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Social Media is Dead, Long Live Big Data


Social Media has trained artificial intelligence and now Big Data is taking over. Scary, illuminating, real. Welcome to the Matrix/Minority Report.

No wonder Woolworths don’t bother with a Twitter account. That’s for low level customer service stuff. They are focussing on the DATA behind social media. Viva La Big Data.

I’ve been giving some keynote presentations and one day workshop in the last year on Big Data and Social Media, and this is a summary of the marketing part of those workbooks. While it’s easy to be blinded by Geekiness (The 5 V’s, Hadoop etc) at a marketing, social media and even small business level, Big Data is easier to understand when you see it at work.

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Woolworths and Your Friday Night Shop

Woolies and Coles collect your shopping data, they check what you buy on a Friday Night Shop (beer and chocolate bullets anyone?) then provide that data to companies eg. your health/car etc and the motor trade insurance online instant quote can go up or down.

“Because, you see, customers who drink lots of milk and eat lots of red meat are very, very good car insurance risks versus those who eat lots of pasta and rice, fill up their petrol at night, and drink spirits. What that means is we’re able to tailor an insurance offer that targets those really good insurance risk customers,” Woolworths Ltd director of group retail services, Penny Winn, told AdNews.
SMH big data social media

By the way, Choice were wrong. The card (Flybuys, Everyday Rewards) is not the issue as your purchases are tied to your EFTPOS card.

They then provide that data to companies like Facebook and Twitter and also Agencies.

Facebook Uses Your Real World Purchases

Facebook has 3 different ad managers and Partner Categories is available in two of them. Facebook’s Partners are vast  – I currently only have (personally) access to Quantium but their deals with Acxiom, Datalogix, Epsilon etc should give access to Facebook (and anyone advertising regularly) all the major frequent flyer programs, insurance, credit cards and loyalty cards. For example Quantium (Woolworths, supermarkets, insurance etc) as mentioned above:

Facebook Big Data Partner Categories

Facebook Categories big data social media (read more)Facebook Big Data Quantium Partner social media

Once in there, choose your dataset eg those in the top 50 percentile of utilities consumption, or who bought house insurance etc. TIP: if you sell housewares advertise to those that just bought a house ^^

Anyone who has ever filled in a form for insurance or a mortgage has checked the bos saying “it’s ok to share with 3rd parties”. That would be Facebook, Twitter and the big data companies.

Twitter ALSO Uses Your Real World Purchases

Twitter big data social media

Twitter’s partnership with the Big Data companies lets you see the supermarket shopping habits of your followers. I speak on international matters so it’s not surprising my “ethnic explorers” is a higher % than the meat and 3 veg (bbq) brigade.

If you want to geek out, the video above will interest you.

Social Media Trained the Matrix (Big Data)

Every time you tagged a photo with your name, or the football team or your dinner, Google took notice. After several million photos of the Eiffel Tower have been uploaded and tagged, Google said “duh I think I know what the Eiffel Tower looks like now” and proceeds to recommend tags. Give Images.google.com a go if you haven’t already:

Social media trained Google, trained Facebook, trained big data and we trained them well.

In Your Email

CrystalKnows plugs into your email. When you launch an email to John Smith she warns you to keep the email brief, use dot points and get to the main message quickly. When you email James Black, she recommends asking about his wife and 2 kids, and to use feeling words. When I say “she” I of course mean a non-gender specific bot that uses Big Data collected from social media sites to give sentiment and personalised data on individuals. Sales love this one.

Integrated into Social Customer Relationship Management Systems (sCRMs)

I was at Sydney airport when the door crew mentioned my name. I hadn’t handed over my boarding pass. How do you know I’m me, I enquired. Squinting at the screen there were details about me (couldn’t see much). Clearly the facial recognition mushed up with my tweets about the Lounge and my Swarm checkin and their CRM were working a treat. I guess when I walk across a hotel foyer towards the Reception, security camera’s are already at work? Awesome.

Fitbit Or No Job?

Fitbit data is now available to employers. So you better walk to work or you might show signs of health distress and find yourself out before HR can invoke the “can’t sack sick people” clause. After all you were sacked based on a prediction.

Mr Williams suggested analysing data on pilots’ wearable devices would allow employers to identify those suffering stress and help avoid catastrophic accidents. He alluded to the Germanwings crash of March this year. The crash, which killed 150 people, was deliberately caused by co-pilot Andreas Lubitz, who had hidden his mental illness from his employer, despite being declared unfit for work by a doctor.

But Mr Williams admitted there were hurdles to overcome. He told the room of academics, human resources and legal professionals: “We’ve had early conversations with Qantas, saying, ‘Why don’t you think about it?’ Their first response is: unions.”  (AFR big data social media fitbit)

Gee whiz, you reckon? Fitbit plus Friday night supermarket shop is frightening.

Sidenote: 10 years ago I created a patent which was a community generated coin based on activities and cross platform. Interesting to see Qantas points for Fitbit activity heading in that direction.

Facebook Friends = No Mortgage or Loan

Facebook’s social graph (who you connect to and the strength of that tie) is used in their FBO (optimisation algorithm) but it’s also available to “3rd parties”. Your friends defaulting on a mortgage or not paying their Visa card promptly will impact YOUR credit rating.  Facebook Granted A US Patent That Could Deny A Mortgage Application Based On A Users’ Friend List. Get better friends. Or one’s that owe millions not just thousands ^^

Look I could keep going, and delving into Volume, Variety, Velocity, Veracity, etc is a reasonable exercise but for a short intro into how business are using big data and social media this should give you some idea. Let me know if you hear of any other interesting anecdotes. PS the anonymity “your identity is hidden” thing is a myth.

If you would like me to present on Big Data at your next meeting/conference or run a workshop that lifts the veil on Facebook and other social media platforms, sing out. pa@laurelpapworth.com or 0432684992. 

Laurel Papworth

Named by Forbes™ Magazine in the Top 50 Social Media Influencers globally, named Head of Industry, Social Media (Marketing Magazine™) and in the Power150 Media bloggers (AdAge™). CERT IV Training and Assessment certified trainer (Diplomas and Certificates etc) Adult Education. Laurel has manager Facebook Pages for Junior Masterchef, Idol, Big Brother etc. and have consulted on private online communities for banks Westpac, not for profits UNHCR & governments in SE Asia. Lecturer, social media, University of Sydney for 10 years and Laurel has 11,000 online students. Laurel Papworth personally connects to 6 million followers online and has taught around 100,000 people in the last 10 years how to be social media managers.

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