ROI of Social Media avatar badge at SocialMarketingConversations.com Jeff Katz and Eric Peterson at Twitalyzer are taking on the task of providing “Serious Analytics for Social Media Experts”.  This is admirable and essential as social media grows and social marketing becomes a relevant aspect of the overall marketing function – we need serious tool that put data in context. 

Twitalyzer Logo at SocialMarketingConversations.com In this episode we explore how Twitalyzer is being used by both individuals and companies both.  The profiles and benchmarking are important to individuals using Twitalyzer – it is just information for them, but not actionable.  Organizations however are using the Dashboard Authenticated features – that includes setting and managing goals and understanding the sentiment of their brand; very much a data-centric, benchmarking and optimizing their behavior.

Where do they see their product advancing?  Jeff sees the tools and technology in this space at the starting line, sort of like the early days of the web.  They’ve already produced a series of API’s and they are looking at integrating their functionality into theirs; since we recorded the podcast they’ve announced integration to both TweetMeMe (February 2010) and the Viralheat Analytics platforms (March 2010); they had integration with Google Analytics already in place.

Sentiment analysis and tonality is still pretty much manual, but it can be supported by the user managed dictionary; usage and native language continue to be areas of focus for the near future.  The ‘art’ of semantic and tone are probably going to be the more labor intensive aspect of analysis and monitoring in social media for a while.

Play / Download Jeff Katz / Twitalyzer Episode 2 Podcast Here

I will share with you that initially I wanted to take issue with their tag line. 

It is one of the first efforts I’ve seen that uses the term ‘expert’ along with ‘social media’, which implies that there could be such a thing as a ‘social media expert’.  In the past I’ve regularly expressed the perspective that it would be hard to be an expert in an industry that is only months old, but that that logic is flawed. 

Social media is not and should not be taken as a standalone channel for communications and interactions – the reach is just too low.  It needs to be incorporated to work with traditional media in new ways, to make the other media more social.  ‘Social media’ as a standalone tactic will not be on it’s own for long – it has to join other media types and support the effort to reach and connect with prospects, customers & stakeholders, regardless of how they they decide to participate in the  conversation.

Is it time for ‘experts’ to emerge in social media?  hmmm… yeah I think so and perhaps we can begin to apply the ‘expert’ title to those that are both experienced and observant of the social media space – Jeremiah Owyang, Chris Brogan and Gary Vaynerchuck come to mind right as my favorites.  Who are the experts in social media you see?  Who’s emerging?

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