Posts Tagged ‘Jeremiah Owyang’

Twitterbowl Analysis

Tuesday, February 5th, 2008

Jeremiah was kind enough to drop by my blog and let me know that his colleague Josh Bernoff had analyzed the Twitterbowl data that I mentioned yesterday.

The winner? The Coke Balloon ad, garnering 48 votes with a mean score of 4.32 out of 5.

Here it is:

Social Media in Real-Time

Monday, February 4th, 2008

I’m a political junkie. I have been fascinated by politics and government for many years a passion which eventually led to a now underused degree in political science.

I am also now a Twitter junkie. The "global watercooler" allows me to eavesdrop on many conversations and throw in my $0.02 on a variety of topics when I think I have something valuable to add.

In the past week or so, these two vices have collided in a spectacular way. It started with the Democratic primary in South Carolina last Saturday. A few of us social media/political junkies (@stuartma, @JillFoster, et al) began discussing the results as they came in. Those of us purists with online-only access to CNN’s raw feeds (TV is so 1.0) had to rely on others to report the numbers as they came in. We could then offer our thoughts on the how’s and why’s… Or just "listen" and learn.

Once the results were solid and the networks had made their projections, the speeches from each of the candidates began. This was the magical part of evening. Barack Obama’s speech elicited responses from my Twitterverse that were raw emotion and reflected his ability to reach down into people’s soul and stir it up.

That this communal emotional response was palpable in an online medium is, I believe, revolutionary. To the casual observer, Obama’s speech was a great one, to be sure. But the ability to witness the emotions it evoked in others in real-time transformed the speech from a political event into an emotional event shared by a community of pseudo-strangers. This has never really been possible before.

Last night I observed a similar event during the Super Bowl. Since I’m more of a CFL guy than NFL, I wasn’t watching the game. I was, however, watching a couple dozen folks twitter the game as they watched it. Thank to Jeremiah Owyang‘s social media experiment, most of the Twitter-banter centred on rating the (in)famous SuperBowl commercials as they aired. The results of Jeremiah’s experiment can be found by searching for @superbowlads at terramind’s search service. Currently, it lists over 2500 responses. hundreds of people sharing an event in real-time through an online medium. Very Cool. [late-breaking re-cap from Jeremiah]

In between commercials, there was, of course, a football game going on. While I was doing other things online (watching this stunning video, for example), I could get a feel of how the game was going just from the expletive-laced bursts of emotion emanating from my Twitter client.

I am very much looking forward to that other ‘Super’ event this week: Super Tuesday. I will miss the bulk of the day’s conversations since I’ll be in meetings and without internet access all day (though I may sneak a peek at TwitterBerry now & again).

As the polls close, however, I’ll be ensconced in my hotel room all a-Twitter about what the results will mean… even for us Canadians. My prediction? I think by wednesday morning (it’ll come early!) we’ll have a pretty good idea of the two names on the Presidential ballot come November.

I have some more thoughts brewing about the social-scalability of Twitter. Tonight may have been proof that we’ve finally seen the end of the technical scalability problems!  I’ll post later in the week on what I mean by "social-scalability" and why I think it’s a problem. Stay tuned.

End Of The Facebook Gold Rush? I Don’t Think So Either.

Tuesday, August 21st, 2007

Jeremiah disagrees with VentureBeat’s Kevin Barenblat’s assertion that the Facebook application gold rush is over and I agree with him.

In the months since the F8 platform launched May 24th, we’ve all been invited to bite people, graph people, play scrabble with people, tell people where we’ve been, etc. These are mostly fun applications and some will last and some won’t – we’re only now beginning to see what gives an ‘entertainment app’ the legs to last. That’s Phase One – Entertainment.

Phase Two, Commercialization, has just begun. While there have been ‘sponsored groups’ for quite some time, the corporations, as Jeremiah mentions, have begun to develop and release their own apps. Marketers hoping to capitalize on the popularity and virality of Facebook must tread carefully, however. Social networks are fickle things, and the lessons learned from the Entertainment apps may not apply.

My gut says that there are two opportunities for brand marketers in the Facebook app world. The first is essentially a cold call on a potential consumer – useful app that is very subtly branded. Anything too bold will turn off potential customers who are generally distrustful of the commercialization of their entertainment (irony noted). For example, every piece of feedback I heard about the Transformers movie was complaints about the over-the-top GM product placement.

The second opportunity for brand marketing on Facebook is almost the complete opposite – put the brand boldly out in front. This will only work when there is already a cult-like fan base – car owners come to mind. It wouldn’t be hard to imagine hard-core Volkswagen fans, for example, proudly displaying a VW badge on their profile page.

So what is Phase Three? Hard to say, but if I were a betting man, I’d say Utility. That is not to say that there aren’t already some really useful apps, but I think we’ll see some really innovative stuff coming through our news feeds once the geeks (Phase 1) and marketers (Phase 2) have had their first swings at the plate.

User Engagement Defined

Tuesday, July 24th, 2007

Apparently this is definition week. Yesterday I tried to define Web2.0 and tomorrow I’ll have another one. I seems an appropriate way to kick off a new blog, actually. Whatever I write over the next months would mean somewhat less if not written (and read) within the context of these definitions.

Dave McClure wrote this morning about measuring user engagement (UE). Problem number one, of course, is defining what it is that you’re measuring! Jeremiah Owyang offered his interpretation back in February:

Engagement indicates the level of authentic involvement, intensity, contribution, and ownership

I was going to write an entire post picking apart Jeremiah’s definition and creating my own, but I realize now that his is a really good one. I’ll instead take a spin at interpreting the four keys concepts in the definition to give them some depth and give some thought at how we’d try to measure each one:

  • authentic involvement – this is a 2-for-1 as it covers both the idea that we are talking about real users and that those users are involved – and not just passing through. The latter is the easier to measure, on most sites you could simply set a threshold of interactions per visit (greater than 1 should suffice). Any user meeting the threshold is involved. Authenticity is a little tougher to track – depending on the type of site – but IP blacklists and user-agent sniffing will go a long way to filtering out the non-authentic.
  • intensity – is essentially the level of involvement. Once we’ve established that a user in involved with the site, one way to measure intensity is by looking at how long each user stays on the site by both time and interactions. How often users return to the site is also a key metric for measuring engagement intensity.
  • contribution – is more dependent on the type of site than the previous two concepts. Contributions come in a variety of forms: forum posts, reviews/ratings, blog comments, questionnaires/surveys, form submissions. This is easily captured and measured, but can be tricky to interpret. Forum posts and blog comments for example have a considerable breadth in terms of how much contribution content is realized per contribution. The quality of the contribution is also a consideration and difficult to measure.
  • ownership – is the strength of connection that is felt by the user towards the site. This is perhaps the most difficult component of UE to track. Partly this is due to the fact that much of the expression of ownership is done off-site. Measuring ownership is almost an adjunct of reputation management. If you’re tracking what is being said about your site, you can measure how attached you users are to it.

It’s possible that I’ve completely misinterpreted what Jeremiah meant when he penned his definition of User Engagement. That’s ok, each strategist works from a slightly different set of experiences and will perceive the web, and its users, in a unique way. I’d appreciate any feedback!