Network topology in action with Traackr: CIPR Share This Too


As my fellow CIPR Social Media Panel member Rachel Miller has already ably blogged, Share This Too is due to be published by Wiley at the end of August. 

My contribution to this edition is a chapter on network topology – the study of the structure of networks. And in a very timely and helpful co-incidence, I’ve just recently gained access to a practical example of network toplogy in action with direct relevance to the world of social media and PR.

Many of you will already be familiar with Traackr. For those who aren’t, it is probably best described as an influencer identification tool. It allows you to easily build lists of key influencers relative to a specific topic or issue by looking at the reach, resonance and relevancy of individuals across all the major social platforms, as well as blogs and media outlets.

In the last week, Traackr has announced the availability of a new network analysis function. In simple terms, it now allows you to actually visualise the structure of relationships within your list of influencers.

It also allows you to see people who aren’t already part of your influence list – and yet should be – based upon their relationships with people who you are already targetting.

To provide an example, I’ve created a project in Traackr based around the topic of social media analytics. In order to help Traackr determine who the most relevant influencers might be for your chosen topic, you have to provide a list of keywords that would best match the content and interests of the people you are seeking. The more relevant the keywords you provide, the more accurate the list that Traackr creates.

In the case of social media analytics, I’ve used Google’s Keyword Planner tool to generate an initial seed list which I then plug into Traackr.

Here’s a screen shot of my initial list as ranked by Traackr (go here for more info as to how Traackr decides who to pick).

Traackr

So now I have my list. By clicking on the network tab, I now generate a visual map of the connections within my Influencer A List – it also shows me which people engage with each other in a meaningful way. Here’s a screen shot:

Traackr

The larger the circle, the more engaged that person is with others in the list.  You can see who influences who (in the sense of which person gets more resonance and engagement from others – and vice versa).

Here’s an example based on Euler Partner’s Phil Sheldrake. You can get insight into the structure and influence patterns of any individual on the list.

Traackr

It doesn’t take much to understand how this can have very practical use in PR and social media. By identifying where people sit in the network, you can use this topological information to plan who you should target and how you should target them. Sometimes it might mean going for the people who are most central to the network. Or you might identify people who are important bridges between two sub-groups of influencers.

I’m still exploring the possibilities of the tool. However, it is a great example of how network topology has practical uses in the world of social media and PR. Read more about it when Share This Too is published ;)

The Guardian: Effective Social Media Analytics – featuring Andrew Bruce Smith (+others)


The Guardian ran a nice piece on Effective Social Media Analytics by Danny Bradbury on June 10th 2013. Among the the top notch social media experts featured in the article were Phil Sheldrake, Marshall Sponder and Sharon Flaherty from Confused.com. Oh, and me ;)

I appreciated the opportunity to talk about some of my favourite hobby horses including social media ROI, financial vs non-financial outcomes and how to use Google Analytics to measure the value of social media. All topics that regular readers of this blog will be familiar with.

social media analytics

Crowdbooster: an inexpensive social media measurement tool for those new to social media


One of the most common questions asked on my CIPR Social Media workshops is: can I recommend an inexpensive social media measurement tool?

And by inexpensive, people usually mean either free or under £10 a month.

Which is why Crowdbooster might be worth considering for those who have little or no experience of social media monitoring in a professional context.

Crowdbooster has been around for some time. It has been free until now, but is introducing a tiered pricing policy from March 2013. At an entry price of $9 a month to measure one Twitter account plus one Facebook page, this for me fits the definition of inexpensive.

The reason for highlighting Crowdbooster is its recently updated user interface which makes it a good choice for the beginner who wants something simple and easy to work with.

The tool comprises three parts: Analyze, Publish, Engage

Analyze 

The analysis section allows you to get an understanding of how your Tweets have performed along four dimensions: impressions, retweets, @ mentions and time.

What’s nice about Crowdbooster is that it provides a single visual display that clearly shows all of these elements in one view.

Here’s a snapshot of my Twitter activity over the last 24 hours (the tool will also provide similar for Facebook pages too). But you can specify any timeframe you like.

crowdbooster

Clicking on a bubble will display the details of the relevant Tweet at the bottom of the screen.

Publish

The publish element allows you to Tweet or post to Facebook. It also allows you to schedule in advance when your posts go out.

Although not as flexible as Autoscheduling in Hootsuite or Sprout Social, for those just starting out, it will probably be more than enough to give them a taste of how to plan for message distribution.

Engage 

Finally, the Engage element provides a rudimentary list of the people who Retweet you the most as well as your followers who in turn have the highest follower counts.

As with most tools these days, you can export the data in CSV format so you can perform your own analysis in a spreadsheet.

Hootsuite and Sprout Social obviously provide a lot more – but for those just starting out and want to test the water for little outlay, Crowdbooster is certainly worth a look.

________________________________

Little or no experience of social media?

Click here for more details of my next CIPR Introduction to Social Media workshop which runs on 5th February 2013.

 

Social Media ROI: your questions for M&S, Nokia, Giff Gaff and Bazaarvoice – #SocialBrands


How do M&S, Nokia, Giff Gaff and Bazaarvoice measure social media ROI? What tools do they use to measure social media value?

I’ll be putting these questions and more to senior representatives of all of these businesses at the Social Brands conference being held in London on Thursday February 7th 2013.

I’m moderating a panel with Lou Jones, Head of Online and Digital Marketing at M&S, Craig Hepburn, Global Director, Digital & Social Media at Nokia, Vincent Boon, Chief of Community at Giff Gaff, and Richard Anderson, VP Client Services at Bazaarvoice.

It should prove to be a lively discussion.

Feel free to leave your questions in the comment section below or Tweet me: @andismit.

Social Brands 2013

 

The conference overall has a very meaty line up of big brands and senior digital figures.

According to the organisers: “Social Brands is the only social media event bringing together those across marketing, communications, PR, brand, customer service and beyond. Join 150+ of your peers and hear from brands who are leading in the social space, driving long-term engagement and tying buzz to business results. Promising insight, inspiration and new ideas, this year’s agenda is packed with thought provoking speakers, invigorating debate and invaluable networking opportunities.”

And there is more info on Lanyrd too. Look forward to your questions!

Escherman becomes a HootSuite Pro Solution Partner in the UK


 

I’ve long extolled the virtues of Hootsuite as a social media management platform for PR and communications teams (*).

We’ve helped a number of individuals and teams get properly set up on Hootsuite.

As a result of getting more immersed in Hootsuite, I became a Hootsuite Certified Professional earlier this year. And I’ve continued to try and ensure we’ve kept fully up to speed with all the many capabilities of the platform.

It is therefore very gratifying to announce we have now been signed up as an official Hootsuite Solution Partner in the UK.

How nice you say. What’s the benefit of that?

In short, we now have access to a range of additional tools and resources so we can offer even more value to any team or organisation who wants to get the best out of Hootsuite.

Don’t forget, if you haven’t tried Hootsuite before, you can always sign up for a free 30 day trial – just click here.

And always happy to discuss how we can help people implement Hootsuite effectively.

(*) For those unfamiliar with it, HootSuite is a social media management system for businesses and organisations to collaboratively execute campaigns across multiple social networks from one secure, web-based dashboard. Key social network integrations include Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+, plus a suite of social content apps for YouTube, Flickr, Instagram, Yammer, Tumblr and more.

Earlier this year HootSuite hit 4 million users, including 79 of the Fortune 100 companies. Along with HootSuite’s web platform, 20% of users access the dashboard through their mobiles including iPhone, Android, Blackberry and iPad. HootSuite also offers localized versions of their dashboard in six languages – English, French, Italian, Japanese, Spanish and Portuguese.

There are many benefits to HootSuite Pro

Engage: Optimise your audience engagement by creating search streams, scheduling messages and monitoring all of your social network profiles from one customizable web and mobile dashboard.

Collaborate: Invite clients and colleagues to participate in your social media management. Assign messages for follow up and share streams, helping you increase efficiency.

Analyze: Measure your efforts using over 40 social analytics modules to build and share custom reports. Or select from one of our pre-made templates for quick and easy reporting.

Secure: Share access with team members without compromising security. The team permission levels and advanced sharing options ensure you remain in control of your valuable social profiles and accounts.

Sign up for a 30-day free trial of HootSuite Pro now.

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