Ben Dickie, a research analyst with Info-Tech Research Group (www.infotech.com), has a fitting way of describing social analytics. Namely, he dubs it “the
discipline of tapping into the world’s largest focus group, structuring the data in a way that it makes sense, and then analyzing the data to provide business
decision makers with a framework for making actionable decisions based on that data.” The “world’s largest focus group” Dickie refers to consists of consumers conversing about products, services, brand names, customer service, and more on social networks. Here we explore how businesses can apply social analytics to purposefully harness this mass of data.
Simplified, social analytics is the process of gathering structured and unstructured data from Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and other social media networks and then passing it through an intermediate management platform that condenses and segments it according to demographics, location, frequency, trends, sentiment, and other parameters.
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