Finding the Holy Grail: Insights from social media analytics

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segInsight:  noun ˈin-ˌsīt

  1. The power or act of seeing into a situation.
  2. The act or result of apprehending the inner nature of things or of seeing intuitively.

It is a pretty lofty goal, isn’t it? Whenever performing root cause analysis on a business problem, it is the ultimate goal. Without it, you most likely will develop the wrong solution. But insight is not something that you can define before digging. Complicating the issue further is the fact that it can be derived from many sources.

In a recent webcast, Turbocharging Your Approach to Social Media Analysis, we asked the attendees a question: When performing social media analytics, what type of segmentation do you use?  Choose all that apply.  Here are the results:

Answers Percentages
Social Media Channel




Demographics: Sex, Age, etc






It is not surprising that social media channel was #1 with over 40% of the attendees using this in their analysis. When looking at sentiment, it is often the first cut. It makes great sense as a first step since there can be very different user types by social channel. In addition, even the simplest of social media monitoring tools allow for this kind of analysis.

Nor was I surprised by the fact that demographics and attitudes scored the lowest with less than one in five people using this as a pivot for their analysis. These are hard things to focus in on with even the best analytic tools. This is one of the strengths of the Visible platform. Out of the box, you have access to “Category” filters that help you filter for demographic, attitudinal and behavioral factors such as purchase process stage, first person recommendations and influential authors.

It is good to see people getting to new levels of detail in the analysis of social media data. The key is to be able to get insight at the level that is at least the same level of granularity of your target market segmentation. With all the data available and increasing competition, marketers must get more specific with their targeting. Ask someone at Dr. Pepper/Snapple (a Visible Customer) who they target with their new Dr. Pepper 10. I would be very surprised if they said, for example, “Men in the northeast.”You will hear an answer more like “Men of a certain age, in a certain region of the world, that have tried a competing product and disliked it, that have a lifestyle.” If you are not able to get to this level of segmentation with your social media analytics, then it is time to “Turbocharge.”

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