Harris Interactive® (NASDAQ: HPOL), a leading global market-research firm, today announces the launch of word-of-network, WON℠, a new panel-based approach to social media measurement and influence that can monitor the nuanced sentiment of a given target market.
WON is the first panel-based market-research metric to measure word-of-mouth as it manifests in social media. It offers quantitative categorization of comments about brands based on their positive, negative, or neutral sentiments. WON also controls for volume of conversation around a brand and provides clients with a means to predict brand performance.
"Our research has shown that the word-of-network measure filters out much of the potential noise that can pollute traditional social media monitoring and yield very misleading conclusions," said Jeni Lee Chapman, Executive Vice President at Harris Interactive. She continues, "There is a practical advantage when your 'friends' are members of your panel. We can uncover a wealth of information about the commentators that is largely unavailable from traditional social media monitoring programs, which by their nature can only yield the most superficial information at best - and, at worst, present a distorted picture of what is happening in the real world. Our research indicates that a more comprehensive metric, like WON, can provide an early-warning signal of a brand's real time word-of-mouth."
The new WON metric is based on an opted-in panel of over 50,000 people. Harris Interactive monitors the panel to determine the extent of online conversation about a brand or topic, as well as key demographics, such as sex, age, income and any other key variables, of those who are contributing to the online conversation. "We know not only what is being said, but, more importantly, what is being said by a given target market. That level of distinction is vital to most marketers and is what makes WON different from other social-media monitoring systems," adds Ms. Chapman.
WON is a segment of Harris Interactive's BrandLife℠ Tracking program, which differs from other tracking systems primarily because the data come from a single source. Unlike other tracking programs that fuse data from multiple panels, BrandLife's "listening" metrics are powered by the firm's proprietary Research Lifestreaming® platform, an intelligence capability that connects all data on and generated by distinct panelists, thus offering a complete view of responses within the context of the individual. Research Lifestreaming's holistic nature precludes the need to make inferences and assumptions that are necessitated by fused data systems.
Other characteristics of BrandLife Tracking include:
- A validated measure of equity
- A new measure of emotional connection that uncovers and quantifies ambiguous feelings about a brand
- The ability to track exposure to micro-sites without relying on metrics of "site visitation"
- The unfiltered voice of the customer/consumer to inform contextually relevant brand positioning
- A platform that allows for surveys through mobile devices, providing the opportunity to evaluate the respondent's experience soon after an interaction with a brand, event, program sponsorship, etc.