How would you know what your audience thinks about your brand or products?
This has always been a pressing question for every advertiser. Apparently, the answer to this question is now within reach – at least through Facebook.
Mark Zuckerberg’s social media platform has just released a new data analysis tool called “Topic Data.” Based on the announcement on Facebook, the feature allows advertisers to find out what the audience posts about a brand online – or, in Facebook’s words, learning “what matters to your audience.”
Take a look at what this potentially redefining tool offers to marketers:
The Lowdown on Topic Data
Photo of Facebook’s topic data ecosystem from Facebook.com
Before we get into details, let’s clarify one thing: this is no tool for brand monitoring. The new feature has no capability to tag every mention of a brand that the company can respond to it. What it does, however, is provide a clear idea of how the audience responds to different marketing strategies. Topic Data lists the feedback that a website’s target market has put online for a new product or a new ad.
Facebook has provided some good examples on how the tool functions. For example, “A fashion retailer can see the clothing items its target audience is talking about, to help them decide which products to stock.”
Topic Data collects whatever the audience shares or voices out on their timelines. It also keeps tabs on trends that gain a significant amount of attention online. Upon request, a website may obtain such information relating to its brand.
This feature, however, is not exactly new. Facebook admits that prior to this rollout, many third parties have already had services that provide similar data analyses. Topic Data’s difference is that Facebook gathers data from a sizable chunk of the target demographic. It also groups the said data to provide actionable insights to marketers.
The Issue on Privacy
As with any new Facebook feature, there are people who worry that this tool might jeopardize the privacy of the social media platform’s gargantuan user base. Facebook, being innovative as it is, is already one step ahead of this potential issue.
Topic data ensures that all types of personal information stay within Facebook’s own servers. Also, the new feature doesn’t scrape any data from the Messenger app.
When marketers receive the data requested, what shows up is an aggregated and anonymized set of data. Every report that comes from Topic Data contains only interpretations and analyses (or as Facebook puts it, insights) of the available posts online, not the actual data that appear on news feeds.
The Concern on Availability
As of posting, the Topic Data tool is only available for select DataSift partners in the UK and US.This company, who served as Facebook’s partner in developing the tool, has created a new API specifically for this data analysis platform.
Facebook announced its plans to expand the availability of this new feature soonest. As for when that will happen, we all have to wait for further announcements.
The Impact on Social Media Marketing
In one word, the impact of Topic Data on social media marketing is massive. Just imagine if this becomes part of the features analytics software like Siteoscope offers. Advertisers will have more data to analyze so that every marketing campaign can be more effective.
Topic Data opens an opportunity to redefine the social media strategies we do here at TrueLogic Online Solutions, Inc. The input from this feature will allow us to gauge what works and what needs work for our clients and their respective audiences.
From the perspective of content marketing, Topic Data could be of great use too. The data from this tool could guide writers in producing fresh, original content; not just for social media, but also for blogs and press releases; and in determining what types of story slant pique the interest of the readers.
For consultancy effort, information from Topic Data prove helpful in determining the approach for a particular campaign. After all, knowing how the audience thinks is a good way to ensure that the strategy we formulate is effective for them.
Topic Data steers marketers towards the right direction on how they could win the audience. The information it provides is enough to make advertisers rethink what ads or content they publish online.
The moment Topic Data becomes available to everyone, it would certainly redefine the way we know social media marketing.