Twingly is heading to SXSW!

 

austin
Austin

Everyone at Twingly is going to SXSW in Austin, March 9-15. If you would like to get access to more blogs in Japan or news articles in Italy, discuss the challenges in collecting social data globally or talk about the current consolidation in the media monitoring industry, please let us know and we can meet up for a chat.

Twingly has moved on from being the leading supplier of global blog data, to now also include one of the strongest coverage of forum, news as well as other social data.

We hope to see you in Austin!

For meetings, please just send us a note.

The Grace of Latin Beauty Blogs

Beauty is important in every culture, especially in the Latin one. Latinas go out of their way to make themselves muylindas (very beautiful), taking their time to do their hair, nails and makeup. Here are three popular Latin beauty bloggers from around the world to give you a glimpse into how each one perceives beauty, and the advice they give to readers.

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Susana Chavez, Beauty Airlines

Beauty Airlines

Susana Chavez has worked as a beauty editor for the last 20 years. Her blog, Beauty Airlines, is part of Vogue Portugal, where she has worked for the last 12 years, writing about cosmetics and perfume.

In her posts, Susana shares the behind-the-scenes daily life of a beauty editor who travels the world to interview experts and review the latest products.

In an exclusive interview with Twingly, Susana shared with us her thoughts on blogging.

What was your motivation for starting the blog?
As a Beauty Editor for Vogue, I live surrounded by new beauty products, attend press-launches and travel extensively for beauty events. Not all of this fits in my Vogue Beauty pages, so I started Beauty Airlines to share a bit of the journey in my Beauty Editor life. I love traveling and airplanes, so it’s also a good place to share my geekiness.

What are the biggest advantage/disadvantage of being a blog writer?
Advantage, I’d say are to be able to share the backstage daily life of my work. Disadvantage is that it takes up much more time than anyone imagined!

Have you collaborated with any brands for this blog, and what was the purpose?
No, I haven’t. The blog is not monetized. I’ve done a few giveaways just to share good things with my readers, but no commercial associations.

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Jai Correa, Mami’s Time Out

Mami’s Time Out

Many beauty bloggers focus on the latest makeup brands and secrets, the problem is that makeup can be expensive, and not all the readers can afford to purchase it. Jai Correa, a Dominican blogger, realizes that, and addresses it in her blog Mami’s Time Out. Writing primarily for moms, she offers her advice for ways to look hermosa (beautiful) without breaking the bank. As she writes on her blog, “I love a bargain as much as I love a good lipstick.”

Mami’s Time Out is a one-stop-shop for everything having to do with beauty. She gives tips on how her readers can get the look of their favorite celebrities, like when she gave advice on achieving an ombre hairstyle, like her favorite telenovela star, Maite Perroni.

She works with makeup and beauty brands, such as Love & Glamour (Jennifer Lopez’s fragrance), Neutrogena, Covergirl and Pop Sugar.

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Rocio Isabel, RisasRizos

RisasRizos

Twenty-eight year old Rocio Isabel Mora started sharing hair beauty secrets on her YouTube channel in 2014, which has now reached over 40,000 subscribers, whom she calls “Curlfriends and Rizadas,” all over the world. In her videos, Rocio shares her knowledge about managing curly hair.

However, as hair is not her only passion, she started the blog RisasRizos. Living in New Orleans in the US, Rocio’s parents are from Mexico and Honduras, which is why you can find some Spanglish (Spanish and English) in her blog. In writing her posts, Rocio works with brands such as Caress, Aveeno and Bioré.

Rocio started her career as a local television show host on the Spanish channel Telemundo. She is a regular contributor for NaturallyCurly and Being Latino.

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If you need access to beauty blogs and global blog data, you can find everything you need at Twingly.com

By Renata Ilitsky

The Rich Taste of US Food Blogs

Most countries are known for their regional cuisines; Italians love their pasta, France is known for escargots and India is famous for curry. However, there is no real consensus on what American food is. Is it hot dogs, apple pie or hamburgers? We interviewed three American food bloggers so you can decide for yourself.

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Dan bing

Food-verse

Tesia Kuh’s blog Food-verse is the perfect example of what Americans eat, a smorgasbord of food from around the world. Her blog may scare some newbie cooks away with fancy titles, such as ghormeh sabzi, dan bing, and garlic soy soba noodles, but the names are just representatives of their host regions, which are the Middle East, Taiwan, and Japan.

In an exclusive interview, she Tesia, who works for Wolfgang Puck Worldwide, shared her motivation for starting the blog: “I started blogging first through photos on Instagram. I wanted to show what I made at home and when I got such a positive response, eventually I wanted to tell others how they can make it for themselves.”

What’s special about this blog is that Tesia shares a little bit about herself in each recipe, such as where she got the idea, how she came to make the dish, etc. Regarding dan bing (Taiwanese egg roles), she wrote, “It reminded me of a Korean rolled omelet side dish I grew up eating but with an added crepe! Egg, crepe, Asian street food that you can eat with your hands! Whenever utensils are optional I can hardly contain my excitement.” Regarding the garlic soy soba noodles, she shared: ‘This was my I’m too lazy to cook, too lazy to go out and get food but hungry for something delicious – meal experiment that turned out so well I made it again the very next day.”

The Perfect Steak
The Perfect Steak

Grillocracy

Americans are known for their love of meat, particularly barbeque. Grillocrazy serves to meat-lovers around the country, with practical tips, recipes and advice on grilling and barbecuing.

Written by Clint Cantwell, called the “backyard griller on steroids” this grillmaster wears many hats! He is the Editor of Grillocracy and Kingsford, video content director of AmazingRibs.com, pitmaster of Smoke in da Eye competition barbecue and grilling team, and winner of Travel Channel’s “American Grilled.” He has recurring grilling segments on both CNN’s HLN and WREG-TV. It’s safe to say that Clint knows his meat!

Why does he blog?

“Being a blogger allows me to scratch my creative itch, creating countless out-of-the-box recipes for a global audience of grilling fans. The only disadvantage is the time involved in creating new content on a consistent basis.”

His recipes are carefully categorized in easy to find sections, such as grilling beef, grilling poultry, grilling fruits and vegetables, and grilling dessert (yes, you read that correctly). What’s unique about Clint’s food blog is that he doesn’t just share recipes, but provides advice on the entire grilling and barbecuing experience. For example, he has a “How To” section where he shares tips on using spices, adjusting smoking times and smoking turkeys. He even has a link to reviews on different grills and smokers.

Tasty Breakfast
Tasty Breakfast

Aluminum Foiled Kitchen

Many Americans are on the health trend diet, as evidenced by this young blogger, Judith Rontal. At just 20-years-old, she lost 60 pounds by changing her diet and lifestyle, which she shares on her blog Aluminum Foiled Kitchen. Living in Washington, D.C., Judith blogs about local cooking as well as cooking when she travels.

Her blog is fun and original; she doesn’t title her blog posts simply by the name of the dish, but uses titles such as: “When You Have 20 Pounds of Peaches…”, “What I should Eat for Breakfast Today,” and “Not My Mom’s Apple Cake.”

What was your motivation for starting the blog?

“I started the blog as a way to share what I was making with friends and family (beyond texts and Snapchat). I’ve always loved baking and cooking and discovered the world of food blogging when I started expanding my knowledge in the kitchen and wanted to get some inspiration. I’m an avid reader of Smitten Kitchen and one of my favorite parts of her site is the comment section under her recipes – she responds to so many questions! I’ve learned from her and want to be able to help others out in the same way she has helped me.”

“My blog was started as something for me, so I like that its message is intimate and very personal. I hope to keep that as I share it with people who I don’t know – hopefully it’ll be a way for them to feel like they get a sense of who I am as a person without meeting me!”

From ethnic dishes to barbecue and healthy options, Americans love a variety of food.

If you need access to food blogs and global blog data, you can find everything you need at Twingly.com

By Renata Ilitsky

Three Fashion Blogs From Around the World

NY Fashion Week opens today and fashion means many things to different people. To some, dressing fashionably means following the latest styles from world-known brands, such as Chanel, Dior and Gucci. To others, fashion means expressing their individuality and personal sense of style. Although fashion varies from person to person, there are specific fashion trends that permeate entire countries. Here we take a look at three fashion blogs from around the world – China, Sweden and Canada.

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Elle is not afraid to be bold in her outfit selections. Just take a look at this colorful outfit from Cats Brothers. Wearing this in many parts of the world would likely result in curious looks from strangers, but it may be just right for the daring and often whimsical Asian fashion, which always pushes the edge!

China – Elle Lee

ElleIconLee is a blog by Elle Lee, who lives in Hong Kong. An ex-model herself, she writes about fashion and lifestyle, as well as vlogging on YouTube and writing for fashion columns on several websites.

Elle’s unique angles is that she writes in English and Chinese, and shares looks with both international and regional inspirations with her readers. In an interview with Sassy Hong Kong, Elle describes her style as “less is more,” stating that she likes “designs that are clean, well-made and stand the test of time.”

“Imagine a mash-up between the craftsmanship of Oscar de la Renta, the feminine subtlety of Lanvin, the uniqueness of Maison Martin Margiela and the creativity of Nicholas Kirkwood – mix those with my East meets West background and you get an idea of my personal style,” Elle explained.

We got an exclusive interview with Elle about her blogging:

What was your motivation for starting the blog?

I started my first blog when I was 10-years-old, but it was more of a digital platform to record my life for my family and friends as I was living away from home. Then social media started and I was getting a lot of questions regarding what I was wearing, using etc. So I thought I should start a blog and point everyone there for a more detailed answer.

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For a great example of how Elle mixes high fashion with everyday trends from around the world, check out this photo, where she paired a LABORON evening gown with a Mickey Mouse-shaped popcorn case she used as a clutch at Shanghai Fashion Week!

What are the biggest advantages/disadvantages of being a blogger?

A lot of influencers now only work on social media platforms with few words and strong images, that’s the trend. Writing a blog is very time consuming, especially since I still take care of my social platforms in both Chinese and English. However, I still feel like keeping the blog running as it’s more like a core of what I keep everything on, and people could search and look up content even after 10 or 20 years, which might not be easy to do on social media platforms.

How does it work with the different languages on your blog?

My blog is in both Chinese and English, but I don’t translate them, I write them differently as no language can be expressed in the same way. It’s very time consuming, but I believe it gives readers in Chinese and English a better reading experience. Some readers even use my blog as a way to learn English and Chinese, which I feel is pretty awesome!

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Fanny shares the outfits she wears in her daily life, such as this high-waisted swimsuit from H&M and jean shorts from Melrose market in LA she wore in Greece. She doesn’t only focus on high couture, but shares inspirational ideas for urban, sporty and everyday looks just perfect for active Swedes.

Sweden – Fanny Lyckman

Fanny Lyckman is a Swedish fashion expert. At just 25-years-old, Fanny has created a name for herself in the fashion world. She is not only an award-nominated fashion blogger, but has created a nail polish line in collaboration with NCLA, and designed two collections with the brand Nelly. She is currently working on a fashion line, which she hopes to release this fall.

Although Fanny is a Swedish blogger, thousands of people around the world follow her website and Instagram account. In an interview with Cosmopolitan, Fanny says that she gets her style inspiration from following different people on Tumblr. Online, Fanny likes to shop on Asos; as far as physical stores, she prefers Zara, Urban Outfitters, Beyond Retro, Topshop, H&M and River Island. She shares that she can’t live without her jean shorts, and would never be caught in tax-me heels.

Canada – Jen Tam

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Jen not only posts photos of outfits and names of the designers, but also highlights how the clothes can alter the way the body appears. “The off-the-shoulder crop top from Giulietta and wide-legged, high-waisted Vionnet pants are definitely works of art on their own, but the combined proportions did wonders to flatter my shape and made me seem about six feet tall,” she wrote about this outfit.

Her Waise Choice is a blog by Canadian writer, Jen Tam. Her blog’s motto is that everyone can be stylish without looking down on others or being a slave to fashion. Canadians are known for being friendly and approachable, an attitude Jen strongly believes should be incorporated into fashion, which should be “accessible and not intimidating.” Since 2010, Jen has tried to inspire her readers, everyday women, to dress with approachable style that fits in with Canadian culture.

Jen is not afraid to be brutally honest, which undoubtedly appeals to her readers. For example, in a recent post, she shared: “I’m often still not totally happy with the way a certain piece fits, or I’ll wish I could change a detail or two about an overall look. It’s quite rare for an outfit to be executed in a way where I feel like all the elements really work.”

In a recent interview with Top 100 Style, Jen shares her style rules.

What’s one go-to piece every woman should own?

The perfect pair of black jeans.

Dress up or dress down?

I’ve always been a believer of being a little more dressed up but lately I’ve been more inclined to be comfortable. I think this has something to do with the fact that my style has been evolving into a slightly edgier vibe in the last year or two.

What’s one fashion rule you’re proud of breaking?

No white after Labor day—white is a great tone to wear year round and I especially love white on white winter wear!

If you need access to fashion blogs and global blog data, you can find everything you need at Twingly.com

By Renata Ilitsky

How Leonardo helps us shape the future of social data

Leonardo_blogFor every sprint we fight with the priorities to improve our services and products as much as possible for a greater value. Sometimes however you might get stuck in priorities that limit creativity and you might lose track of where you are heading.

So, we introduced Leonardo.

Inspired by Google’s “20% time” we launched Leonardo, for the developers to spend 20% of their work time on future projects that are not included in regular planning. However, they could only choose among a certain number of projects in social data, that all were on our future road map. It could be features, new products, improvements to our systems etc.

They were free to approach the project in any way they liked as long as they constantly logged what they did, so everyone could follow the work, give input or continue the work if needed further on. They could go at it alone or together with someone else.

The purpose is to give the developers more creative freedom, full responsibility at the start of a project that they have selected and a picture of the different parts of our distant future. At the same time it gives us all a better detailed idea of our challenges ahead which helps us prioritize among new projects.

After the team was presented to Leonardo and the projects to choose from (four times more projects than team members), they got three days to choose their first project. Some chose project almost unwillingly and we even had to schedule time in our regular planning for everyone to get started.

Now after 6 months, we are still not fully embracing Leonardo. The big challenge for probably any team is to really set aside 20% of the work time on regular basis. Daily and weekly priorities are made for a reason and that knowledge in relation to available hours sometimes dims the view.

A few projects have come as far as it is possible under Leonardo and waiting to be included in the regular planning, while some have temporarily been abandoned for the choice of other projects. Projects with longer runways to get off the ground have seemed a bit more difficult to get attention, probably because they clash even harder with the short-term of daily priorities.

In our struggle for a more improved effect, the picture of the future painted by our Leonardo is still important every week to keep us on the right track and to see future synergies. We will continue to evaluate and develop Leonardo to generate more value in the future of social data.

If you are running similar projects, please share your experiences and don’t hesitate to let us know if you have any questions or thoughts about ours.

Why the name Leonardo? Well, Leonardo da Vinci was a genius ahead of his time…

By Pontus Edenberg

If you need access to local or global blog data, you can find everything you need at Twingly.com

“In the next 5 years there will be more dependence on social media intelligence, which means that the accuracy and speed of analysis will increase”

Mohamed Abdel-Mottaleb - original
Mohamed Abdel-Mottaleb

Interview with Mohamed Abdel-Mottaleb, CEO of Trendak, a social media intelligence company in Egypt

Hi Mohamed, what is your background and what is included in your current role at Trendak?

My background is in nanotechnology; the idea of big data and collecting information regarding nanotechnology in the Middle East is what started me in this field. That eventually got me working with a team to conduct Arabic text analysis and collecting information. We moved from there step by step into social media in the end of 2011.

I am responsible for the day-to-day operations and working with the team to set the strategy for the company and for the products that we sell. I help with sales when the size of the deal allows for me to move around. In addition, I am responsible for looking at the competition and doing business development as well.

What differs Trendak from other social media intelligence companies in Egypt and the MENA-region?

I believe our technology is better than that of many of the competitors we have. Our accuracy in analysis and range of channels that we monitor and analyze is bigger than better than our competitors.

How does your set-up of employees look like and do you work with partners in different parts of the world?

We have 31 employees, 40 percent of which are female. We have a young workforce, with the average age being 31; in fact, the majority of our staff are under 30. Most of the team has a technology background either in software engineering or in data science. The business team has a lot of experience in sales and in running companies. Collectively, we have 120 years of experience between the top management and the sales and the business development team.

We have technology partners in other parts of the world. We use DataSift, and have partnered with Gnip for the last two years. We also have resellers in Europe and in other parts of the Middle East.

Which type of companies benefit from your services?

Marketing companies, fast-moving consumer goods (FMCGs) and media channels. When Ramadan finished recently we did a lot of analysis on the viewership, the actors and television shows that happened during that time, and what the response of the people during the month of Ramadan, a high season for us, was.

What are your greatest challenges ahead at Trendak when it comes to developing your offer?

A lot of analysis is required to understand the clientele of our clients. FMCGs or brands need to understand their clientele more, but there are restrictions on understanding that, even in aggregate form. We are happy with the PYLON offering from Facebook to segment the audience we are looking at, yet many other channels aren’t that easy due to restrictions on access to data.

What other challenges do you face in your market?

The biggest challenge we sometimes have with clients in the Middle East, especially international brands, is that they come with a set of specific providers for analysis that would work in Europe or in the United States or Canada, but they don’t have the capabilities to understand the Arabic market. Unfortunately, international brands have worldwide contracts with these companies, so the competition for us with international is quite strong. Many local companies face the problem in the region that they cannot have deep insights, but they are tied into long-term contracts with their providers, which is a big challenge for an area like ours.

Do you have any specific plans to expand your business in the near future, like new markets or products?

Yes we are working very aggressively to enter the worldwide market, specifically Europe. Our biggest advantage is the Arabic language; our accuracy is quite high, and that is where we excel. We want to offer this to countries with a high Arabic speaking audience.

We want to develop, and started developing, offerings in languages that have not gotten enough attention from other companies, such as languages in Africa and the Far East.

How did the Arab Spring change the conception of social media in Egypt and the MENA-region?

I think the effect of the Arab Spring was not only on Africa and the Middle East region, but worldwide. It was one of first times that social media enabled and concretely demonstrated its influence on real life and on the public. Until that point, most of the world was talking about it as a virtual world, and a small sample of the real life audience. The Arab Spring showed that not to be true, that it’s more penetrated, and is a powerful tool to communicate. One of social media’s most important features is being able to provide alternative news sources in almost near real time. This is a tremendous power, and the Arab Spring made everyone understand the importance and effect of social media.

Which social platforms are currently most important for your customers?

This depends on the region of the country you’re talking about; Twitter and Instagram in the Gulf area, Facebook in Africa. We believe that Snapchat and Telegram are also becoming much more important, especially in the regions where the young population is a significant part of the entire population, like in Egypt, where 40 percent of the population is under 25.

Which social platform do you see having the most potential in the future?

That’s not a simple question, but I believe Instagram has a bright future. I believe that one of the two, Snapchat or Telegram, will grow more and more.

Are there any social platforms that are closed today that you would be interested in tapping into for monitoring that would benefit your customers?

Snapchat, as the amount of information that we can access is not that available.

What kind of data or media that you do not have monitoring on today, can be interesting in the future?

Photos, especially photos on Facebook, as the amount of information provided with the photos is not enough. Having access to more of that information would be very interesting for us.

Are there specific or typical needs in the Arabic market for social media monitoring that you think differs from rest of the world in general?

Understanding of the Arabic language and the level of detail you need to be able to understand the text is different from other parts of the world, and it’s not that simple to automate the understanding of this language. Meta data on that information is not sufficient on its own to provide deep insights that clients would like to see.

How do you think the media monitoring and social intelligence industry will change in the next five years?

I think there will be more dependence on it, which means that the accuracy and speed of analysis will increase. The depth of analysis will also increase and insights drawn from it will be instrumental for industries. Again, in an area where the population is quite young, social media will play a more important role than in other parts of the world.

By Renata Ilitsky

“Other global social media monitoring services failed in Brazil because they didn’t understand what kind of customer service our clients require”

Mauricio Brentano
Mauricio Brentano

Interview with Mauricio Brentano, COO of Seekr, a social journey company in Brazil

Hi Mauricio, what is your background and what is included in your current role at Seekr?

My degree is in the area of information systems, so I have a background in technology. My current role at Seekr is COO, and I am responsible for everything having to do with operations in the company, such as technology and customer success. Essentially, the tech team develops and maintains the product, and the customer success team is responsible for contacting and training the clients who will use our platform, as well as helping to fix the technological issues that come up when they use our product.

What differs Seekr from other social media intelligence companies in Brazil?

Seekr is much more than just a social media intelligence company. We believe in a process that we call “Social Journey,” which means that we understand that engagement in social media involves four steps, which are:
1. Listening/Monitoring – We have to find/identify data that provides insights and helps our clients solve problems.
2. Solving the Problem – We offer applications that are useful for customer service on social media. Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, as well as email and chat, all have their problems; customers have questions and complaints in these channels and Seekr helps our clients to solve them.
3. Engaging – After solving problems, the company has to make the clients happy. We offer features like publications, which enable our clients to communicate with their clients better and we have social CRM so our clients can see a 360- degree field of their customers.
4. Analyzing – After completing the previous steps, it is important to understand what worked and what has to be improved. For this purpose, we have more than 100 reports, which help them to analyze this entire process.

We are not just a social media intelligence company, it’s just the first step, but we are more complete than that. We have an entire strategy process about how we engage the clients and solve their problems, making them happy.

Which type of companies benefit from your services?

We don’t have a specific type of company that benefits from our services; our clients are in different kinds of industries, such as telecommunications, insurance, television, drink/food, as well as politicians. Everyone wants to make decisions driven by data, and everyone wants to improve their customer care. Any company can use our monitoring platform to get insights on what’s happening in their market and improve their customer care.

What are your greatest challenges ahead at Seekr when it comes to developing your offer?

The biggest challenge is the dynamics of the market, and the fact that it constantly changes as people need more information. It’s really hard keeping up to date with what happens in the market and technology. We have to follow the evolution of the market and social media, and what people want to do with social media.

Do you have any specific plans to expand your business in the near future, like new markets or products?

Next year we are planning to release Spanish and English versions, which we are developing for the global market.

In our products, we want to bring more intelligence about analyzed data and more information to help our clients make informed decisions; as well, we aim to increase our channels of providing customer service.

Can you give specific examples where one or more of your clients have made changes in their communication, organization or similar, based on the information or analysis you provided?

We helped a Brazilian telecommunication company implement a strategy that allowed all stakeholders and responsible parties to receive an email alert when a relevant person with a lot of followers and social presence said something negative about their brand. By alerting these individuals, the company was able to manage crises better and faster.

You have recently moved more from collecting data yourself to relying on external suppliers. What have you found most challenging in this transition and why?

We realize that it’s a great effort to collect data ourselves, and some of that data isn’t part of our core service; therefore, we hired an external supplier to provide reliable data. The most challenging aspect of working with a supplier is understanding what kind of data they bring, what the quality of the data is, how it will help us, and how much it costs. Then, we have to make the decision if it is better to keep the data here or to have a supplier that we pay.

Which social platforms are the most important for your Brazilian customers?

Facebook is important, and Twitter sees a lot of interaction between people and brands. Instagram, YouTube and ReclameAqui, which is specific to Brazil, and means “complain here” in Portuguese, are also highly used.

Which social platform do you see having the most potential in the future?

That’s a hard question; I think Facebook will lose users because it’s too global. I think that social media platforms will become more specific, like TripAdvisor for traveling, YouTube for videos, Instagram for photos, etc.

Three years ago, we didn’t have all the platforms we have now; that is why it’s so hard to have any forecast for the future in this market.

Are there any social platforms that are closed today that you would be interested in tapping into for monitoring that would benefit your customers?

I would be interested in Facebook opening their API about public data, which they closed in April of 2015. A lot of customers that made data decisions based on this platform couldn’t do that anymore. Even using companies that sell Facebook data is not sufficient because it’s not in raw mode, but in aggregate mode. We can’t give reports that so and so posted this, just anonymous identifying data, such as the location and gender of the person.

Are there specific or typical needs in the Brazilian market for social media monitoring that you think differs from rest of South America or the world in general?

Other global social media monitoring services, such as Hootsuite, failed in Brazil because they didn’t understand what kind of customer service our clients require. Our Brazilian clients like us to treat them with a “warm” feeling. We prioritize keeping our clients happy by getting in touch with them and becoming close with them, which they like. This limits other companies from coming into Brazil, as they don’t know how to provide this type of customer care.

How do you think the media monitoring and social intelligence industry will change in the next five years?

It’s really hard to forecast, but social intelligence will change greatly. Artificial intelligence (AI) will have many consequences and provide more information to make decisions. Image recognition, personality insights, relationship extraction, and things that take massive data sets, analyze them and convert raw data into good information to make decisions will benefit from AI.

By Renata Ilitsky

“It would be amazing to get access to Snapchat data and analyze the behaviors”

Jonathan Israelsson_edit
Jonathan Israelsson

Interview with Jonathan Israelsson, CEO of Lissly, a social media monitoring company in Sweden

Hi Jonathan, what is your background and what is included in your current role at Lissly?

During the course of my education, I always felt ambivalent between a career in sports and a more traditional path. While I wrote my master thesis in marketing and communication at Stockholm University, I also worked as a soccer coach for teams ranging from youth groups to the premier league for female players. After a couple of years, I realized that I found it more fulfilling to work in the communication and events field. I was responsible for a meeting facility before joining Lissly, but the choice was easy because I could clearly identify another level of customer value.

In my role as partner and CEO at Lissly, my main responsibility is to motivate and support our six employees in succeeding and reaching their full potential. I also engage in customer care, and I regularly attend meetings with our existing customer base. All members of the Lissly team are involved in sales, which means some of my time is devoted to coordination and support.

What differs Lissly from other media monitoring and social intelligence companies in Scandinavia?

That is a difficult question! When meeting with customers and industry colleagues, it seems apparent that all players have the same type of monitoring sources, which makes the competition fierce. Lissly has chosen to focus on the Nordic market, specifically Sweden and Norway. We consider ourselves a strong brand because we understand how social media works in Sweden. We always strive to provide statistics as a basis for our offerings, and a lot of variables in social media mentions allow us to generate interesting insights using a mix of statistical frameworks and a slight touch of finesse. We always try to adapt to the new demands and changing landscape of the market, which means implementing new channels in our analysis and comparing with existing customer data to maximize the customer’s value.

Which type of companies benefit from your services?

Lissly has a wide range of customers, but we are particularly strong with the Swedish trade unions and employers’ associations. A growing number of them use our analysis to create opinion and measure the effects of their campaigns. Furthermore, we have experience working with customers from all markets, from local daycare for dogs to the largest agencies in Sweden.

You have recently moved more into analysis than just being a media-monitoring platform. Why is that?

Our customers demanded more information and insights than any tool can provide with automated methods. Therefore, we began to develop our analysis offering together with our key customers to provide answers to what they really need to know from their endeavors in social media. We also invented new types of KPIs, which simply were not possible in the platform environment. The feedback from our customers was overwhelmingly positive, and now we are proud to deliver the greatest possible customer value based on the information available in social media.

Can you give specific examples where one or more of your clients have made changes in their communication, organization or similar, based on the information or analysis you provided?

We created an analysis for one of Sweden’s largest coffee producers, and one of the key insights was the identified behaviors of the different demographics. For example, females between the ages of 25 to 45 were prone to share, late at night between 9 and 10PM, what they are baking for the coffee break the next day. This meant that the coffee producer could adjust the marketing and commercials accordingly.

What are your greatest challenges ahead at Lissly, when it comes to serving your customers analysis and develop your offer?

The main challenge is rebranding and creating awareness of our new focus on manual analysis. We are working on communicating these changes and the fact that “Lissly 2.0” is not an update of our tool but rather our core business model. This process is going well, but there are always some potential customers who should realize this sooner rather than later.

All clients have different levels of understanding how social media can be analyzed. Which is the most common misconception that your clients have?

That it’s possible to monitor everything by yourself. It’s possible to get a basic understanding of the situation, but do you really have the time and energy to read everything and understand what the aggregate means? When Lissly applies its expertise and KPIs, it really provides a level of understanding, which is impossible to attain with the traditional tools on the market.

Which social platform do you see has the most potential in the future?

I believe everything related to picture and video will grow. It would be amazing to get access to Snapchat data and analyze the behaviors of one of the largest social media platforms.

Are there any social platforms that are closed today that you would be interested in tapping into for monitoring that would benefit your customers?

There has always been a great demand to monitor the activity on LinkedIn, especially for the B2B customers, which are particularly interested in potential leads and decision makers. This has been impossible with the automated methods available for the monitoring tools, but we have come up with a way to incorporate LinkedIn data in our analysis offering.

What kind of data or media that you do not have monitoring on today, can be interesting in the future?

If I could pick a source to compare to our existing data, it would be Snapchat. The insights would be really interesting for certain markets. We have begun to test the possibilities, but unfortunately only the data from your own account is available, which greatly limits the potential. We are eagerly waiting for the official API, and if it provides a way to collect data, Lissly will be the first in line to implement it in our analysis.

How do you think the media monitoring and social intelligence industry will change in the next five years?

My intuition tells me that everything will be focused on insights. The main focus will be to use all available information to identify the optimal market conditions and key individuals to generate more business. Today, the market is focused on what is being said, but it will shift to what it really means.

By Renata Ilitsky

“AI will be huge in terms of its impact and helpfulness in social media analytics”

Tam Su
Tam Su

Interview with Tam Su, Senior Director of Product at Crimson Hexagon, a social media analytics company with headquarters in Boston, US.

Hi Tam, what is your background and what is included in your current role at Crimson Hexagon?

I have been in tech for about 18 years, having helped start a few. I am currently the senior director of product at Crimson Hexagon. My responsibilities include product design, strategy and user experience.

What differs Crimson Hexagon from other social media analytics platforms?

Great question. Our biggest strength over the other offerings is the strength of our tech platform and the vastness of our data store (the amount of data we store ourselves). Our CTO jokes that we have more public data than anyone on earth, except for the NSA. We have the best analysis platform, and a superior foundation, that is where we lead.

Traditionally, we are weaker on the user experience front, so we have been working hard for the last year and a half to overcome that. Look for exciting announcements from us in the coming months.

You recently received an investment of $20M in Crimson Hexagon; how will that affect your product in the near future?

As mentioned, expect exciting announcements in the next two to three months, as we launch our new offerings. These have less to do with our funding, and more with the fact that we’ve been focused on delivering a world-class user experience.

The funding will accelerate our efforts across the board – across product lines, technology, data sources, and our research pipeline as we get more into deep learning and related AI efforts.

What are your greatest challenges ahead at Crimson Hexagon when it comes to serving your customers analysis and develop your offer?

Great question. The greatest challenges for any company in an accelerated growth stage after a big funding event is the danger of not staying focused on the important stuff. In other words, a lot of companies have the tendency to say – we have the money now to spend on things that we didn’t have before, so let’s go after things that maybe we shouldn’t.

We need to stay laser focused on the most important set of needs for our customers. We continue to concentrate on social listening and analysis, with a special focus around insights derived from that data, as we build a road map to better predict customer behaviors using social data.

As we look to the future, we aim to become more prescriptive in what we can recommend to our clients.

About a year ago you introduced image analysis and logo detection. How well has that played out when it comes to quality and client adaptation?

A year ago we launched a rudimentary product; over the last year, we have sharpened those skills and continue to improve the quality of our product in terms of accuracy, volume, etc. It’s not as widely adapted as we hoped, which has to do with analysis maturity. Image analysis is in the early days; this has become an important source of data, but many of our clients are not at that point yet in terms of their journey in social media analysis.

What are the next steps when it comes to enhancing the use of image analysis?

We have an exciting pipeline, looking at scene, object and facial detection. We can tell if a person is in a restaurant or on a mountain top based on a scene. We can detect not only logos, but also items, allowing us to tell if a Starbucks logo is on a mug or on a can of coffee.

Facial detection now allows us to detect sentiment without having to analyze associated text, which may not even exist. If people smile, we know they’re happy, if they are frowning, we know they are not. Being able to discern sentiment straight from the image is huge.

How do you think the development in AI will affect the social media analytics business?

It will be huge in terms of its impact and helpfulness; it’s going to impact a number of areas, ranging from the analysis itself to certain recommendations that we may be able to offer our users. For example, this type of data is best paired with these types of charts. Another example is the idea of being able to recommend actions based on what we see. We can say that this tweet from an influencer is likely to be further amplified with certain promotional; if you promote it, it will likely be amplified by 10 times than what it is now. To be able to predict that and make recommendations is huge.

Another frontier is looking at data information and data ingestion, we are thinking about proprietary data and how AI can help us ingest proprietary corporate data, like chat logs, more efficiently, and be able to then sort through that data, make sense of it, and analyze it more effectively.

Which social platforms do you see having the most potential in the future?

We are very bullish on Tumblr, the third largest network by active users. We have a partnership with them, where we get the entire firehose. We are very excited to see their active user growth trends, and where the entire network will go.

Beyond that, Twitter and Instagram will continue to have bright futures. We are partners with Twitter, and have access to all their data. Instagram is challenging because of their limited API, but hopefully that will change.

Are there any social platforms that are closed today that you would be interested in tapping into for monitoring that would benefit your customers?

Instagram and Facebook are headaches for all of us. We all would like to know what is going on inside Facebook, with respect to the privacy of Facebook’s users. It would be great to get a greater peek in than what we are able to with current channels.

What kind of data, that you would need to do even better analysis, is the hardest to get hold of?

Facebook and Instagram; beyond that, we are curious about the various messaging apps, such as Snapchat, because our clients are becoming curious about them. We would love to get behind the curtains there, with respect to privacy restrictions, to understand what people are talking about and care about.

What kind of data or media that you do not have monitoring on today, can be interesting in the future?

The biggest thing in that regard is working on making our ability to work with proprietary corporate data more robust. We currently have an ingestion mechanism that works. Making it more open and robust so companies can gain greater value is a goal.

How do you think the media monitoring and social media analytics industry will change in the next five years?

The next five years will be very exciting for the whole industry as it grows and matures. A lot of unknowns will be shaken out of the system. Perhaps the biggest change is the ability for platforms leveraging AI to predict scenarios and outcomes in order to prescribe and recommend actions. So, in the next five years we should see that technology developing and maturing in a more visible way.

By Renata Ilitsky

Easier to tap into the global colorful blogosphere

Multi-Ethnic Group Taking a Selfie at Holi Festival
Colorful groupie

We have now made it a lot easier for you to access the world’s biggest pool of active blogs.

Just sign up on our site and instantly receive an API key that gives you access to more than 6 million active blogs and their posts. We also take pride in adding 15,000 new active blogs every day, which is important due to the high turnover in the blogosphere.

We know that you want to get started swiftly in retrieving blog data for your evaluation and use, and we have therefore recently developed API clients in the most common programming languages.

The blogs are divided by spoken languages and they are all assigned a blog rank, based on how influential they are in the colorful blogosphere.

For you to be able to compare your current coverage of blog data, we have made our coverage in the major languages publicly available. Just let us know if you need any input regarding coverage in other languages.

So if you are looking to extend your current coverage of blogs, get your API key today and start exploring. 🙂

By Pontus Edenberg