Building a Text Analytics Command Center for Social & Private Data Analysis

September 13, 2011
188 Views

I met with Mehrshad, our CIO, Social Intelligence Architect & VP of Product Management, to talk about a new concept that we are working on here at CI called the Text Analytics Command Center (TACC). We believe that social media analytics will continue to grow in importance but it’s the blending of social and private data that can help companies truly extend their understanding of their customer and industry. The TACC is meant to address both technically and strategically the need for robust analytics of unstructured data.

I met with Mehrshad, our CIO, Social Intelligence Architect & VP of Product Management, to talk about a new concept that we are working on here at CI called the Text Analytics Command Center (TACC). We believe that social media analytics will continue to grow in importance but it’s the blending of social and private data that can help companies truly extend their understanding of their customer and industry. The TACC is meant to address both technically and strategically the need for robust analytics of unstructured data.

First off, what is the Text Analytics Command Center?

The text analytics command center is a strategy and technology for analyzing social media or private text, or a combination of both and integrating those findings into an existing data management system or dashboard. It’s geared, with a combination of software and services, to meet the evolving text analytics needs of an organization. It’s not simply monitoring unstructured text, whether social or private, but providing organizations with a process and structure to do something with the resulting insights.
What type of company or organization would be interested?

Any company with a source of private data – emails, customer chats, transcribed videos, call center transcripts – that is struggling to filter and manage this ever-growing resource for business insights. A Fortune 500 company with a large client base may have both social and call center sources that may provide unique insights once the information has been analyzed and correlated. Any company that is struggling to manage the velocity and volume of unstructured data – to better understand their customer – needs to think about how they are going to approach this particular issue.

How do you see TACC integrating into existing enterprise efforts of customer management?

The TACC can help ensure that relevant insights are shared across the enterprise by correlating social with other more traditional analytics. The goal is to make information accessible and available across the organization not only for marketing or sales or customer services. Another big piece is filtering and organizing the data so that it can be integrated into existing systems. We don’t want to introduce the need for new workflows or processes but work within the data management structure a company already has. It’s about creating a text analytics communication hub, which enables the sharing of critical insights across the enterprise.

How would a company begin the process of developing a TACC?

Very broadly, we recommend going through a discovery phase: defining the metrics you want to track, identifying the text channels you want work with, where they are located and developing a plan to integrate this analysis with existing metrics. The biggest piece of advice we can give is to start small and allow the scope of your text analytics effort to develop, as you are able to show ROI. It’s much easier to canvas for support if you are able to tie social and text analytics to key performance indicators. This is a multi-phase approach, not a lump, one-time only investment.

We’ve talked quite a bit about the emerging importance of monitoring both social and text analytics. Is it still critical to analyze social media on its own?

Of course, social media is growing, adoption rates continue to increase and new applications and uses are developing all the time. The critical next phase is to understand how social media impact business. Understanding social media and the social customer involves more than just monitoring but analyzing and correlating social media insights with other data. Here at CI, we recognize the importance of social media but also admit that it is only a single channel and that to truly understand your consumer, products and industry you have to be able to begin to integrate data from a variety of sources.