The nature of social media
Social media plays a major role for organisation of all types, shapes and sizes. Social media is the biggest medium of user generated content, a place where ‘online crowds’ gather to tell each other about their daily happenings, milestone occasions in their lives, discuss and share a passion for something with like-minded individuals and connect with people from different parts of the world.
The impact of social media for businesses
The impact of social media at a corporate level is just as big or arguably bigger. Social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter make it easier for organisations to target their desired market due to their assimilation in concentrated online crowds. Similarly the advent of LinkedIn, achieves a similar output on a business to business level.
As a large and well known organisation, that people are aware of, social media is the platform where one can easily attract those who are loyal to your organisation to further strengthen this loyalty, whilst using key brand differentiators to extend your reach in other markets, previously untapped.
For new or small organisations social media is a breath of fresh air because it is a practically free tool (unless utilising sponsored posts/tweets) and is easy to use for gathering your own online crowd, extending reach and effectively pitting your wits against your larger counterparts. Previously, this was an impossible task owing the financial muscle of large organisations.
Risks of social media for businesses
As great as social media sounds, it does bring certain elements of risk. Contrary to pre-social media times where consumer knowledge of an organisation was limited to what was exposed to them, now they have access to large amounts of information that is used to compare prices, customer service level, product range and so forth between similar competing organisations and thus (especially larger) organisations cannot rest on their laurels. However, an even greater implication of social media is the transparency of information. As a user generated content medium an organisation has no control over what people say about them, therefore if you want to know what customers think of you, a social media presence is a must.
Using data from social media to your advantage
An issue most organisations may face is a way to harness data present on social media sites, full of customer opinions and reviews about their products and services, and gain value from it. The purpose of a marketing strategy is to identify a method of increasing sales and achieving a competitive advantage thus it is essential to use data from a company’s own social media page as well data outside the immediate visual scope, to help formulate a strategy. An individual post by post level of response and action is achievable, for example, in the unfortunate scenario of a negative comment. The question still lies, however, in using the data at a large scale to the extent it that it influences the marketing strategy going forward, addressing the collective negatives, building on the positives and identifying possible emerging markets.
Sentiment analysis engines are perfectly fit to manage and visualise social media data in a way that is made actionable. Sentiment analytic is a natural language processing (NLP) tool that is able to connect to various social media sites and turn social noise into social intelligence. NLP lets organisations address negative experience and make the most of positive ones. Using the concept of data theming, one can identify useful trends that will assist an organisation in the direction it takes regarding its marketing strategy. Moreover, the output of data illustrates the sentiment and emotion that is being expressed. Learn more about the technical specifications and data visualisation capacity of sentiment analytic in our earlier blog ‘Can analysis turn customer feedback into actions?’
“Customers will spend 13% more with an organisation when they have a good customer experience”
DCC are passionate about harnessing and unlocking the hidden powers of data for the benefit of health and other public sector services and private sector organisations, read more about us. Have an enquiry? Or book a free knowledge share consultation.