What to consider when buying a social insights platform in 2016

Social data is no longer the baby brother of the big data insights world. Brands and agencies across the world have invested and integrated social analytical technology into their corporate business strategies, validating the importance of continuously understanding your consumers, and basing decisions on their unsolicited opinions. This month, Gartner’s Market Guide for Social insights highlighted the top questions in the business, and how to find the best product for every company. We broke down some of the highlights from the discussion, including value that the analyst report speaks of Crimson’s capabilities.
What do you need from your social insights tool? How accurate and in-depth do you need the analysis to be?
One thought process we impress upon our potential customers: understand what you’re looking for as a team and a company from your social insights platform before even starting a sales discussion. The best value you can get is from contextually valid and accurate results. We believe source of the data is important as well as the insights itself. Crimson’s data library hosts over 750 billion posts in its data library; and our patented technology supports each individual query in under a minute.
It’s important to ask these question before reaching out for sales demonstrations because these will remain to be the most important reason to purchase a tool. Even if a prettier solution is available, it might not provide the insight you need to make the strategic decisions that you need to. This results in a higher rate of product turnover. Bottom line? You want to keep your solution for as long it’s viable (without having to search as new products debut each year) so research what works across your teams before taking the call.
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What do you need to know specifically regarding your audiences? What can social insights help you learn about your customers?
There’s a lot of discussion that this is the coming age of the customer. Client services executives speak to the power of interpreting unbiased consumer opinion, and the importance of listening to more than just their general responses. Getting into the “why” behind the ways customers behave, where and when do they see products and how does that make them feel?
If these are significant questions you’re asking your team to answer, and it’s important your team be prepared to support their inferences with data. Social insights put the qualitative touch behind the statistics: they scale and slice through the the excess to display truly unique opinions about your business. Knowing your target audiences may seem like an easy task, but knowing why they behave in certain ways or how to target them and their surrounding brand interest effectively can be a great space for social insights to step in.
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What types of social  data do you need and how fast do you need it?
The majority of social media listening tools have some substance of data available, if you’re willing to pay or wait for it after you buy it. With Crimson’s technology, the data is already indexed and ready to query. There’s no lead time for purchasing new data, and no restrictions to querying it immediately: you can run as many queries as you want to get the results you need. This type of access can be the difference for an agency team in winning a pitch brief meeting, or landing a potential new opportunity with a powerful insight (found in less than a minute, like this audience analysis comparison of Nespresso and Keurig). 
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So what should buyers remember for the platforms they are searching through? In summary, what matters for finding the right tool for your business:

  1. Bring in a preconceived idea of what you need.
  2. Listen to what additional features are available from top-of-the-line products.
  3. Understand what data is available through each platform, and how easily available it is to pull information from each source.

Following these criteria, your team should find success on your search for the right insights platform for this new year.
For more information about Crimson Hexagon’s social analytics platform, set up a demonstration of our tool today. 

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