Aug

The Advantage of Social Engagement for Business, in Simple Words

                                                   

Much is being said about social networks and their importance for businesses. The amount of analysis, explanations, and advice keeps on growing, while the matter is being investigated from every possible angle, real and imaginary.  

As for me, the need for businesses to market and sell on social can be explained by a simple argument.

Here it is.

The principle advantage of social networks for a business over other mediums is in the social networks’ potential to build trust. Traditional marketing mediums, such as TV, newspapers, internet, radio, etc. are not designed to build trust. They are information channels, or scaling vehicles, or sales means, but their primary goal is not to build trust. Social networks, on the other hand, are exactly this - a trust building tools.

And herein lies their biggest advantage in today’s market. The endless variety of options consumers have and the ever growing dissatisfaction with traditional aggressive marketing methods, such as commercials or banners, means that creating trust between businesses and their audiences is now the most efficient way to attract customers. The way that guarantees long-term sustainability and growth.

This is, simply put, the reason for businesses to embrace the social.

 

Interested in reading more? Check out our other blogs:

Easy Yet Untapped Revenue Channel for Hotels Worldwide

There are many travelers looking for hotels and places to stay on social web. Every day.

Take Twitter, for example:

 

Or this:



People are genuinely looking for help. Surprisingly though only few are getting it. According to nmodes data less than 12% of Twitter travel  requests are being answered. The rest - lost opportunities for hotels and businesses in the hospitality industry.  

 And how big is this opportunity anyway?

nmodes Twitter data shows that every 15 min somebody expresses intent of going to, or visiting New York. Most of these travelers need a place to stay there.

Every 33 min - intent of traveling to London.

Every 54 min - intent of traveling to Paris.

We started Twitter recommendation service @nmodesHelps and were encouranged by the results. 72% of those that received our travel recommendations reacted by thanking us and expressing their gratitude. This reinforced our assumption that people seek travel advice on Twitter, accept it as an instant value, and are prepared to act upon it.

The hotels that are ready to move fast to monetize this opportunity will benefit the most.

 

READ MORE

Towards smarter data - accuracy and precision

                                                   

There is a huge amount of information out there. And it is growing. To make it efficient and increase our competitive advantage we need to evolve and start using information in a smart way, by concentrating on data that drives business value because it is accurate, actionable, and agile. Accuracy is an important measure that determines the quality of data processing solutions.

How accuracy is calculated?

It is easy to do with structured data, because the requirements are formalizable. It is less obvious with unstructured data, e.g. a stream of social feeds, or any data set that involves natural language. Indeed, the sentences of natural language are subject to multiple interpretations, and therefore allow a degree of subjectivity. For example, should a sentence ‘I haven’t been on a sea cruise for a long time’ be qualified for a data set of people interested in going on a cruise? Both answers, yes and no, seem valid.

In these cases an argument was put forward endorsing a consensus approach which polls data providers is the best way to judge data accuracy. This approach essentially claims that attributes with the highest consensus across data providers is the most accurate.

At nmodes we deal with unstructured data all the time because we process natural language messages, primarily from social networks. We do not favor this simplistic approach, as it is considered biased, inviting people to make assumptions based on what they already believe to be true, and making no distinction between precision and accuracy. Obviously the difference is that precision measures what you got right, and accuracy measures both what you got right and what you got wrong. Accuracy is a more inclusive and therefore more valuable characteristic.

Our approach is

a) to validate data against third party independent sources (typically of academic origin) that contain trusted sets and reliable demography. Validating nmodes data against third party sources allows us to verify that our data achieves the greatest possible balance of scale and accuracy.

b) to enrich upon the existing test sets by purposefully including examples ambiguous in meaning and intent, and providing additional levels of categorization to cover these examples.

Accuracy is becoming important when businesses move from rudimentary data use, typical of the first Big Data years, to a more measured and careful approach of today. Understanding how it is calculated and the value it brings helps in achieving long-term sustainability and success.

 

READ MORE