Thursday, August 5, 2010

Social Media Analytics: Are we ready?

Social media analytics is a new buzz word in business analytics market. Is Indian market ready for it?

Social Media analytics helps analyzing unstructured information, about your brand, product or competitors, which is available on a social media network sites such as Facebook, twitter or blogs.

Social Media Analytics can help you find out the following information
  • What your customers like about your products/services and what they don't like about your products/services?
  • What more do they want in your product?
  • What are they talking about your competition's products?
  • Identify topics about your product or services that can draw huge crowds? This has big potential to harm your brand.
  • Identify Influencers who can influence people to buy your product or service
  • Measure ROI on your online marketing campaigns
  • Identify emerging issues with your products so that you can take corrective measures proactively
  • Measure Brand Impact in market.
This kind of solution requires heavy usage of social media sites by community. How many people in India use Facebook? How many people in India have a habit to write blogs on regular basis? How many people write product reviews on regular basis in India?

Currently there are 10 million facebook users from India. This represents only 2% of entire facebook community. It represents only 0.89% of entire Indian population. It represents  only 13% of total online population. More than 55% of facebook users are of less than 24 years age.

Do you really think that views posted by such a tiny community on social media site can influence your marketing budget or product development? Moreover, Indians do not have habit to express their opinions or ideas openly in public forums. This is more to do with culture in India. You will find very few reviews(> 5 in most of the scenarios) about products on social sites in India. I am sure this will change once Y-generation comes on board. In next five years, more than half of the population of India will be between age of 25 to 35.

I think India is not yet ready for advanced analytics products like Social Media Analytics. I would not bet my marketing budget or product development on set of users which represents only 0.89% of total population. I shall not develop competitive strategy based on opinion of users which represents only 13% of total online community in India. Number of users who are registering on social media sites are increasing exponentially day by day in India. I am sure social media analytics will prove to be very useful when usage of social media site increases with number of users.

Social network sites are being used heavily in countries like US. There are total 125 mn facebook users from USA. It represents 41% of total US population. It represents 55% of their total online population. Solution like Social Media Analytics matters a lot in country like US wherein Social media usage is so high.

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