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Social data gives publishers advantage, 24/7 insight into audience

One of the challenges of the digital reality publishers face on a daily basis is insight into their audiences. At a FIPP London session today, Steffen Konrath, founder and CEO of Liquid Newsroom detailed how audience insight can aid publishers using social data.

For those looking to launch new products or events, risk is a huge problem. Will there be an audience for the product, for the event, for the magazine? Does anyone talk about the topic? Will anyone come to the event?

“There’s risk in the beginning,” Konrath explained, “because you don’t know if the audience will love the new product. And this is something that is really scary when starting new events.”

However, Konrath uses technology to graph social networks. Visualisations help him help publishers understand how people communicate with each other, what they talk about, what’s trending and whether they are a homogeneous or heterogeneous group. That kind of analysis helps address if publishers are able to target the whole market they’re aiming for, or just some of it.

As Konrath explained, data has immense capacity to tell stories. This type of insight can help brands understand whether to partner with sponsors, or how big a potential audience is.

Konrath explained that he uses Twitter to graph interest areas. “It’s interests that connect us as people,” he said. “So, understanding what interests connect people gives publishers an understanding of who is interested in topic areas.”

For example, Konrath was approached by a company in Munich to organise and event, asking him how to get through to an audience interested in their subject. “We did a bio-search on Twitter, to find people who were interested, and found 300,000 people related in some way, to the subject.”

With a market potential of 300,000, the company wanted a targeted following of 20,000.  It happened organically within a year.

The next step for Konrath was to discover what types of content worked, what got traction on networks, and which particular networks in specific.

“If you know what kind of information is trending, you know how to target it. You can editorialise around it. You can write about it, to use to build audience and get page views,” Konrath said.

Konrath and Liquid Newsroom use data visualization to understand what kind of content tracks well on various social networks. “To see who’s talking about what you want to publish,” he said. “And you know when those people are online, which means you can get in touch with them.”

Using data to graph, map, track and further utilise social networks is beneficial for media. With it, publishers are able to measure the size, demographics, geographic location and volume of potential audiences. The competitive advantage of data helps lower the risk before events and product launches.

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