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July 22nd, 2012 by Tan Wei Shen under Commentary, Technology

The need for real-time analytics

The baseline for all social media interactions (it is “social” after all) demands two-way conversation, interaction, and response. At the end of the day though, with every status update or wall post entered, we still have to ask ourselves:  what is happening, and what does the data mean?

Real-time analytics is particularly useful in this area as a means to instantly view and track our performance. Rather than batch analytics, which measures the data collected in the timeframe between two events, real-time analytics allows us to make sense of data while more data is being gathered during the course of an event. Below, let’s explore 3 reasons why real-time analytics is so crucial in social media today.

  1. You need to know what is happening. Chances are, unless you have an analyst or marketing background, you will not be entirely clear on the interactions that are constantly happening on the social web. On our end, we need to know how people react when we tweet, or reveal offers and promotions on our Facebook page. Do they immediately start sharing this information? Does buzz take a while to build? Real-time analytics can provide data such as reach, views and shares, which provides crucial numerical data to analyse and measure
  2. You need to adjust to what’s happening. Depending on how people take to your posts or promotions online, you need to be able to adjust and react accordingly. For instance, if a promotion for a buy-2-get-1-free deal was offered, the amount of people who click on the link (either via a shortened link or tracked through Google Analytics for instance) and share the deal will provide a rough indication of whether there will be sufficient demand, and if supply should be adjusted accordingly.
  3. You need to measure everything that goes on in order to accurately determine the full extent of your efforts. For instance, measuring everything that is said in reaction to your posts on your Facebook wall (comments, shares), including sentiment, will provide you with a quick snapshot of how people react to posts in these categories. Through testing, you should be able to determine in the long-run which posts your audience is most enthusiastic about, as well as whether promotions are generally welcome by the audience.

Social media is constantly moving and evolving, which makes it all the more important to track and monitor the social media in real-time. Why not try out JamiQ’s social media monitoring solution while you are here?

July 6th, 2012 by Tan Wei Shen under Commentary

Additional Social Media statistics for the CHC Scandal

The recent City Harvest Scandal has pretty much piqued the interest of almost every Singaporean, religious or otherwise. Supporters have actively taken to social media to defend the Pastor and the other accused Church members at the center of this controversy, while other online netizens flamed and critiqued Sun Ho’s music career. Even Singapore Press Holdings has been “singled out” by City Harvest Church to be “dealt with”.

All that aside though, the entire scandal has generated quite a fair bit of chatter online across various social media channels. Here are some of the more interesting statistics we’ve tracked so far with JamiQ Buzz since the 25th of June.

1) It should come as no surprise that most entries actually came from Singapore. What was surprising though, was the fact that the country with the 2nd highest number of entries was Indonesia, with about 1300 entries since the 25th of June. This came mostly in the form of tweets and retweets from Indonesia, with most expressing positive sentiments, and support for Pastor Kong Hee. We assume though, that this mostly comes from Indonesians that might be church-goers of City Harvest Church, unlikely as it may seem.

On a side note, there were several Twitter handles and accounts from the US which hijacked and spammed the Twitter hashtags #IbelieveintheCHCCrossover and #mytrustisnotbreached after it started trending in Singapore.

2) Over the course of the scandal, overall chatter on the topic averaged at roughly 1400 posts per day, with the highest amount of chatter recorded on the 27th of June (close to 5000 entries). Since then however, the amount of chatter has gradually decreased as most Singaporeans lost interest in the scandal (or at least until more details get revealed in the upcoming court case) and turned their attention and social media presence elsewhere. By the 2nd of July, total entries per day barely broke the 200 mark. Based on these results, we assume that interest and chatter about this topic will increase sharply again once court proceedings begin on the 25th of July.

3) Chatter and discussion of the scandal came from a variety of media channels, most notably Twitter (close to 90% of total chatter), forums (close to 6%) and blogs (close to 2%). Interestingly, forum and blog sentiments presented overwhelming negative sentiments, while Twitter presented mostly positive sentiments. Upon closer inspection, this was mostly due to the fact that CHC supporters mainly exerted their social presence on Twitter. By retweeting positive tweets and quotes from Pastor Kong Hee and his wife, as well as through judicious usage of the hashtags #IbelieveintheCHCCrossover and #mytrustisnotbreached, the CHC supporters attempted to overturn the tide of negative sentiment that came from the horde of critical netizens. And it would seem that numerically, they succeeded.

This does raise certain questions though. Why does there seem to be more fervent support on Twitter as opposed to other mediums? Is Twitter as a social channel more accurate in expressing sentiments on the ground due to the ease of posting messages and retweeting?

4) There has generally been a wide array of content posted up by netizens critical of City Harvest Church over the scandal. Posts have varied greatly, ranging from critiques and discussions about the breadth of Sun Ho’s music career, to a financial analysis of the ways City Harvest encourage and promote tithing; there were even a number of articles which followed the evolution of Pastor Kong’s household from an ordinary HDB flat in Tampines, to a multi-million dollar home in Sentosa Cove. Generally, there has been more content generated by negative netizens – presumably because this is one outlet they can use to express their frustrations – as opposed to supporters of CHC. Generally, there has been little to no entries in the form of blog entries (or anything of substantial length) that gives a positive spin to the events surrounding Pastor Kong Hee and CHC.

Do check back on this blog for more social insights and updates as we continue monitoring this unfolding issue.

June 18th, 2012 by Tan Wei Shen under Commentary

Social Media Crisis Checklist

Crisis Checklist

Social media crises situations are like a blow beneath the belt – it may seem small and trivial at first, but the aftereffects are usually deceptively painful. And when crises happen, most people and companies are often at a loss about what to do.

Based on our experience managing and monitoring social media crises for clients across Asia, we have come up with a simple Social Media Crisis Checklist for brands to better manage their crisis situations. This checklist is designed especially for PR users, but we’re sure it will fit well with anyone managing a crisis online.

The next time you find yourself or your client in a crisis, don’t panic, just follow these steps one at a time. It’s worked for us and our clients. We’re sure it’ll work for you.

For printing and distribution, download the high-res PDF here.

Feel free to share it and we appreciate if you could credit us in your post.

June 1st, 2012 by Tan Wei Shen under Commentary

The price of engagement

How much are our efforts on the social media worth?

For some time, I’ve been unable to answer clients’ questions on how they should value the entries they obtain through the social media. “How much is this blogger’s post worth?” “How much is a tweet about my client’s product in financial dollars?” Here at JamiQ, we deal with a lot of measurement and big data, but because of the different context of these posts (for instance, how would you differentiate the value between a Foursquare check-in on Twitter vs an actual Tweet about your client’s F&B outlet? Hint: I don’t think you can! Not yet anyway.), it’s often really hard to ascribe a fixed value to these posts.

But we all have to start somewhere. Cloud security company Backupify takes a more general approach in calculating the value of social media posts – taking each company’s estimated annual revenue and dividing it by the number of items of content.

This allows us to arrive at these magic numbers: a Tweet is worth USD$0.001; while a Facebook share, USD$0.024. Which means realistically, if you wanted to get 10 USD$ worth of value from Twitter alone, You would need a staggering 8,896 tweets about your product or brand.

(You can view the infographic here and the original post on it here!)

Of course, this is a really base calculation that doesn’t take into account the more indirect aspects of social media, such as the value obtained from additional eyeballs from the post, number of conversions to direct sales, etc. What it does show however, is the staggering amount of chatter and data present across the various mediums – and how the true value of engagement is often lost against the backdrop of the sheer total volume of chatter across social media.

How do we determine “true” value then? There isn’t a standard answer across brand or industry, but I can tell you – I am pretty sure it involves taking a stab in the dark and spending an arbitrary amount of money first.

More to be shared on this next week!

May 25th, 2012 by Tan Wei Shen under Commentary

Traditional Social Media vs Visual Media

Pinterest_Logo instagram

Is Pinterest and Instagram really the way forward for social media marketing?

Facebook yesterday announced the launch of its Facebook Camera app for iOS users, less than 2 months after the social network giant made headlines around the world with the news that it was acquiring Instagram, the popular photo sharing service, for a staggering 1 billion.

Besides the fact that the Facebook IPO isn’t reaching the valuation investors initially suggested, the Facebook Camera app – which by all accounts contains functions and filters which are mostly similar to Instagram – comes at a time when social media users remain highly enamoured by images, and the messages/brands/feelings they can convey. Wanna push your brand new product through social media using Facebook and Twitter? You’re more likely to enjoy greater success nowadays by snapping pictures of your product (artistically of course), choosing a nice filter, and posting it on Instagram and Pinterest. Congratulations, you’ve become a saavy visual social media marketeer!

Melodramatics aside, the rise of visual social media does pose a threat to the more traditional (you never thought you’d see the day when both of these words are used in the same space, did you?) social mediums, notably Facebook and Twitter. Already, Google+ has seen a decrease in activity since Pinterest started appearing on everyone’s social radar (report here). Sure, you can post and share photos and images on these services, but it’s not nearly the same thing. The main difference is, communities like Pinterest and Instagram were built from the ground up, with a focus on image sharing, not with the image added as an afterthought. Oddly enough, that proved to be more than enough.

So now that we know that Visual Social Media will probably be the Next Big Thing in every social media manager’s portfolio, what are some of the pitfalls we should avoid?

1) Don’t over-saturate your feed with branding

Ok, this seems like the very opposite of what you should be doing. What this basically means though, is that if your company already has a highly visible logo and brand (think Mcdonald’s golden arches for instance), the last thing you’d want to do, is to bombard your feed with more photos of those arches. A little goes a long way when it comes to images, and in this case, it’s often better to find meaningful images that will tie your brand and consumers together rather than go trigger happy with posting mundane images.

2) Don’t re-use content

Some brands make the mistake of sharing ALL their content across ALL their social media identities. One thing to note that since Instagram and Pinterest are mostly image sites, content should for the most part be different. If the same images are used across all your identities however, you’re not creating any intrinsic value for your consumers to follow all your social media identities. If a consumer could see the same photo on Facebook, why should he or she follow you on Instagram and Pinterest and be flooded by the same images when he checks in?

3) No press shots

Taking a photo that was included in a press release and uploading it on your Instagram or Pinterest profile (even if you add a filter, it REALLY doesn’t count) just smacks of laziness. Users follow brands on Instagram or Pinterest mainly because they hope to see photos or images that are less run-of-the-mill and which better reveal the inner workings of the brand or corporation. It could be just as innocent as inpromptu shots of employees preparing coffee in the morning, or the unpacking of products – shots like these are what create connections with followers.

4) Don’t ditch the community

If you start with these communities, attribute the same amount of time and effort you would to your Facebook and Twitter profiles as you would to your Instagram and Pinterest profiles. It’s really easy for followers to tell the sincere brands from the insincere ones – especially when the feeds stop coming.

April 25th, 2012 by Tan Wei Shen under Commentary

Social Media Analytics and Measurement (Part 1)

Within a B2C climate, one of the common headaches faced by marketers is trying to ascribe values or worth to things such as Facebook Likes and Posts. Others complain that with the huge amount of data readily available for companies, it becomes tiring trying to figure out what matters to your brand or department, and what doesn’t.

That said, there are a set of metrics which can be used to determine the effectiveness of your Marketing and Sales campaigns on Social Media.

Measurement Infographic

(Infographic created by the folks at Awareness – major props to them for the excellent work. Visit their website for an in-depth white paper!)

For the more mathematically inclined, there are advanced metrics for you to try out as well in order to identify and take advantage of trends.

Of course, ideally, you should have a social media listening tool already in place to obtain this data for you.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is where we come in.

April 19th, 2012 by Benjamin Koe under Commentary

Making Friends & Influencing People

Our friends over at WeAreSocial Singapore have put together a fantastic presentation on social media marketing. We of course want to emphasize slide 24: “Listening is the new shouting”. So true. If you’re looking for a place to begin your social media marketing, this is one we’d recommend.

November 16th, 2011 by Benjamin Koe under Commentary

Social Media Measurement Framework

As it stands, there is no single best way to measure the success of digital and social media campaigns. People have been talking ROI, sentiment, and traffic for the longest time without much consensus or standards. In working with many clients at JamiQ, we have come up with a simple measurement framework that you may find useful to measuring the success of your digital and social media campaigns.

This approach looks at measurement from the point of view of a customer or public’s Awareness, Consideration, Loyalty, and Advocacy of your brand. This simple framework measured over time will give you an understanding of your target audience as they grow and interact with your brand.

As all frameworks go, this is a work in progress and we would love to hear your views on how we can improve this.

August 18th, 2011 by Mythreyi Krishnan under Commentary

Healthcare sector jumping on the social media bandwagon

“If you don’t have a social presence, you will be left behind”. This seems to be the magic mantra in 2011 where even companies that did not traditionally engage with consumers online are doing so with gusto. For instance, the healthcare industry  has started to use social media to both engage and inform. They seem to be on the right path as studies reveal that a growing number of consumers look to online sources for information and suggestions in regards to health related services and products. In fact, 57 percent of consumers thought that social media connections would have a strong impact on their likelihood to seek treatment at the hospital. Other key findings reveal that:

- 25% of consumers said that they are likely to connect with hospitals via social media in the future.

- Those most likely to connect with hospitals are women between the ages 36-64.

- Eighty-one percent of consumers believe that if a hospital has a strong social media presence, they are likely to be more “cutting edge.”

This is not limited to western countries alone as hospitals in developing nations such as India are proactively reaching out to the public via social media. For instance, Fortis Hospital , the largest healthcare chain in India with a global presence including in Australia, Hong Kong and Singapore has over 1200 followers on twitter. They share information on new techniques, patient success stories and also engage their followers in campaigns such as the movement to kill smoking.

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Other tracks in healthcare such as the pharmaceutical industry are also treading on social media turf for marketing purposes. Pharma companies use channels like Youtube, facebook, twitter as well as forums. However, for pharma companies,it gets a little tricky because of strict laws governing how drugs can be advertised in public space.

Some brands have gotten around this by bypassing the hard sell, instead creating online platforms for patients such as support communities for cancer survivors, people living with cystic fibroris and children with diabities. One of these is a cystic fibrosis support community called CF Voice. It is sponsored by Novartis, which markets a range of drugs and medicines. The website allows patients and their parents to learn more about treatment options, track their treatments online and connect with others going through the same journey.

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They’ve even produced films about children who have overcome their limitations to become independent and healthy.

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However, healthcare chains and pharma companies are required to follow strict guidelines when marketing their products. In 2010, the FDA(Food and Drug administration) in America sent a warning letter to a company based out of Utah which was selling drugs that could supposedly prevent catching the H1N1 virus. As these drugs were not approved by the authorities, marketing them was strictly disallowed. Other prominent brands such as Johnson & Johnson and GlaxoSmithKline were also warned for “misleading” marketing messages on social media.

August 11th, 2011 by Mythreyi Krishnan under Commentary

Geo Location trend: Why you should take notice

Using geolocation technology, a person’s real world physical location can be identified. If the individual is on a computer, then the IP address is tracked. This also works for outdoor wi-fi spots in cafes, airports and shops. Location can even be tracked on a smartphone using the in-built GPS system.

Several apps dedicated to geo location have sprung up recently, the most popular one being foursquare. There are over 10 million users who are registered with foursquare as of 2011 ammassing close to 400 million check-ins. Apps such as foursquare, Gowalla, Brightkite and Loopt have taken geolocation and made it fun and interactive. They have simply made it more ‘social’ thereby attracting users to sign up which have then pulled in businesses to make use of it as well.

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Foursquare

starbucks_mayor

The current king of geo location automatically checks you in to a place where you’ve arrived with its new Checkmate app. The user who has checked into a location most number of times, whether it be the local starbucks outlet or a dentist’s office is awarded the title of mayor of that particular location until he is usurped by someone with a higher number of check-ins. You can also earn badges ranging from newbie to Superstar depending on usage volume.

Businesses like Starbucks have made use of foursquare by offering a honorary “barista” badge if a customer makes a certain number of visits to an outlet. Mayors of outlets are allowed to avail a free frappacino or given other perks. Not only is this a creative use of the app, it encourages customers to  patronize outlets and makes them feel part of the brand. The fact that a simple app can motivate customers to return to certain stores or feel a certain attachment makes it powerful and opens up numerous possibilities for business, both big and small.

Facebook places

facebook-places-iphone-app

Checking into places on facebook is similar to other apps but it depends less on GPS tracking. Users can check in on their desktop computers or through their smartphones via touch.facebook.com.You can also tag friends you are hanging out with and check in your friends to the location. This will show up on their news feeds after they approve the tag.

For businesses, they will be able to link their places listing to their facebook page which will come with the wall and comments functions. They can then offer special prices or discounts for patrons who check into the place listing. However, facebook places is currently available in a limited number of countries including United States, Japan, Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Spain, Italy, Germany, Switzerland, Denmark, Norway and Sweden and Singapore.

Geolocation could be very beneficial for small business owners who don’t command a large number of users or traffic volume on their twitter or facebook pages. They can raise their profile as well as improve customer retention by offering special discounts and freebies. Although geo location usage is still only within the domain of early adaptors who are not very concerned about privacy issues, it is set to be big in 2011. With social media integration carrying the midas touch, geo location is likely to be a hit as well.

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