Views & Opinions

How do you really get to grips with social media numbers?

If you invest your money in online advertising, events, social media campaigns and any number of new media opportunities that clutter up your spreadsheet matrix, it’s hard to know where to begin when you want to break the numbers down. It’s hard not to think that you’re throwing your money down a great big bottomless cyber-well, for that matter. There are a lot of online strategists who can promise all sorts of returns. Most of them are promising to capture smoke.

One bright news story in the tremendously exciting world of analytics (slight sarcasm alert) is O’Leary Analytics. An Irish set-up that specialises in running down the online data for companies, brands, events, news stories or anything else that you need measurement for, it’s a perfect example of a service that a few short clicks ago simply wasn’t available, but now can be a frighteningly useful tool. The screengrab above, for instance, details how many people were talking about the festival, and where. This is a small section from the Oxegen blogpost.

“Having analysed the 34,000 conversations, we then extracted the 100 most frequently occurring words displayed in the word cloud below. Following their competition on Twitter, it was no surprise to see Spin1038 feature in the list. The debate surrounding Amanda Brunker’s performance ensured she also made it in to the Top 100, but the artist that led to the most chatter was without question Beyoncé – with more than 2,600 mentions. Coldplay and The Foo Fighters also feature in the word cloud – the tone of which is overwhelmingly positive with words such as “good”, “great”, “fun” and “amazing” all making the top 100.”

It doesn’t take a mental colossus to see how big this service is. We even get it ourselves. And they’ve got some terrific case studies on the site, from the international explosion of interest following ‘that’ slurred Cowen radio interview, to online reaction to ‘that’ Hunky Dorys campaign.

It takes quite a bit to get this writer interested in analytics, but these case studies are so damn interesting to begin with that it adds tremendously to the stories themselves.

We’ll be trying to invite the man behind the analysis, Stephen O’Leary, to come on and give us a 101 on online number crunching for clients.

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