Social media is a challenge for brands, say experts

Research experts at I-COM in Lisbon have stressed the difficulties of assessing a brand’s presence on social media.

Facebook and Twitter
Facebook and Twitter

Dan Calladine, head of media futures at Isobar, and Giles Palmer, CEO of social media monitoring firm Brandwatch, were among those who raised the difficulty of measuring how brands are perceived on social media.

Calladine said, “Social media is hard to measure. We might get clients wanting to advertise on blogs but they are too small to be measured by ComScore and Nielsen so we need other ways to find measurement.”

Palmer said social media is a chaotic conversation. “If I’m searching for I-COM on Twitter, there’ll be a couple of hundred tweets and it’s that data we are trying to get at and make useful to companies. There is some structure to that complication, for example, there is a hashtag but the rest of it is natural language and therefore unstructured.”

Palmer said the majority of the internet is social, with many sites allowing people to upload comments, with one newspaper article alone able to gather hundreds of comments. He said getting hold of clean data sets using queries can be difficult, citing companies with common names such as Egg, Orange and 3.

Amaia Lasa, CEO of social media firm Attentio, said companies are faced with the challenge of social media but it was also an opportunity.

Calladine predicted by 2012, there could be twice the amount of social media content created and time spent on social media could increase by a third.

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