Posted on Nov 08, 2012 by Matt Garner
Data won the election for President Obama. It’s really that simple.
Okay, you’re right – it’s not that simple, but numbers did play a key role during his campaign. A recent TIME article highlighted President Obama’s campaign staff pulling insight from the data they gathered over the previous couple years to raise funds for his campaign. The president’s campaign staff used the data they collected to help identify fundraising dinner hosts, administer donation programs, and determine voter turnout. Campaign Manager, Jim Messina, placed importance on the campaign being metric-driven as he declared, “We are going to measure every single thing in this campaign.” Data mining wasn’t limited to President Obama’s campaign during the election, it also made an prominent appearance on predicting the election.
Nate Silver used his data
Silver – a statistician – was criticized for his audacious predictions on the election. However Nate Silver didn’t make any predictions, he simply used the data provided by the predictions of multiple pollsters to be one of the most accurate prognosticators on the election. Silver relied on data, as opposed to his gut-feeling. This reliance on data allows folks to see what’s truly happening as opposed to using one’s “feelings” which are often clouded and biased.
BuzzMgr provides data
By this point you’re probably asking yourself why I’m talking about this political stuff. Simply, if data can be used to win and predict a presidential election then you should probably consider using the powerful data that can be discovered from monitoring online discussions about your brand, interests, and needs. The BuzzMgr team believes everyone should take advantage of the numbers that are readily available. It’s not like people are quiet on social media – these users are all too willing to share their thoughts on what they love and hate. You just need to monitor these discussions using a monitoring tool (oh, like I don’t know – maybe BuzzMgr).
Similar to President Obama’s campaign team, many clients who have used BuzzMgr for years are able to discover long-term trends and changes from month-to-month and year-to-year. BuzzMgr also also use to see daily and hourly changes. While President Obama’s campaign team made sure to keep their work a secret, you don’t have to worry about the the same consequences. Data from online monitoring is most valuable when it’s shared throughout an organization and members from multiple departments are able to understand trends.
Oh, and don’t be scared off by the high-level statistical analysis used by the individuals above. BuzzMgr is built to be easy to understand and not bombard you with numbers – take a look here.
Do you need to understand loads of data quickly? Dashboards like ours tell you if the chatter is going up – which is certainly a good thing if it’s about something positive. The dashboards also highlight where people are talking, popular themes, and how people feel about your brand or issue.
Your job might be to go deep into the data but decision makers typically need to know the end result and trust you for the details. We like you preach: Data to Insight to Knowledge to Action.
Make sure you check back soon for a post on the top 7 types of social listening roles; what they mean to you and why you should care.