Analytics Quinnipiac

Quinnipiac Assignment #03 – Social Media Monitoring Tools

Social Media Monitoring Tools

This week, I wrote an essay and recorded a video about various social media monitoring tools, in the context of watching the NESN (New England Sports Network) website.

My essay is reprinted here in its entirety, except for the graphics.

Social Media Brand Report – NESN – Module 03 ICM 524

Company Brand

New England Sports Network (NESN) is a regional television channel with a wide and varied social mediapresence. The industry is cable (Xfinity) media; their home page is:, which is a WordPress blog.

The television channel’s coverage is of nationally-televised (yet regionally-based) sports such as Red Sox baseball, and local events such as North Attleboro, Massachusetts track and field. There are related stories, about sports but outside the region, which round out the coverage.

The specific campaign is the coverage of area sports on various social media outlets.

Brand Sentiment

According to Topsy, brand sentiment is generally mixed but leans toward positive. The sentiment score for the past month (after a survey of over 9,500 mentions) is 54/100. Social Mention more or less confirms these findings, although that service found more positive than negative mentionings, and turned in a far more impressive 7:1 ratio of positive to negative comments. However, just like on Topsy, the majority of mentionings were found to be neutral ones.

Retweet Rank showed that NESN garners a lot of retweets. They’re in the 98th percentile. This is probably to be expected, with over 100,000 Twitter followers.

Social Campaign Initiative

The brand’s social campaign appears to be not only to promote NESN and increase its viewership, but it may also be to increase viewership on other Xfinity properties.  Further, there seem to be attempts to get viewers to click on advertisements for an M-rated video game (Murdered).

Standard tweets are partly to spread NESN’s own content, but also to spread content about related persons, such as players and potential players for the New England Patriots and the Boston Red Sox. A typical tweet (on June 3, 2014) is as follows:

NESN1:36pm via Twitter Web Client These #Patriots veterans are on the Which one(s) won’t make the Week 1 roster?

Their Facebook campaign appears to be nearly (if not completely) 100% fed by their own site’s home page.

NESN Facebook page June 3, 2014
NESN Facebook page June 3, 2014

The same story about new soccer uniforms appears on the NESN home page, in their Twitter stream, and on their Facebook page.

Quantitative Data

NESN does not hide its quantitative data, providing a link at: page provides links to a number of sites which collect quantitative data.

Chartbeat presented a number of vanity metrics, and provided a comparison to the previous day’s metrics.

Topsy was not linked to on NESN, but their take on the site is still of interest.

However, Topsy’s compilations of mentionings are perhaps too inclusive. It includes some misapplied data. For example, the following tweet shows up in Topsy’s report, even though it has nothing to do with NESN, New England, or sports:

Adams @buyharddrive #7: WD My Passport Pro 2TB portable RAID storage with integrated Thunderbolt cable (WDBRMP0020DBK-NESN): WD My…

Qualitative Data

Qualitative data can, in a way, be cobbled together from some of the above-mentioned metrics.

Social Mention’s compilations of mentionings and then parsing them out by positive, negative, and neutral sentiments can provide some qualitative information about how the brand is perceived online. However, some of the mentionings are likely being misfiled.

Their list of negative mentions is a mystery. Perhaps the term ‘pitch’ is being listed as a negative? Because otherwise I cannot see why the following from Reddit is negative at all:

GAME THREAD: Boston Red Sox (27-29) @ Cleveland Indians (27-30) – June 02, 2014 Boston Red Sox @ Cleveland Indians First Pitch Media Feed Channel Subreddits 06:05 PM CT Video CLE WKYC 3, SportsTime Ohio /r/WahoosTipi Weather BOS NESN /r/RedSox P…

Admittedly, this kind of parsing of mentionings is inexact at the best of times, for the software likely does not have a sarcasm detector, either. And, just like on Topsy, anything with NESN in it was fair game for the software, even though the first hit is for the sale of a hard drive that just so happens to have that particular combination of letters in its serial number.

Brand Reputation on Social Media

The brand’s reputation seems to be best outlined by Social Mention, and it appears to be overwhelmingly positive. This can be seen by an inspection of the quantitative retweet metric (very high) and Social Mention’s own qualitative measurements. Even Topsy’s overly inclusive listings don’t seem to tip the scales into the negative. It might not be beloved, but NESN is certainly well-liked on social media. Even negative stories don’t seem to hurt its reputation, as its followers on social media seem savvy enough to not want to shoot the messenger if their beloved teams lose.

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Quinnipiac Assignment #02 – Qualitative and Quantitative Analytics

Quinnipiac Assignment #02 – Qualitative and Quantitative Analytics

This week’s assignments at Quinnipiac were centered around the differences between quantitative and qualitative analytics. I had a couple of essays to write.

I have decided to reprint one of my essays here, in its entirety.

Qualitative versus Quantitative

I think that a choice between the two is, perhaps, misplaced.

English: Interactive Visualization of Qualitat...
English: Interactive Visualization of Qualitative and Quantitative data in a web based mixed methods application (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Aren’t both of these necessary, in order to really see the big picture?

We Love Quantitative Data

Probably the best part of quantitative data is that it’s relatively easy to obtain, particularly online. Consider this – do we, given the current state of technology, know everyone who comes into, say, a department store?

Web analytics framework
Web analytics framework (Photo credit: Beantin webbkommunikation)

Even when we break this down to hourly increments, and even if we look at closed-circuit cameras, we still might miss someone. After all, if a person leaves and comes back later, we might not notice that it’s the same person.

Not so with the web. Cookies and other tracking codes give us the ability to know that a device has returned; and an account if our site allows for user accounts. That still doesn’t help us if everyone in a household uses the same account, but it’s a start.

We look at our web data and we think – aha! User #12345 has returned four times in one day!

And then we have no idea why that happened, and no way to capitalize on it. It’s the ultimate in vanity metrics, e. g. it’s stuff that can be measured but it isn’t necessarily actionable, or even desirable information.

We Love Qualitative Data

With qualitative data, we get more into the whys and wherefores.

coding cat-egories
coding cat-egories (Photo credit: urbanmkr)

Why did User #12345 return four times in one day? If a purchase is made on the fourth go-‘round, that’s terrific. But why were there three other visits? Even someone performing research and then returning later might not necessarily visit two more times. What’s up with that?

Maybe the website was slow those two other times. Maybe User #12345 got busy and abandoned the cart for Visit #2 and Visit #3. Some of this is inferential. Some of it can be proven, such as site slowness or at least traffic spikes that could imply speed issues. We can’t get into User #12345’s head (at least, not yet).

We REALLY Love Them Together

I think we’ve got to look at the two types together.

In the Huffington Post article, The Big Data Craze Is Just as Qualitative as It Is Quantitative?, Sean Donahue writes, “But for brands, political campaigns and advocacy organizations that aim to have data-driven conversations with audiences, it will be more important than ever to apply qualitative logic and human reasoning to online analytical models. In short, subject matter expertise and deep knowledge will matter more than ever before given the rise of big data.

As communicators, even with what we have at our fingertips today, we need to immerse ourselves in the substance that contextualizes big data and allows us to make sense out of it. This means committing more time, asking more questions, consuming more content and never losing sight of the fact that data without actionable insights is meaningless.”

I believe that what Donahue is saying is that we can and will be getting great big garbage bags full of data, and soon even more of it will be at low or no cost. But without contextual analysis, it’s somewhat meaningless.

Further to that is Anmol Rajpurohit’s point in Qualitative Analytics: Why numbers do not tell the complete story?, wherein he writes, “Quantitative analytics still needs more manual intervention and the results are often fuzzy. In absence of a clear-cut approach and thus automation, it is not as time and energy efficient as the traditional quantitative analytics. But, qualitative analytics is still indispensable as it provides deep, actionable insights about the ‘why’ and ‘how’ aspect, which often gets ignored as we continue to be inundated with the ‘what’ ‘where’ and ‘when’ of statistics.”

As Rajpurohit indicates, qualitative data is fuzzy and manual and not automated. It’s a slow process (and perhaps a less exact science than quantitative), yet it remains necessary to a holistic understanding of online data.

06/30: It's Peanut Butter Jelly Time!!!
06/30: It’s Peanut Butter Jelly Time!!! (Photo credit: ttyS0)

To me, this is peanut butter and jelly. They’re fine separate, but they work best together. With purely quantitative data, we can know that a particular literary passage has 278 words. We can know that two of its longest words are twelve letters long: consummation and undiscovered. We can find that the (probably) most frequently-used word is ‘the’, with twenty occurrences. With qualitative analysis, we learn that the mystery passage is Hamlet’s To Be or Not to Be soliloquy. With qualitative analysis, it stops being a laundry list of words, and its context affords a meaning that goes beyond bare statistics.


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Quinnipiac Assignment 01 – Qualitative and Quantitative Analytics in my Life

Quinnipiac Assignment 01 – Qualitative and Quantitative Analytics in my Life

Quinnipiac University
Quinnipiac University (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I began a new semester at Quinnipiac University; this new course is on social media analytics, which includes Google Analytics plus the collecting and interpreting of actionable data.

My professor is Eleanor Hong, who was also my professor for Social Media Platforms. I had really loved that class, so I made sure to take this one with her as well.

Our first assignment was to create a video. I was very pleased to see some names that I knew who are taking the course with me and I had originally met in Social Media Platforms. My final project partner from that course, though (Kim Scroggins), is graduating later this year and is instead just taking a Master’s Degree capstone project credit course. I have to admit that I do miss my final project partner a bit!

It already looks like it will be an interesting course. This video is about quantitative and qualitative analytics that I use in my daily life.

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Quinnipiac Assignment #15 – Reflections about ICM 522

Quinnipiac Assignment #15 – Reflections about ICM 522

With the end of my first Social Media class came a request for our overall impressions of how things went. Hence, I prepared Quinnipiac Assignment #15 – Reflections about ICM 522.

Quinnipiac Assignment #15 – Reflections about ICM 522

My classmates and I were also tasked with showcasing what we felt was our best work.

I was so very pleased that I had a few works to choose from, but I narrowed my choices down in order to save some space.

My reflections essay included comments about the video and essay portions of Module #4, Module #9, Module #10, Module #11,  and my Final Project; that video is duplicated below.

Module Four was about the Ad Astra Star Trek fan fiction writing community. Module Nine was about the Facebook page that my partner, Kim Scroggins, and I created for our ‘client’, the as-yet undiscovered Rhode Island rock band, J-Krak. Module Ten was about the creation and growth of the Twitter stream that we made for J-Krak. And Module Eleven was all about our less than successful experiments in spreading the gospel of J-Krak to MySpace and Google+ (the former was a particularly abysmal showing. At least our client’s presence on Google+ assured better placement in overall search results).

The class was great fun, and I could not get enough of studying for it. I have never, ever had a course like this before, where I was so into it that I could not wait to study, and I did all of the extra credit because I wanted to, and not because I necessarily needed to. That has never, ever been my experience with a class before this one. This overwhelmingly positive experience has given me the incentive to not only finish my Social Media Certification training, but I am also rather seriously considering going on and getting my Masters’ Degree in Communications, with a concentration in Social Media.

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Quinnipiac Assignment #14 – Final Project ICM 522

Final Project ICM 522

These videos together comprised our final project for Quinnipiac’s Social Media Platforms class, ICM 522.

Final Project ICM 522

At this point in time, I have a short break before starting ICM 524, which is the Analytics class. I am taking it with the same instructor, Professor Eleanor Hong.

In the meantime, here are our project videos.

My partner, Kim Scroggins, went first. I would love it if you could take the time and watch her video, too. We were a true team and really enjoyed working together.

And now here’s my half of the presentation. One of the things that I made absolutely sure of doing was to thank my partner. This was absolutely a team effort and it would have turned out far differently if we had not gotten along as well as we did.

We went over our general experiences with J-Krak and the many social media platforms we tried. We made every effort, I feel, to engage our audience and garner buzz and attention for our ‘client’. We set ourselves up for a rather difficult task, which was to try to get a small measure of fame for a rock band that was not even online in any way, shape, or form when we first started this project.

MySpace was recalled as a failed experiment. Google+, for the most part, was a failed experiment in engagement, but it did help us with improving our search engine optimization efforts. Twitter and our blog were somewhat in the middle. Twitter worked out fairly well as we were able to join the overall conversation. However, the number of our followers remained fewer than the number of people we were following. The blog had an ever-increasing number of followers, but we received few comments. Our best social media platform? Spoiler alert – it was Facebook.

Thanks for watching! Next week, I’ll post my impressions of the class overall.

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Quinnipiac Assignment #13 – Review of the J-Krak Communities

Review of the J-Krak Communities

Once again, this was a week where we did not have to create a video. Instead, we conducted a review of the J-Krak communities that Kim Scroggins and I had created. We compared our efforts on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and MySpace. We also reviewed our efforts in the blogosphere.

Our efforts were all as strong as we could make them (at least, I believe so), but our levels of success were certainly all over the place. We ranged from exceeding our thirty follower requirement for Facebook in about an hour, to nearly no engagement or followers in Google+. Although, in all fairness, the number of views on Google+ was fairly impressive. We were about to join the overall conversation in Twitter. Our experience on MySpace was, we felt, a waste of time. And our blog had a decent following, and the followers were, by the end of the semester, beginning to tip more heavily into the realm of true followers, as opposed to our classmates, friends, and families, who would follow us in order to be nice and help us out, versus people who were truly interested in our message.

Review of the J-Krak Communities

Instead, we wrote up a PowerPoint slide show to get together our strategy for the final two weeks of the semester.

We spent time over the past week performing a lot more social listening and analysis. We grabbed screen shots of all sorts of things which ended up in our final project, which I will post next week.

J-Krak Final Project Presentation

I hope you enjoy our presentation about our review of the J-Krak Communities.

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Quinnipiac Assignment #12 – J-Krak Content Marketing

J-Krak Content Marketing

This week, we worked on a content calendar. It isn’t done yet, so instead I figured I would share the two videos we made last week as they are more or less still applicable to this week.

 MySpace Loses to Google+

This time, I had the honor of going first and speaking about the first part of our failed foray into MySpace.

English: The new Myspace logo Français : Le no...
English: The new Myspace logo Français : Le nouveau logo Myspace (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Everybody says that bands should be on MySpace, but we beg to differ.

English: Google+ wordmark
English: Google+ wordmark (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Please also watch my partner, Kim Scroggins, as she talks about why we decided that Google+ would be a better place for our community.

As our strategy unfolds, I hope you’ll stay tuned. Thanks for watching.

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Quinnipiac Assignment #11 – J-Krak on MySpace and Google+

J-Krak on MySpace and Google+

My partner and I certainly never intended to create two separate new platform presences for our project. However, it turned out that way. We just didn’t have a lot of choice in the matter as our first choice took a spectacular nosedive.

J-Krak on MySpace

Oh, God. MySpace.  We tried. I swear, we tried. But it felt like a waste of time from the get-go.

J-Krak on MySpace and Google+

The board flashes and zips by, but there are nearly no instructions as to how to use it. Search is little help – you can locate people by city, gender, and music genre. And that’s it.

J-Krak on MySpace and Google+

I could not find (confirmed) professional DJs, but I could sure as hell find professional escort services.

Engagement was virtually nonexistent. And this wasn’t just true about a tiny outfit such as ours.  Britney Spears, God love her,  has a million and a half incoming connections but, since she doesn’t have to connect back, her outgoing connections list is considerably smaller. There are comments on her profile by fans, but she and her marketing team don’t seem to answer them.

Perhaps the most telling piece of information about the Britney Spears page on MySpace is that it seems to have last been updated last December. You know, five months ago.

J-Krak on MySpace and Google+

Hit Me Baby, One More Time?

Don’t you have to hit MySpace once, first?

Like the shiny wasteland that it is, Britney seems to be leaving MySpace in her rear view.

And so did we.

J-Krak on Google+

J-Krak on MySpace and Google+

On Google+, it was easy to set up a band page and make it look good.

While we still need to add music, the look and feel of the page are already there.

Even better is the fact that posts can be scheduled in HootSuite, a capability that is missing from MySpace.

It’s too early to really get meaningful metrics, but we’re trying!

Stay tuned.

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Quinnipiac Assignment #10 – J-Krak Twitter Stream

J-Krak Twitter Stream

In order to enhance our online reach, my partner and I created a Twitter account for our project.  This was our assignment, to create a J-Krak Twitter stream.

J-Krak Twitter Stream

At the same time, I also took advantage of the offer of free HootSuite University and became qualified as a HootSuite Certified Professional!

J-Krak Twitter Stream
HootSuite Certified Professional
J-Krak Twitter Stream
KrakHeads logo

As for my own personal growth, I had until recently just not cared for HootSuite. The idea of streams had just not made sense to me, for Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or any other social networking site. Now, I can see that it is finally clicking.  I will most likely start filtering a lot more through it, even after the course has concluded.

One of the most difficult aspects of social media marketing is all of the monitoring that, by necessity, has to go on. With HootSuite, though, the monitoring of any number of social networking sites is a lot easier. For the gift of time (and maybe some sanity), I’ve really got to thank HootSuite.

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Quinnipiac Assignment #9 – J-Krak Facebook Page

Quinnipiac Assignment #9 – J-Krak Facebook Page


J-Krak Facebook Page

Once again, we did not have to create a video this week for Quinnipiac Assignment #9. Instead, my partner, Kim Scroggins, and I were required to create a Facebook page for our J-Krak fans community (which in our blog, we were referring to as KrakHeads). We decided to call the page J-Krak RI in order to better emphasize our intimate connection to the state of Rhode Island.

The Facebook page was designed with a standard Creative Commons background image of sheet music and our preexisting KrakHeads logo (Kim made it by combining a Creative Commons image of a vinyl record with lettering in a font that we selected together) was used as our logo and the avatar for the page itself. That avatar has since been replaced with an image of John Krakowski and John Cairo together (the avatar was replaced after our class was finished).

We were pleasantly surprised when we hit one hundred likes in about six and a half hours. Currently, the new page has 125 fans on Facebook.  We are very excited about this, and Kim and I feel that we have definitely found our platform!

Thank you for following! And party on!

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