Is there anything left unsaid about social media research and marketing?: Part 1

Is there anything left unsaid about social media research and marketing?: Part 1

I am sitting here thinking about how I can write something on social media marketing and consumer insights that:

  • has not been discussed before
  • will be of real value to our readers
  • does not give the impression that I am trying to sell anything (even though at the end of the day, I have to).

The words that spring to mind are: ‘genuine’ and ‘authentic’. How do I connect with the readers of our blog, demonstrating a genuine desire to be helpful and offer take-home-value that is timely?

I’ve decided to talk about three things in a series of blog posts on the subject of next generation market research:

1)      EFM = Enterprise Feedback Management

2)      Short intercept surveys Vs long surveys, days after an event

3)      Sentiment Vs Semantic analysis


Part 1: Enterprise Feedback Management

In the first part of the series I will talk about EFM; let’s start with the Wikipedia definition:

“Enterprise feedback management is a system of processes and software that enables organizations to centrally manage deployment of surveys while dispersing authoring and analysis throughout an organization…

…Modern EFM systems can track feedback from a variety of sources including customers, market researchsocial media, employees, data collection, vendors, partners and audits in a privatized or public manner.”

EFM is another case of disruption of a very specific part of market research: the stakeholder assessment. To say during a conference speech: the current market research model is broken not only sounds interesting and makes a speech more ‘spicy’, it is also true. Unfortunately, the market research sector has been very slow in adapting to change, with the result being that tech companies have mushroomed in the areas of DIY, Social Media Monitoring, Mobile and EFM.

I have already been accused by some colleagues from the research industry that I use provocative statements ‘to attract attention’ and that there is little depth in my argumentation; in other words, they say that these are cheap sales tricks that are transparent to everyone.  So, in line with the old Roman proverb:  “Caesar’s wife must not only be honest but must also be seen to be honest” ….not only we must be genuine and authentic, but must also be seen to be genuine and authentic.

My view about EFM is that it is very valuable and on the right track, but rarely are things just black or white. An organisation cannot replace their customer loyalty and employee engagement programmes (run by a market research agency), with a flashy software platform from one day to the next. Our suggestion to clients is to always ‘connect the dots’, to combine multiple sources of information, i.e. marry state of the art technology with experienced analysts and data scientists; only then, can true insights be synthesized. A machine cannot do that on its own - even if the best machine learning algorithms are employed, utilising the best methods of predictive analytics.

What I do like about EFM is the ability to ask a few questions whilst a customer is experiencing a product/service during the purchase journey; this also relates to the second subject of this blog series about short intercepts. I believe they work a lot better than 20 minute customer satisfaction surveys carried out once a year because people tend to forget a few days after an event. I also like the fact that with EFM we can observe customer behaviour and include it in the mix of data sources that will then allow the analyst to synthesize and come up with nuggets of insight.

At DigitalMR we currently evaluate possibilities to integrate existing EFM software or to develop elements of it and include them in MRHub, to enhance our existing data sources from both web listening and from asking questions in qualitative and quantitative online market research.

Click here for Part 2: ‘Short intercept surveys Vs long surveys, days after an event’.


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