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Digimind Combines Social Listening, Location For Global Brands

Monitoring conversations on social can help physical businesses do everything from spot trending topics to decide where to open a new flagship store, says Digimind's Vincent Corbo.

In 2016, stating that brands need to be active on social media is sort of akin to saying the sky is blue; anymore, it’s just a fact.

But it’s one thing for a brand to send out a tweet and analyze the engagement, and another to be able to “listen in” on organic social conversations happening just between customers — and with a combination of social analytics, audience segmentation, and location insights, this is what Digimind aims to do.

“The goal is to make it very simple for users to understand what’s going on across social channels,” said Digimind’s Vincent Corbo. “We break it down [to create a full picture] of who is saying what, where, and at which time.”

GeoMarketing: How did Digimind enter the social “listening” space? And why is it so vital for brands to understand and manage social conversations today?

Vincent Corbo: Let me start by giving a quick history of Digimind, because I think it’s important to understand where we came from. Basically, Digimind started out over in France about 15 years ago. We started life as a business intelligence agency.

Why is that important to anybody? It’s really important because this was kind of the predecessor to social listening. We were in the competitive intelligence field, so this enabled us to build out the infrastructure in which the Digimind social listening tool currently sits. We were already aggregating data as part of a competitive intelligence offering for our clients — it just wasn’t across social channels. Now, we do all of it. The Digimind social listening tool almost doubles as a competitive intelligence tool, as well.

How so? What does the platform do today?

Well, one of the things that differentiates us, really, is that we help brands and companies manage their online reputation across three dimensions.

The first dimension that we monitor is the organic conversation. This is our listening portion. We’ve got what’s being said, when it’s being said, where it’s being said, who’s saying it — across social channels.

The second portion there is my top reputation. That’s actually what Google’s saying about you [and what’s coming up during searches] because, whether you know it or not, Google talks behind your back more than high school girls do. Where does anybody go first for any type of information? They go to Google.

What we actually do there is a consumer behavior analysis. It’s very different from search engine optimization in that we’re capturing phrases of how people are actually searching for these companies and brands online. What do their queries look like, and what does that tell us about them?

We can use this data to help identify trends before they become socially viral. We can also use it to look at what keywords [a brand] needs to be ranking for.

Lastly, there’s the analytics portion, which is basically the owned social media content. We break that out [for brands] based on the size of the community, percentage of interactions, publications, etc.

Tell me more about the insights you can provide based on the social listening tool; how does understanding the organic social dialogue help brands both retain customers and win over new fans?

In our listening portion, we break out [content] into what, when, where, who, and how. The goal is to make it very simple for users to understand what’s going on across these channels: who is saying what, where, and at what time.

Let me give an example: For an airline, let’s say, they’re interested in [what customers are saying about] baggage, check-in, comfort, food, drinks, etc. We can break all of that out to identify [the source], and we can also organize the [social conversations] by sentiment: Are the conversations about [the airline’s] check-in process negative, neutral, or positive? Then, the airline understands what customers are saying, and they can address it — or even [preempt] issues that they [hear about before they become mass] concerns.

This [listening tool] spans 18 social media networks, and it’s about to be 21: We’re just now adding in Yelp, Glassdoor, and WeChat.

We also just implemented our image recognition through a partnership with Ditto. Basically, now we’re monitoring all the images coming in from Twitter, and we are going to be expanding into Facebook and Instagram shortly.

What does image recognition allow brands to do?

I’ll use the example of a liquor company: We’ve had a lot of them approach us to capture more organic mentions because, well, what happens when people are out? They’re with their friends, they’re having a few drinks. Typically, there are pictures being taken that will include the drink.

So the social post caption may not say “we’re drinking Coronas,” but the beer will be pictured. So the brand wants to know about that and capture that information. 

Exactly.

Digimind monitors 200 languages and analyzes sentiment for 60. That means you can build out a global view of social conversations for brands that have an international presence. How does location play a role in what you do?

Yeah, the location aspect is pretty cool. We enable users to drill down all the way to the city or town level. If you wanted to be in Los Angeles, you could see only the [social] data for Los Angeles and/or it’s surrounding areas.

And then there’s the world map, which displays the different conversations happening around the world. For brick-and-mortar chains — and [all] global brands — this can be really important: If they want to identify a new market to potentially put a flagship store in, this is a great way to identify that. They can see what countries and what cities in those countries have the most conversations surrounding things that the brand has deemed relevant. That tells them where the interest is.

So, how does Digimind help brands have these more relevant conversations — and translate them into sales? 

Well you and I both know that, especially in America, if there’s a screen on it, somebody’s advertising there. But if it’s not an advertisement that’s relevant to me and my everyday lifestyle, I don’t really care about it at all and it’s just background noise to me, right?

Our tool is able to map conversations by clusters, and that helps [drill down] conversations to the most relevant points.

Here’s an example of what that means: I’m a big Yankee fan. So we could be talking about the Yankees [on Twitter], but, in actuality, we’re talking about Derek Jeter. So, the overall concept was Yankees, but really focus of the conversation was Derek Jeter. Digimind’s cluster section allows us to identify the “Derek Jeters” of the conversation to really drive that relevancy.

We actually did a case study a couple months back for Adobe. Essentially, they did a product launch and they discovered that there was explosive conversation [online] —but Adobe wasn’t seeing any sales. They came to us, and I showed them the map of the conversation “clusters.”

When we used the [keyword] cluster idea to drill down, we discovered that people were talking about one specific feature of the product that they had been clamoring for for years. Once Adobe started to create marketing content around that particular feature, that’s when the sales went through the roof. Being able to do that is pretty important for marketers to identify what they need to be talking to their market about.

This is also important in our influencer portions, which help identify brand ambassadors who will be [the most effective] evangelists.

We do an influencer intelligence across 12 different channels. Rank scores for [influencers] show  how active an author is and what type of impact they could potentially have on your audience. The higher the score, the more impact they could have.

At the end of the day, the idea is that it’s important to see how your brand image is being perceived across the internet in comparison to your competitors. It’s not just about the number of social mentions; what we care about is the actual people. We can help brands answer the key questions: What was the reach on this and how did [my customers] feel about me? Being able to act on those is what builds [consumer/brand] relationships.

About The Author
Lauryn Chamberlain Lauryn Chamberlain @laurynchamberla

Lauryn Chamberlain is the Associate Editor of GeoMarketing.com. A New York City based journalist, she specializes in stories related to retail, dining, hospitality, and travel.