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Everything Digital

Social Analytics Tools That Don’t Suck

I sent this Tweet the other day:

To say that it caused quite a stir would be an understatement: it resulted in a few replies, a couple of calls, quite a few DMs and several emails, ranging from pitches to people sharing their own opinions, recommendations, worries and more.

I should really explain what I meant by that Tweet.

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Keyword Searching vs. Hashtag Searching

A lot of social listening tools out there have clever ways of monitoring hashtags: Synthesio, for instance, has a special search field for any hashtags you’d like to monitor; Brandwatch has a dedicated Boolean operator for hashtags (“hashtags:”). Even Twitter lets you search for hashtags separately from keywords when you’re using its Advanced Search.

Unfortunately, not a lot of platforms out there are clear on the implications and differences between searching for a keyword vs. a hashtag. Besides, they don’t always explain why searching for the hashtag “#apple”, the keyword “apple” and “#apple” as a keyword may bring you different results.

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Impressions ≠ Reach

I wrote about Twitter reach and impressions a couple of years ago (here). That was before Twitter revamped their Analytics dashboard. That was before Twitter gave us a good amount of metrics. Twitter analytics evolved considerably in those 2 years, but one thing seems to remain: the confusion between reach and impression. There is a difference between the two metrics, but a lot of articles, posts and social tools seem to confuse the two.

I was recently catching up on my Feedbin inbox and I came across this post on the Buffer Social blog: “how to create a social media report and explain it to your boss or client”, a post I definitely recommend reading.

I then stumbled upon this:

“Reach can sometimes be a bit of a tricky term. Facebook uses it to refer to the number of people who see a post. Twitter calls the same thing Impressions.

Sure, both reach and impressions refer to your exposure, be it your content exposure, or profile exposure. Still, they are not the same thing.

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Disrupt Enterprise Reviews

TrustRadius released a buyer’s guide to enterprise social media management software just recently, and it’s pure gold: lots of great recommendations and great insights from those who use the tools named in the report. It’s also nice to see some of my old-time favourite vendors on the map, like Hootsuite and Simply Measured being named Top Rated Social Media Management tools. That’s amazing.

I also noticed something quite interesting in this report: look at the following picture from TrustRadius…

Enterprise Social Media Management Software TrustMap

You can see long-standing vendors like Radian 6, Attensity and Oracle scoring pretty low, and surprisingly Adobe Social scored the lowest. This may come as a surprise to you especially if you’re familiar with the Forrester Wave report, that listed Adobe as “a strong performer” in the list of digital platforms (although this was not just for Adobe Social but for the entire Adobe Marketing Cloud). Gartner also recognised Adobe as “a leader in the 2014 “Magic Quadrant for Digital Marketing Hubs” report” (which you can find here).

So, who got it wrong – the well-known and respected independent reviewers (e.g. Forrester, Gartner), or the latest consumer reviews sites like G2 Crowd and TrustRadius? And is TrustRadius on to something bigger than what it’s selling?

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What’s the best tool for Web Analytics?

There’s a long list of web analytics tools available out there: some are free, others come at a price; some are basic and they do the job just right, while others take a 360-degree approach and offer a lot more than just web analytics.

When people ask me for advice on which web analytics tool to go for, I always tell them this: the best web analytics tool doesn’t exist, but what does exist is at least one tool out there that’s perfect for you, and ultimately it really depends on what you want/need it to do.

Having said that, I usually recommend one the following three tools:

  • Google Analytics
  • Adobe Analytics
  • GoSquared

Here’s why I recommend these tools, and why I’m fairly certain that one of these is a good fit for you – starting with Google Analytics.

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Google Search and Knowledge Graph Get More Social

This just in: Google’s Knowledge Graph now shows social profiles for brands. In other words, the card you see on the right hand side when you Google a brand (the one that shows your logo, information from Wikipedia and other “rich information”) will now show links to our social profiles.

google knowledge graph

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2014 Year in Review

Now that we’re in the new year, it’s time for me to look back at the main highlights of 2014 – on this blog and outside it. Looking back to look forward, right?

I jotted down a few highlights from the past year, and that quickly turned into quite a few lists… So, in the interest of time and brevity, I present to you my top highlights from 2014.

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Blinkbox, Chrome and Silverlight

Due to a recent update to Google Chrome, it is no longer possible to stream video on sites that rely on the Microsoft Silverlight plugin using Chrome for Mac.

If you’re a user of video streaming sites like Netflix then you probably already know about this. Blinkbox have been affected by this change too, and I found out from this email I received not so long ago:

blinkbox silverlight email

Me being me, I had to dig deeper to see what was really going on and make a quick analysis. (Because, why not?)

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A Shift In The Market

Simply Measured announced their latest integration earlier this week:

Why Is This a Big Deal?

Sure, this isn’t the first time that solutions are merging or integrating with each other. To understand why this is such a big deal, we need to understand why such a move makes so much sense.

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