmail us at: julie@purplespinnaker.com Work Worldwide ©Copyright Purple Spinnaker Ltd. 2011
  • 13. Selecting Social Media Monitoring Tools Purple Spinnaker is a social business and strategy consultancy. We have worked with a range of clients from Blue Chips including, Alterian, Ogilvy, HSBC, Lloyds Banking Group and Lexis Nexis, in the Social Media Monitoring, Advertising, Retail Banking, Legal and Publishing markets, as well as a range of SME’s in health, fitness, veterinary, charity and translation services. To find out how we can help you develop and implement your social business strategy, please contact us: Email: julie@purplespinnaker.com Mobile: +44 7887 644 799Call us on: +44 (0) 7887 644 799 13 London BasedEmail us at: julie@purplespinnaker.com Work Worldwide ©Copyright Purple Spinnaker Ltd. 2011