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June 8th, 2012 by Tan Wei Shen under Technology

Profitez de l’utilisation de JamiQ en Francais – Enjoy the use of JamiQ in French!

That’s right, JamiQ Buzz now offers sentiment analysis in French!

Here at JamiQ, we seek to constantly improve our offerings for our clients. Our latest update brings sentiment analysis for the French language for our JamiQ Buzz product.

To test it out, we recently monitored some of the conversations surrounding the French Presidential Elections. Here are some of the mentions we categorized with the new sentiment analysis system which revolves around mentions of election candidate Sarkozy.

In French:

Positive Negative
Nicolas Sarkozy mise sur les électeurs du FN pour faire barrage au socialisme. Il a appelé jeudi à un «sursaut national».Source : Les EchosExplorer : FN, Nicolas Sarkozy, Partis politiques, Politique,… Sarkozy récuse un financement libyen en 2007, réitéré par l’ex …France.Antilles.fr GuadeloupeA trois jours du second tour de l’élection présidentielle, le président-candidat Nicolas Sarkozy a de nou…
20minutes.frEN DIRECT: Hollande perd 1,5 point dans un sondage… Le FN nomme …20minutes.frFrançois Hollande obtient 52,5% des intentions de vote face à Nicolas Sarkozy, soit une baisse d’un point e… “Nicolas Sarkozy était prisonnier de son costume de président”: Avec, d’ailleurs, de la mauvaise foi, pu…
Metro FranceEn direct. “La gauche a abîmé la République”, juge SarkozyMetro FranceSi François Hollande et Nicolas Sarkozy se sont opposés, parfois avec virulence, hier soir à la télévision, il n’y a p… François Bayrou votera Hollande, un désaveu pour SarkozyLe Nouvel ObservateurPARIS (Reuters) – François Bayrou a infligé jeudi un camouflet à Nicolas Sarkozy en annonçant qu’il voterait pour le social…

On a whole, the system is currently roughly  85% accurate, which is reasonable – the main advantage of such sentiment analysis being that it can analyze huge chunks of data quickly to get a rough aggregate of sentiment, which was useful in determining how people felt in the few days we monitored chatter about the elections.

You can read more about our analysis of the French elections here. And of course, if you would like to get started on monitoring your upcoming campaign in France, do contact us here.

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.

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.

2011-06-28_150819

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.

2011-06-27_122204

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.

July 18th, 2011 by Mythreyi Krishnan under Commentary

Social commerce revolutionizing online shopping

We already share information, debate politics, discuss our favorite celebrity’s latest antics and even make plans for dinners and birthdays on our social networks. They have become highly integrated in our daily lives to the point where many of us have become addicted to the F5 key, constantly hungry for updates. So it seems like a natural progression as shopping too enters the social world.

Online shopping is not a new concept , but integrating social elements into the experience is a new twist that is being embraced worldwide. Social shopping services are tech heavy relying on the prevalence of social media and technologies like smart phones and tablets. Another factor spurring social commerce is the fact that we are highly influenced by opinions originating in our social networks. Word of mouth buzz online can make or break a brand! For instance, a 2010 study conducted in the US revealed that 17% of respondents had used a social shopping site to buy something and more than 60% of all respondents had heard of or registered at these sites. 17% might not seem that big but this trend is sure to catch on with internet penetration increasing rapidly in developing countries and more such services springing up every day.

2011-06-21_155850

In terms of demographics, it’s the 18-34 age group that is most actively buying socially whilst those earning over $100,000 annually spending the most.

Group buying

Unless you’ve lived under a rock for the past couple of months, you might have heard of Groupon, arguably the most successful daily deal provider. Services like Groupon and LivingSocial provide cheap deals everyday and receive a lot of air time on twitter and facebook as users have shown a penchant for sharing these deals with their friends on social platforms.

2011-06-21_164016

Integration

Users are able to connect their facebook accounts to their amazon accounts to get access to product recommendations, based on their own data, as well as friends’ profiles and preferences. This feature could come in handy when you are trying to buy gifts for friends. In addition, you can also get information on birthdays and access their friends’ wish lists.

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Real time shopping

Labels like French connection have been quick to adapt social commerce. They’ve cleverly turned their YouTube channel into Youtique, an online boutique where customers can browse through videos showcasing their latest collections.

2011-06-21_153603

From the comfort of their homes, customers simply need to click the “Buy” pop up buttons which will then lead them to the website page with details about the product, where they can make the purchase.

With Social commerce catching on quickly, it is important for brands to integrate their customer’s shopping experience with the social networks they use. Not only will this bring more traffic but also pull in new customers via recommendations and the like.

June 15th, 2011 by Mythreyi Krishnan under Commentary

Social media across Asia : Indonesia

Indonesia, the 4th largest country in the world and one of the most populous also happens to be a huge social media fan. The nation is particularly obsessed with Twitter and is home to the 2nd highest number of users in Asia, according to comSCORE. A staggering 20.8% of internet users in Indonesia visited Twitter.com in January. It is estimated that Indonesian users make up for 15% of all tweets globally and are the sixth biggest twitter user base in the world.

Indonesia-social-Media

As for facebook, Indonesia has the 2nd highest number of users in the world. This isn’t surprising as internet is mostly used for social networking, photo sharing and watching videos by Indonesia netizens. A breakdown of the trending topics from January 2011 shows that conversations online mostly revolve around entertainment including soccer, music, television shows etc.

salingsilang-socmed-id-report-2011v2-110301043448-phpapp02

Source : Silang Silang

However, social media has also evolved into another role, that of a social watchdog. Indonesians are harnessing their social networks to speak out about everyday issues including politics and civic issues. For instance, when Michelle Obama shook hands with a conservative Muslim minister on an official visit to the country, this seemingly small incident sent the twitter sphere buzzing with many criticizing the minister and accusing him of being hypocritical to traditional Islamic customs.

In another case, when the Social Services minister was spotted driving his car in a dedicated ‘bus only lane’, an alert passerby promptly snapped a photo and uploaded it on twitter. More than 10000 views and numerous angry comments later, the minister responded accepting full responsibility and agreeing to pay the fine voluntarily. A more positive example is the “Save Jakarta” movement on twitter which encourages ordinary citizens to point out problems they were facing in the city everyday and make suggestions for improvement. This became an instant viral hit and empowered faceless online citizens to take charge of their city.

Interestingly, internet users in Indonesia surf the net and connect with each other more using their smartphones, the main reason being that it’s cheap! With the three main telecommunications companies in the country constantly butting heads over market share, service plans are very affordable especially in comparison to home broadband plans which can cost up to $100 monthly. Coupled with the advent of affordable smartphones from China, Indonesian users are spoilt for choice.

Currently, there are 31 million users who make up an eighth of the 242 million strong population. By 2015, this is predicted to rise to 94 million users. It goes without  saying that marketers are taking full advantage of this new medium to reach out to all sections of the population.

June 1st, 2011 by Mythreyi Krishnan under Commentary

Social media across Asia : China

In countries across Asia, young people have made similar number friends offline as they have made online. But, in China, youngsters actually have made a larger pool of friends online as a combination of socio-economic factors coupled with higher rate of internet penetration has led to a union of online and offline lives. Due to rural-urban migration many youngsters are separated from their families and find social networking a convenient way to keep in touch with those back home. Another reason often cited is the one child policy which has resulted in most young people growing up in single child homes. Social media has given them a chance to connect to people and share information on a daily basis.

Note that compared to internationally popular sites like facebook, myspace, YouTube and twitter, home-grown social networking sites are used heavily by the Chinese population. After the government disabled these platforms, numerous home-grown clone sites sprung up catering to various segments of the market. Some sites are more popular among 1st tier cities while others cater to 2nd and lower tiered cities. Accordingly, preference varies according to age as well. Techrice used their data to come up with the distribution across segments shown below.

China segmented

Qzone : Launched in 2005, this is the biggest site in terms of number of users which ranges anywhere between 300-480 million registered users according to various reports. Users are able to write blogs, keep an online diary and listen to music. This site is most popular among 2nd tier and 3rd tier cities in China.

Pengyou : Launched by the same company as Qzone, Pengyou meaning “friend” caters to both students and white collar workers. Pengyou is a networking platform for friends in real life whereas Qzone is mostly a network for instant messaging friends on QQ, the most popular IM platform in China.

Renren : this site has around 160 million registered users and is still growing. It is very popular among young people in 1st and 2nd tier cities, especially university students. It started off as Xiaonei.com, and was considered a carbon coby of Facebook with similar layout and the trademark shade of blue. Now, Renren has gained its own place in the social media space in China with 31 million active users monthly. In April 2011, it filed for an IPO in the US offering shares on the NYSE raising over US$743 million dollars.

Kaixin001: Another facebook clone that became one of the fastest growing sites in China by launching apps and games that is available on facebook. Kaixin, unlike Renren is targeted at the white collar worker who spends upto 9 hours in front of the computer each day. Accordingly the user interface is simpler and designed to be more intuitive to use.

Some unique usage patterns

  • Chinese netizens are the most likely to share a negative product review online. 62% of them attested to this compared to the global average of 41%
  • Personal: 1. Staying in touch is the most frequent use of social media 2.Read content 3.Make new friend
  • Business use: 1. Highlight personal expertise 2. Build network contacts  3. Identify lead
  • Chinese state-owned companies have been a late and slow adopter of social media compared to Chinese private firms and foreign subsidiaries in China.

china-internet-users-2010

According to a report last year, China has close to 460 million internet users with 34.3% internet penetration. This is up 19.1% from 2009 and still growing. With such a massive pool of potential consumers, the scope for monitoring is boundless. Web analytics is still shaky in China but monitoring what this community says about your brand is essential for any company.  According to a Nielson poll, Chinese netizens are the most likely to share a negative product review online, 62% of them attested to this compared to the global average of 41%. With stats like these, it would be prudent to have a constant eye on one of the most lucrative online communities in the world.

May 30th, 2011 by Mythreyi Krishnan under Commentary

Digital media trends 2011: Asia Pacific

The good folks at Edelman have recently released data on the use of social media in the Asia Pacific region for 2011. It is perhaps expected, that Facebook features as the most popular networking platform across most countries. In China, Renren rules whereas Twitter and Cyworld are the most popular in Japan and South Korea respectively. Overall, Facebook seems to be the common denominator across the region. However, it is interesting to note that there is variance in regards to what each community uses the internet to do. For instance, more than 90% of Vietnamese netizens read and write blogs whereas only 50.7% of Indians spend time on the blogosphere, preferring to use the internet for social networking.

In order to delve deeper into these variances, we will be studying one country each week to explore how and why people use social media. We will also look at trends pertaining to that particular region and what this means for companies and brands operating there.

Look out for our upcoming feature on China!

APAC-Social-Media-Map

May 13th, 2011 by Mythreyi Krishnan under Commentary

Social Media : Friend or Foe?

If you just read the title of this post and went “Huh?” let me remind you that Social media is not always as wonderful as it is made out to be. On the one hand, it allows companies and brands to directly engage with their customers and give them instant updates. On the other hand, these very benefits could come back to bite your head off if your social media efforts are mismanaged.

Honda Crosstour

Let me tell you the story of Honda. In 2010, they released photos of their product, the Accord Crosstour through their facebook page expecting to revel in the fanfare around their big launch. Unfortunately, for Honda, the fans on their page were none too pleased with the design of the vehicle and made no qualms about expressing this.

Facebook-Honda-Accord-Crosstour

Social media offers the best real time reactions from consumers a brand could ever ask for but what happens when these reactions are largely negative? One way of looking at it is to say “Hey, it’s free publicity, at least people care enough about the product and the brand to say something”. On the other side, it is a very real possibility that your sales could be adversely affected because of it.

In Honda’s case, the backlash did not stop there.  Among the sea of negative comments, Eddie Okubo posted the comment below without disclosing his affinity with the company.

eddie honda

He was called out for astroturfing* and although Honda tried to do some damage control by deleting select posts and comments on their page, this incident will remain a cautionary tale for all.

*”Astroturfing” is the act of trying to boost one’s image online with fake comments, paid-for reviews, made-up claims and testimonials.

November 11th, 2010 by Chan Chi-Loong under Commentary

Social media and “hacking” in Singapore: Singaporeans react to 369 gangs

Recently, hacking has taken on a different meaning in Singapore.

The gang murder at Pasir Ris Downtown East two weeks back and the slashing of seven youths at Bukit Panjang just this week sent Singapore’s Twitter, Facebook and blogs into overdrive.

Ever though we just started monitoring the Bukit Panjang incident about a day ago, we’ve collected more than 500 posts — in a day! –chattering about gangs in Singapore. Posts are starting to taper off a bit as the news cycle moves on, but there is still a significant amount of chatter.

To do a thorough analysis would take too much time, but just by skimming the posts and using basic tools and filters, I’ve come to the conclusion that there are basically three themes:

Are we safe in Singapore?

The first reaction is that Singaporeans are generally shocked that this is happening. There is a significant amount of posts lamenting about Singapore’s safety and checking up on friends and family, esp. in the Bukit Panjang area. On Twitter alone there are more than 70 of such posts since yesterday afternoon.

Examples:
It still scare me that im meeting my girls where the bukit panjang slashing takes place. Need to stay safe..
HannaFernaldo

Slashing case at bukit panjang now. Wtff, singapore is getting unsafee! Really unsafeeeeee.
SriAtiqaah

Who are these stupid hooligans?

Then there are the Singaporean who are angry at these idiots and wondering why the hell this is happening in Singapore. About 40+ twitter posts.

Examples:
What is wrong w the youths in Singapore today? Downtown East 23 youths arrested, Bukit Panjang 6 youths, all between 15-23yrs old? Why???
thamwaihoong

wtfcuk .. singapore getting worse … whats with these gang stuffs man ? slashing people for no reason .. -.-
haarishakishor

What is happening to SINGAPORE man??!!! Gang armed with parangs…going on slashing spree??? Downtown east murder not enough ar??
ItsBIGBANGyg

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