Insights from Social Data

Submitted by on the 8th of November 2018

Are all social insights reports created equal?


Many brands still consider social listening, brand health, competitor activity and sentiment as the north star for analysis and insights from social media channels. Whilst accurate data and the concomitant cyclical insights in these areas are as meaningful as they have ever been, the rise of the analysis of user generated conversation is looming alongside relevant analysis of the honey of social channels – Insights led content.

Outbound vs Inbound posts

So, if we look at social channels and how they function, we can see that at the most basic level it’s an exchange of Outbound and Inbound posts. Outbound being the ones over which brands have complete control – via creative agencies and community managers – and Inbound, being the ones over which brands have zero control – the voice of the consumer.

Outbound posts are structured and contained within the paradigm of the brand, the business, the positioning, the campaign, and the marketing activity. We measure the impact of these posts very succinctly, sometimes even getting to the advanced stage of adding labels (or tags) in our planning process to define the objective of the content, the content pillar it is amplifying, the segment to whom we are driving awareness and consideration. Going a step further, we can also weight the engagement activities that our content stimulates. In this way we get the necessary data to clean and process to understand what type of content, what kind of language, what tonality, and what content works to achieve our various business objectives.

Sorting and cleansing

Now we get to the deluge of wildly unstructured user generated conversation or content which can assist in enhancing a brand over a steady period of time, or which can cause a riot of damage in a split second. This data is where the nuggets of business insights are buried. It takes a methodical data analytical process to cleanse the data – divvy it up into buckets of business drivers and levers; process the data into a BI tool which takes a spreadsheet of seemingly random numbers and converts them into pretty and colour toned visualizations that are easily understood; and then to apply the experience and intellect of seasoned social data analysts to draw out observations, insights, discoveries and anomalies and write it in such a way that marketing, customer insights , corporate communications, product owners, and business divisions can access the value and benefits easily.

Where does the value lie?

We must remember that most often it is the designed and planned content that brands publish that draws the user generated comments in. Often the comments from the consumers or customers are completely unrelated to the marketing content. This is fine. Brands that know that their business will grow by understanding their consumers’ universe and behavior, welcome this freely available market research data, and have established processes which allow them to use the insights and discoveries efficiently and to their benefit.

The value of structured and cleansed data from social activities is in its pubescent years, and brands that are leading currently in their sectors, and aim to keep their leadership positions, are making great strides in providing resources and tools to surface these insights to enrich and enhance the path to business success.

Cerebra offers expertise in this area through an array of Insights products of services. Talk to us to discover how Insights can add value to your business. We also offer workshops through our Cerebra Academy, to help you further expand on your know-how and skills in applying the data cleansing process and unearthing insights that will change the way you see social and the impact on your bottom line. To find out more, get in touch with us here.