Revealed, the six hidden superpowers of social data

A superpower is something special.

Something that separates you from the rest. Something that lets you do things; mere mortals can only dream of.

Among the posts, comments and replies on social lies a superpower. Six in fact. Six superpowers that will give you deeper, more valuable insights into the people that matter to you.

There’s more.

These 6 superpowers aren’t available to everyone.

Those relying on social listening alone are missing out. These superpowers need a deeper, more human approach to unlock their potential. This is the secret for getting the same quality of insight as you would demand from traditional market research.

So, what are these powers and how can they help you?

1. Emotions are a superpower

How we feel is a big part who we are. Our emotions guide us through life, telling us what we like and what we don’t. Warning us of danger, revealing the first signs of love.

The emotional analysis of social data helps you see how people feel – and allows you to understand why. You did this, they felt that. It’s a powerful tool to help you understand the impact you’re having on the people that matter to you. It’s a way to understand the lasting impression you’ve made on them and how this may shape their future behaviour.

Understanding how people feel is the first step. It will inspire you to build experiences that create the feelings you want your audience to feel.

 2. Values are a superpower

Our emotions don’t operate in isolation. Rather, they’re shaped by our moral compass. What we hold to be right & wrong. These are the values we use to navigate the world. They are the beliefs that guide what we chose to accept or reject. Understanding these will help you navigate the right path.

Social captures our values but it also helps shape them. Many turn to it to help validate how they feel and what they think. Analysing these conversations can help you stay tuned to emerging shifts in consumer values.

Understanding values will help you appeal to people’s broader sensibilities and stop you putting a foot out of turn.

3. Sentiment is a superpower (when done right)

We think of sentiment is a decision. It’s a reflection on an experience which people then rate and share in their social posts.

We’ve had automated sentiment for years, so what’s the benefit of going deeper?

Automated sentiment gives you a general sense of direction – a deeper analysis reveals its full potential. It can help you break down the customer/user/patient experience in each of its constituent parts, and then rate each individually. Which gives you a much more useful assessment of what’s working and what could be improved.

Properly understanding what creates positive and negative experiences across the user journey will help you prioritise your investment.

4. Culture is a superpower:

No one is an island. Our thoughts don’t emerge in a vacuum but are shaped by our cultural context. Social data helps reveal the cultural context that shapes people’s values, attitudes, and priorities.

From politics and history to popular culture. Current, past and emerging trends shape our understanding of the world, guiding our priorities for what matters in life, how we chose to act, and what we chose to believe in.

Appreciating the cultural context will help you understand the deeper currents pulling your audience towards certain behaviours.

5. Context is a superpower:

Just as it’s important to understand these big cultural influences, it’s also important to zoom in and understand their world.

This is about understanding the shape and rhythm of life, the people that play a role in and around your audience. What’s going on in their lives and how does it matter?

Who are they with, what are they doing, how are they acting, how does this relate to the world around them? It’s about understanding the moments in life where your brand and your audience come together.

Understanding the context is about walking a mile in your audience’s shoes. It will help you see the world through their eyes and help you make decisions with them in mind.

6. Symbolism is a superpower:

The social world is full of symbols, clues that help us decode the images, signs, and the colours of life. These are what people decide to include in their photos or the language and metaphor they use to convey how they feel. Interpreting the meaning behind these symbols helps us understand the recurring themes behind the words, phrases or imagery they use. It will help you understand the language of your audience.

Understanding the symbols and meaning of life will put you more in tune with the needs and motivations of your audience. While, at the same time, help you understand how to fit in and be relevant.

More the sum of it parts.

A true Superhero is more than the sum of their powers. Instead, it’s how their different strengths come together that makes them truly heroic.

The real potential of social data is to help us understand the depth and complexity of the audiences we’re looking to serve. What makes them tick and why?

A deeper approach to analysing social data can create these more Human Insights – by harnessing these superpowers – to give you the power to stand out.

Get in touch to discover how you can harness these superpowers.


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