The much-ballyhoed Microsoft ad featuring Jerry Seinfeld finally hit the air last night during NBC’s coverage of the 2008 NFL opener between the Giants and Redskins. The ad, which featured Jerry and Bill Gates at the “Shoe Circus” marked the kick-off of a new $300 million ad campaign aimed to overhaul Microsoft and Window’s ”boring” image. Early speculation on the campaign, including the front page piece in the Wall Street Journal on August 21, described the overarching theme to be “Windows not Walls.”
Those early reports seem to be close at least. Microsoft, which simultaneously launched the Seinfeld video online , has positioned the theme of the campaign on its Website as ”Your World Through Windows.”
However, last night’s commercial (which lasted 90 seconds) didn’t even mention Windows and hardly touched on Microsoft. Appropriately, featuring the co-creator and star of the “show about nothing,” it essentially was an advertisement about nothing.
Most of the early reaction around the blogosphere has been negative, with edgy bloggers failing to latch on to the somewhat dry humor. At least they have the bloggers buzzing though, right?
What’s your thoughts? Did Microsoft just waste $10 million on Jerry (his contract for the campaign)?
The social Web analytics (SWA) field is buzzing, and I’m being contacted by companies in the sector that I didn’t know about when I published The Social Web Analytics eBook 2008 on the 1st July. They’re keen to make the 2009 update, and at this rate that will have to come earlier than later next year. The 2008 eBook has already been downloaded over five thousands of times, which I’m sure is more reflective of the heat in the market than the quality of my prose!
I define SWA as the application of search, indexing, semantic analysis and business intelligence technologies to the task of identifying, tracking, listening to and participating in the distributed conversations about a particular brand, product or issue, with emphasis on quantifying the trend in each conversation’s sentiment and influence. Here’s a quick look at some of the vendors reaching out to me, then rounding off with a bit of gratuitous data visualisation of the blogosphere (you know how I get my kicks).
Techrigy describes itself as enabling “organizations to know what’s being said about their brands, products and people across the social media eco-system. Techrigy’s SM2 solution enables organizations to monitor and analyze conversations, including sentiment, across blogs, social networks, wikis, online video and other user-generated content on the web. Ultimately, Techrigy helps organizations embrace social media, manage risk and identify market trends in real time.”
Expansive and real-time monitoring: over 100 million blogs, Twitter, YouTube, Flickr and Wikipedia are all monitored
Sentiment analysis: SM2 determines sentiment using natural-language processing and Bayesian analysis, and aggregates these to provide a top-level view of social media
Discussion clustering: provides a graphical analysis and classification of all discussions occurring around your products
Customized reporting: display recent discussions, as well as analysis and discussion trends that enable evaluation of marketing or public relations effectiveness… can be scheduled automatically and delivered to anyone
Techrigy offers a “freemium” service at no cost which you might like to try.
CIC claims to be “the first Internet Word of Mouth (IWOM) research and consulting firm in China”. They have offices in Shanghai, but also Birmingham, AL, interestingly.
CIC describes its framework as L-K-P, namely:
* Listen: listening to netizens’ voices about your brand, product, or service
* Know: understanding the communities and cultures that provide the context for the talk
* Participate: meaningfully interact, inspire and/or contribute to netizens’ world.
So, to the tech. How do they describe the way in which they gather up everything and analyse it? CIC employs a “proprietary natural language text mining technology” but doesn’t reference its basis. Could be entirely proprietary of course. And I can’t really determine much more from the website at the moment, but rest assured I’ll be working with CIC to extract the relevant information for the 2009 eBook update.
Island Data takes a different perspective on the source of information to be analysed. Island Data specialises in analysing the communications your stakeholders have with you via emails, comment cards, surveys, blogs, voicemails and call logs. Does this qualify as social media?
This emphasises the dialogue between the organisation and stakeholders rather than between the stakeholders / customers themselves. If they extend out to the comments on their clients’ blogs, and the customer forums they might host, then that gets a bit more social.
Otherwise, Island Data appears to be at the leading edge of the so-called customer relationship management (CRM) field rather than social Web analytics. Equally valid. Highly pertinent, insightful and valuable. But not quite as “social”. I’ll investigate further and get back to you.