If COVID taught us one thing, it’s this: getting too comfortable is fatal. Brands that weren’t quick to reimagine themselves and adapt to new, unmet needs were left behind. And this rapid shift was felt just as acutely in the consumer and market intelligence category, with clients quick to jump ship when providers did not respond with equal dexterity. We know this, because they came to us.
But does this one significant event explain the 87% win rate we’ve had with new business, which has been pouring in from other social listening vendors? In part, yes. But there’s so much more to it.
Superior Product Innovation
As a company, NetBase Quid consistently pushes beyond what we know and how we currently do things – a “comfort zone” is probably the only thing we shy away from. We have been committed to pushing new product updates every three weeks for more than a decade – and have consistently hit that mark. Our goal is to set the pace and then stay ten steps ahead of it.
When we identified shifting needs at the start of the pandemic, it was nothing new here to adapt to them. We were in motion ahead of the curve, connecting with clients keen to identify emerging trends and stay ahead of it as well. They sought to expand their capabilities to fully explore the new, digitally accelerated landscape and find new ways to engage; whitespace to explore. We facilitated all or that and more in their time of need. Word gets around.
But none of that would have mattered without the exceptional accuracy of the intelligence they were depending on as they made these category-defining decisions.
Exceptional Accuracy & Time to Insights
Accuracy of insight is a tall order, as is offering it up in a fully transparent way – and in real-time. But everything hinges on it. A decision based on inaccurate data means missing opportunities, chasing hot leads that aren’t, and misunderstanding audience values, which – as we’ve also learned this past year – is not a thing to trifle with.
Here are few musts that any consumer insights tool worth your time must have:
- Intuitive topic creation and reporting
- Deep topic segmentation and the ability to save these analyses
- Historical data capabilities, limited only by what social channels allow
- Complete news, imagery and social web data captures to inform accurate decision-making
- Sampling capabilities that are clearly defined and offer the same level of accuracy
- Rapid, real-time (or as near real-time as possible) insight
Please note, this is far from an exhaustive list, but it’s a great starting point for any enterprise seeking a new consumer and market intelligence partner.
And you need to be aware that other social listening vendors fall short on many of those points, as there have been quite a few tool limitations reported. We have many anecdotal reports from current customers who’ve made the switch to NetBase Quid, and the publicly vetted reviews we’ll be citing below mirror the challenges they experienced.
Their Tool Limitations
Aston H, Senior Analyst at a Marketing and Advertising Company, shared a review of other social listening vendors where “the data analysis in the tool is not at all intuitive compared to other social listening tools.” Iggy G, Enterprise Social Analyst felt similarly, reporting in a 2.5 Star Review that it was “less instinctive to use than other social listening tools I’ve used in the past.”
And it’s also important to be forthcoming about the true accuracy and time to insight a tool offers. As this Software Company’s half-star review of another vendor reveals, they’ve fallen short on that measure as well: “The tool did not capture all the articles on our company, and the sales team intentionally mislead us trying to lock us into another year contract.”
But at least it isn’t buggy? Well . . . An “Anonymous Marketing User’s” review says “the queries take a while and the Topic Wheel has become buggy for all of our reports. Sometimes it will not load at all, while other visualizations so. It will also keep a filter on after you turn it off, rendering inaccurate topic wheel information. The sentiment analysis is also unreliable. I don’t like the algorithm at all.”
An Executive Sponsor in Broadcast Media shared his/her frustration around “slow load times” and lack of unique author counts. And Stephen J., Business Systems Advisor, Digital Information Technology and Services Enterprise has similar complaints in his review, citing: “Lack of communication on key issues (Facebook crawling issue). Lack of coverage for major platforms like Instagram. Rigid automated reporting, data exports. Comments are not covered in data volumes. Poor automated sentiment.”
And Ashton H continued, sharing disappointment when it came to real topic segmentation, as “you’re only allowed to go through pages and select up to 100 posts at a time to segment, or mass groups of similar phrases together and call them a topic (but the latter means much less accuracy in topic segmentation). Not to mention, historical data can be a hit or miss, now that they charge to get 100% historical data on top of what you pay for their limited amount of mentions.” And that “per mention” pricing comes up a good bit as well.
At NetBase Quid, we recognize the processing power required to parse massive quantities of data at once – and we meet that challenge head-on. We offer unlimited data as part of our service, because we’re equipped to meet that demand every day. Mention-based pricing is certainly a way to dissuade a significant customer base from overtaxing a tool’s capabilities, but it’s just not something we need to do here, which connects back to our consistent innovation commitment.
And this is something other social listening vendors’ customers discovered was a crucial differentiator – the hard way.
Yulia Y., small business analytics manager shared a 2.5 Star Review speaking to the frustration this pricing causes customers: “I understand that they generate annual contract by maximum amount of mentions, but what if we are underusing the capacity? They should charge for the mentions used and not charge the maximum capacity of mentions, mainly because of political campaigns, which have their up and downs.” That gets unrealistically expensive, quickly.
And what the tool does report out feels sloppy – which is something agencies can be sure comes across when they pitch “advanced social listening services” to increasingly data intelligence savvy potential clients.
An Anonymous Marketing and Advertising User created a bulleted list that hits on a some recurring themes:
- When filtering by country, seems to routinely include mentions from other countries
- The basic package offers little to no built-in audience segmentation
- Can sometimes stall when loading dashboards
- It is not clear how much data you can actually download through the tool – download section
And those stops and stalls are particularly pronounced at the precise time when customers really need their analytics.
Take the massive social data breakdown some unfortunate brands experienced during the holidays of 2018. Instagram changed and their tool did not. Instagram should never change faster than your analytics tool. Ever. All analytics partners are typically given many months warning ahead of significant changes.
Or that time analytics providers struggled to rearchitect their underlying infrastructure to accommodate Instagram and Facebook data captures. This is an ongoing struggle for companies that aren’t innovating at top speed. Be sure to ask your provider how often it pushes product updates – you already have our answer. And if you have other questions, we’re easy to reach – and entirely motivated to help you succeed.
Clear, Caring & Accessible Customer Support
This one could have been first, as it’s a distinction that’s mentioned to (and about) our team again and again. Every NetBase Quid employee understands that we exist because our clients choose us. And the reasons they choose us go well beyond the superior accuracy our insight provides, as there will always be a learning curve to master – particularly when pushing product updates every three weeks! Keeping customers on that cutting edge with us requires clear, caring and accessible customer support.
Yulia didn’t have this experience with her other social listening vendor: “We would like to have a better approach to our [customer service] requests. When the platform lost its connection with Facebook (and it happened a lot) the only answer we got was: sorry, we are working on it. But we lost clients because of the promise we broke, we couldn’t get them real time data. . . . Any changes in contract and billing was a challenge. You can go up, but can’t go down.”
Customer care is certainly time consuming, but well worth it, as it keeps us in tune with new needs as they emerge, informs and inspires our innovative mindset and shows customers that we listen and adapt to serve them.
And finally – why share these reviews and this comparison now? We wanted to assure you that we’re uniquely prepared to handle the influx of inquiries, as we’ve been doing so for years now. Reach out for a demo and we’ll show you our NetBase Quid capabilities and help your brand or agency live its best online life.