For the most part, traditional marketing is dominated by right-brain activity. Creativity, visualization, intuition - those characteristics drive success for brands in the media landscape. Quick, think of some of your favorite brand campaigns. Maybe Apple's 1984 spot. Or 20 years later, Mitsubishi's See What Happens. Maybe more recently, Old Spice Guy or The Most Interesting Man In The World.
Similarly, participating in social media is a right-brain activity. It's full of spontaneous self-expression and person-to-person community engagement. Brands receive recognition for using these new communication channels in innovative ways - whether Comcast using Twitter for customer service, Nike splicing hundreds of user videos together to create The Chain, or Dell taking to blogs to share information during a product recall. As brand participation in social media grew commonplace, analysts (like me) and managers began to wonder - is there a way to make sense of this? And if so, does it matter?
To answer these questions, left-brain thinking comes into play. In the traditional marketing world, market mix modeling (MMM) - correlative measurement of multi-channel media spend and sales results - can provide some answers. In the digital world, web analytics allow marketers to track activity and fine tune efforts. In the "social" world, finding a solution to "tick and tie" numbers hasn't been easy. The unstructured nature of social data creates challenges in automated analysis. Many vendors have access to data, but won't monitor sources unless they have financial incentive to do so. Moreover, most social media measurement focused on keyword mentions - useful for calculating buzz levels, but missing a wider perspective on social business activity.
Dachis Group would like to promote more left-brain social business thinking and help brands get a holistic perspective on their positioning relative to competitors and others. Today, we are opening up our Social Business Index to the public, offering perspective on the world's "most social" businesses.
The Social Business Index (SBI) is the first lens into the Dachis Group big data analytics platform, covering over 26,000 brands from over 20,000 companies, including over 100 million social accounts worldwide. We've invested significant time and energy into the SBI, sourcing from APIs, data buys, data partnerships, scraping, crowd sourcing, company contributions, and our own internal data team. We have had over 100 companies participating in an early access program leading up to this launch to help harden the data and provide insights on different ways the data can be used.
The SBI offers an unbiased, objective approach to how "social" a company and its brands are, helping make sense of social media activity's impact on business performance, starting with competitive positioning. This is the first in a series of lenses into the platform that will help brands answer performance questions that have been addressed to date by subjective analyses and self-reported results.
Public access is now available at http://www.socialbusinessindex.com - brands can register for more in-depth access to the tool.
It's time for left-brain thinking in social business.