The Hashtag Dilemma

The Hashtag Dilemma – What’s happening with the Instagram API and what you can do to make the most of it

WHAT’S THE INSTAGRAM API UPDATE ALL ABOUT?

Instagram and Facebook have been making several changes to their data streams in recent times in order to administer better user privacy and more supervised control over accounts to ensure their authenticity. The most recent update occurred on the 11th of December 2018.

Hence there are several implications on the availability of Instagram data to third-party applications and data providers, such as 20/Twenty, over the course of this year.

Read on below to get an overview of what these changes are, what they imply and how you can continue to still make the most out of Instagram data with 20/Twenty!

WHAT ARE THESE CHANGES?

Apart from cracking down on fake accounts and making their interface more user focused over the past month, Instagram has continued to keep on track with it’s planned API depreciation (discontinuation of Instagram data available for tracking for apps and data providers via its application interface). All these changes are so that users can have better control over their data and securing their privacy.

Instagram tracking now requires Business Account Authentication
Instagram tracking now requires Business Account Authentication

 

Here’s a quick look at the changes to the Instagram API from earlier this year to now –

 

Data Access Type Data Access Availability (Pre-April 2018) Data Access Availability (April 4th 2018) Latest Data Access Availability (Post-April and Dec 11th 2018 Update)
Tracking Posts from Business Accounts Yes Yes Yes
Tracking Hashtags Yes Yes Yes, Limited (Top 30 hashtags for business accounts only)
Tracking engagement data (including the number of likes, comments and shares) Yes Yes, Limited Yes, Limited
Tracking all Post Content (Including Bio, post content, caption) Yes Yes, Limited Yes, Limited
Tracking Posts from Public User Accounts Yes No No
Tracking Posts based on geo-location Yes Yes No
Tracking Follower Lists of Public Authors Yes No No
Visible Data – Author Username Yes No No
Visible Data – Author Gender Yes No No
Ability To Collect Historic Data Yes Yes, Limited Yes, Limited (Past 24 hours only)

Highlights from the latest updates this December that apply to Instagram data via applications and data providers:

  1. Only Instagram Business Accounts will have access to Instagram data and are limited to 30 hashtags per authenticated account
  2. Instagram historic data will only be limited to the last 24 hours
  3. Data from Instagram will no longer carry the following –
    1. Time and Date of Posting
    2. Geo-Location of Posts
    3. Author Usernames
    4. Author Gender
  4. Engagement data per post in the form of likes and comment counts will be limited
  5. Business account and account tracking based on @handles is supported

 

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR YOU & HOW CAN YOU MAKE THE MOST OF THESE CHANGES ON 20/TWENTY?

Circus Social understands how paramount it is to still be up to date with your campaign, brands, and competition, as well as be able to get to the metrics that matter the most to you.
We have hence rolled out a few measures that require our clients to provide authentication via 20/Twenty at the earliest and make the most of these new changes.

 

  1. NEED FOR IMMEDIATE BUSINESS ACCOUNT AUTHORIZATION
    Convert your Instagram Account Into a Business Account
    Convert your Instagram Account Into a Business Account. Image credits: constantcontact.com

    Current Instagram data access is restricted to allowing data access only via Business Accounts and for a limited number of 30 hashtags per unique account.
    In order for you to continue to get access to Instagram data and view rich insights on our platform, you will be required to provide authentication on 20/Twenty.

    Why does this need authentication and what does it mean?

    1. In order for data providers like 20/Twenty to continue collecting data from Instagram, 20/Twenty users need to provide verification that they allow 20/Twenty to collect data on behalf of your account for the data that matters most to you.
    2. You will need to ensure that you are an Admin of a Facebook page and an Instagram Business page that are linked together to proceed with the authentication.
    3. 20/Twenty will allow for you to get full coverage of the 30 hashtags from public accounts as per Instagram’s guidelines.
    4. Please note that all authorizations shared do not involve the storing and accessing of any personal information or data.

The more Business Accounts you provide authentication with, the more Instagram data you can access.

 

  1. INSTAGRAM TRACKING – KEEP IT FOCUSED TO YOUR TOP 30 HASHTAGS*

    Choose the top 30 hashtags most relevant to your business to track them.
    Choose the top 30 hashtags most relevant to your business to track them. Image Credits: AllTheRooms.com

With the updated API rules, each unique Instagram Business Account that you provide authorization for, is limited to 30 hashtags for tracking. This is a limit that Instagram has shared to enable a more controlled data-sharing environment.

It poses a few limitations, but also opportunities for brands and Business users to focus on what data truly matters the most.

*However, you can easily change these hashtags every week to ensure you are tracking more at intervals and are not only restricted to a fixed 30 hashtag limit.

To further expand this 30 hashtag list, do authenticate with other unique Business Account pages to get access to more data.

 

  1. CONTINUED SUPPORT & ANALYSIS

    Circus Social's 20/Twenty provides full support for Instagram
    Circus Social’s 20/Twenty provides full support for Instagram

    Although Instagram has applied a few imitations to the hashtags tracking per Business Account, other features such as below are still available in full and can still be easily accessed on 20/Twenty (This is possible as 20/Twenty is an approved Instagram data provider) :

    1. Tracking all owned Instagram Business page content as well as other Brands Business Posts that you can still track based on @handles you share
    2. All engagement metrics for these Instagram posts
    3. Continued analytics and insights for these Instagram posts
    4. Influencers on Instagram you have partnered with if they also share their authentication on 20/Twenty
    5. You can continue to tag, sort and further analyze Instagram data based on keywords on 20/Twenty

 

All in all, Circus Social is all geared to help you make the best of these Instagram updates and stay ahead in all your social tracking needs.

Have questions or want to learn more? Simply get in touch with us HERE or write to us at info@circussocial.com. You can also contact your Account Manager for a speedy response.

 

 

A New Penguin at Circus Social: My Perspective

My name is Durga and I have been working at Circus Social for about 4 months now as an Analyst in the Bangalore office. Prior to Circus Social, I worked as a Social Media Analyst at NTT DATA Services (formerly DELL Services).

Circus Social is growing quickly and has many interesting clients across automotive, insurance, government, financial services and other industries. As an Analyst in the research and social listening team, I conduct research and help uncover insights. This valuable, actionable information is presented in the form of social listening reports for our clients. It is an open working environment, where employee suggestions and ideas are always welcome. So far, it has been a great opportunity to apply my knowledge and improve my skills.

Circus Socials’ social listening tool 20/Twenty is powered by the latest technology and tracks multiple social media and news metrics. 20/Twenty’s powerful data capabilities, combined with a simple user interface helps marketers solve complex business problems.

We have a lot of fun in the Circus Social office and celebrate milestones and special occasions including birthdays.

Team lunches are a regular occurrence! We all have our favorite spots near the office :)
Team lunches are a regular occurrence! We all have our favourite spots near the office 🙂

 

As I was new to Bangalore a few months ago when I joined, the Circus Social team helped me settle in, find a place to stay – and even shared their favourite food spots!

Over the course of the first few weeks, I was taken through various induction programmes, introduced to the team and familiarised with processes.

 

Some of the Circus Social's lady penguins!
Some of the Circus Social’s lady penguins!

 

It has been a great experience working with Circus Social so far and I can’t wait to see what the future holds!

 

Social Listening Best Practices

Social listening is the process of monitoring social media channels for mentions of your brand, products, competitors and categories. Learn how following Social Listening Best Practices can help power your digital marketing strategy.

How do leading brands incorporate social listening to create successful digital campaigns?

Social Listening

 

1. They measure objectively

To leverage the power of social listening, it is imperative to understand the business and marketing objectives of the company. This ensures that the relevant topics are being tracked and social listening objectives are aligned to those of the broader business.

Social Listening

 

2. They know their audience

Successful brands listen to understand audience perceptions of their products and brand:

  • What is being said?
  • Where are they saying it?
  • Is the sentiment towards the brand positive, negative or neutral?
  • Are campaigns having the desired impact?

Is their messaging resonating with the target audience?

Social Listening

 

3. They look to understand the broader landscape

Looking beyond their own brands to understand category and industry trends provides companies with:

  • inspiration for content creation
  • early detection of threats to the brand/business
  • opportunities for growth

Social Listening

 

4. They have an ‘Always-On’ approach to brand tracking

Real-time monitoring provides an early warning system and helps companies manage crisis situations swiftly and decisively. Identifying detractor posts and responding quickly affords the maximum amount of time needed to implement contingency plans and ensures minimal damage to the brand. Successful brands don’t just listen during campaigns – they listen during the ‘quieter’ periods too.

Social Listening

 

5. They constantly benchmark against competitors

Social Listening helps brands learn what their competitors are doing and what people are saying about them online. This real-time intelligence allows companies to understand their own weaknesses, leverage competitor weaknesses and identify opportunities for growth.

Social Listening

 

6. They utilize data to inform business and marketing strategy

Social listening intelligence can be leveraged to achieve business and marketing objectives in the following ways:

  • Tailored messaging, delivered to target audiences via their preferred channel
  • Testing campaign effectiveness and adjusting campaigns accordingly to maximise performance.
  • Understanding pain points can shape product development, ensuring a better customer experience
  • Identify market entry opportunities

 

How can Circus Social help?

As leaders in the digital intelligence space, we empower brands with real-time insights through our social & news monitoring platform, 20/Twenty.

To find out more about Social Listening Best Practices, or book a demo click here

 

 

Data Science at Circus Social

Circus Social is brimming with social intelligence. With a vibrant and vastly talented group of Data Engineers, Data Scientists, and Data Analysts on board – we live and breathe analytics.

More recently, our machine learning capabilities for the 20/Twenty platform have benefitted from a decentralized and distributed structure.

Data Science at Circus Social

Our clients are often faced with a variety of marketing challenges – and we try to work hand-in-hand to find the most efficient way of tackling them. These could include finding solutions to ‘hard-problems‘ like real-time document clustering or- predicting a virality score for posts on social media.

There are also new challenges that occur with changing lifestyles and social media behavior like, automatically grouping similar videos uploaded by users based on different attributes including context, language and emotions where we have to tap in to specializations of both the science and the engineering teams have been only possible with the contribution of both the science and the engineering teams.

While our data science team has created magic with data, predictive and modeling techniques, our engineering team has helped maintain several terabytes of data and created effective machine learning pipelines.

Data Science at Circus SocialThe team’s latest project has been to develop and deploy a real-time document clustering functionality – allowing our clients to find viral content, identify trends and proactively react to crisis situations. The three main phases of this project are feature extraction and selection, document representation and clustering.  After having experimented with a lot of clustering algorithms with speed and cluster quality as the primary metric for evaluation we settled for a hybrid approach that used both K-means and agglomerative hierarchical clustering. K-means, because of its run-time efficiency and agglomerative hierarchical clustering because of the cluster quality. While our initial motivation was to find similar conversations in a given geographical area, we have also started using it to recommend conversations and articles the user is most interested in.

Data Science at Circus Social

At Circus Social, promoting the best ideas not only pampers our love for an open culture but also helps drive an innovative culture that constantly challenges the status quo. As a social media analytics company, we have developed a similar wavelength for Data Science.

From where it all began in the early days of social listening-, to today’s culmination of intelligence, data science & machine learning-, we are truly excited at the possibilities of what the future of 20/Twenty holds for us, our team and our clients.

Why Social Listening for Luxury Brands?

Why Is Social Listening So Crucial For Luxury Brands?


There are more than 1,000,000 engagements about the luxury space occurring every day in the social media and digital ecosystem.

This is where word-of-mouth takes the form of reviews, customer support is expected in real-time and where brand messaging and consumer communications play a very strong role. Hence, this is exactly why listening and actively tracking what consumers share about your brand matters the most.

Luxury merchandise, spanning across jewelry, cosmetics, apparel, automotive to even custom designed furniture and handmade electronics – all have a consumer base that’s actively conducting research and contemplating their high-end purchases online.

More than a million mentions daily on luxury products

This is also where consumer conversations left untracked can take a turn for the worse.

BRAND SENTIMENT GONE WRONG CAN HAVE IRREVERSIBLE DAMAGE

To share an example, Burberry recently faced extreme criticism online for destroying a great deal of merchandise to avoid it being sold at a lower cost. This resulted in high volumes of negative consumer sentiment and criticism online via blogs, forums and even on the brand’s own online properties such as its Facebook page.

Burberry gone wrong

The news and negative sentiment around this matter continue to spread and this could potentially result in a loss of millions for the brand, if not addressed well in time.

Such instances can cause an irreversible damage to your brand perception by consumers if not dealt with immediately and with the right messaging.

BE AT THE FOREFRONT OF WHAT YOUR CONSUMERS ARE SAYING – AND TURN THEM INTO POSITIVE OPPORTUNITIES

 

By actively tracking consumer sentiments and receiving real-time alerts, you can preemptively prepare for customer service issues, brand reputation incidents and­­ communicate well to your audience. ­­­

Identifying what these conversations are all about is not the only aspect that is crucial, but also understanding where audiences are engaging the most and exchanging their views.


Identify where conversations are taking place

IDENTIFY WHERE YOUR CONSUMERS ENGAGE ONLINE – LEVERAGE THESE PLATFORMS

Luxury automotive brand, BMW, known for its innovativeness and performance, has consistently engaged its consumers. This is done frequently online via various digital touchpoints, immersive website experiences and digital campaigns such as the Z4 AR campaign and the recent “Eyes on Gigi” campaign.
These initiatives not only engage consumers online but also fortify the luxury car brand’s perceptions among its consumers.


BMWs EyesOnGigi campaign

Another luxury beauty retailer, SKII Japan, leveraged online discussions to create a futuristic in-store experience. The experience, called SKII Future X, allowed consumers to feel, touch and experience their SKII products in a unique way including skin scanners and personalized skin maintenance recommendations.


SKII FutureX experiential store

DISCOVER AUDIENCE GROUPS & THEIR PREFERENCES

Understanding the digital behavior of your consumers and understanding who & what they engage with, is necessary to ensure you are creating content that resonates.

They also offer you a means to discover new audience groups, identify current gaps and opportunities and discover which features or attributes they care about most.


Identify audiences and influencers

With 20/Twenty, our next-gen social monitoring solution, Kinder was able to dive deep into the chocolate industry and discover insights about what consumers felt about Kinder products. The brand was not only able to identify key chocolate consumption moments but also how other chocolate brands like Ferrero and Cadbury were being perceived by consumers. This allowed Kinder to create effective and memorable content for moms and teenagers, that was differentiated, targeted and built ground-up from real consumer insights.

THERE’S MORE TO DISCOVER WITH SOCIAL LISTENING – EXPLORE THEM HERE!

 

Increasing access to digital intelligence for entire organizations is our biggest challenge

Interview with Prerna Pant, General Manager at Circus Social, a social listening and analysis company based in Singapore.

Hi Prerna, what is your background and what is included in your current role at Circus Social?

You could describe me as a storyteller; I started telling stories for brands very early in my career – and I have continued to do so till today. I’m a Co-Founder and General Manager at Circus Social. My role includes business development, operations, marketing and client management – and spans across all our products and offerings.

What differs Circus Social from other media intelligence companies in APAC?

To start with – we’re a company that was built ground up by marketers, for marketers. Too often we find that solutions are made for marketers by those who have not walked in those shoes before – and we wanted to change that. Secondly, we’re an Asia-first martech company. We were born and bred in Asia – meaning that we specialize in the APAC region in terms of language, sentiment, source and local coverage throughout the region, including Myanmar, Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia, Philippines, Japan, Korea and more, and have a local grasp on culture and online behavior.

What are your greatest challenges ahead at Circus Social when it comes to serving your customer analysis and developing your offer?

I think we face many of the same challenges that our competitors face in terms of data access, features and innovation. But personally – I believe the biggest challenge for us lies in increasing access to the world of digital intelligence – and taking it from the marketers’ ecosystem to the entire organization.

If any, what specific needs are there in your region for media intelligence that you think may differ from the rest of the world?

The greatest one is localization; this goes far beyond just language and platforms. The way in which consumers share product reviews on Pantip in Thailand is massively different from how Koreans behave on Naver, and it is the job of digital intelligence companies to identify and capitalize on this for our clients.

Do you find the region diverse in the sense that it is challenging to offer comprehensive products and services throughout the region? If so, in what way?

Each market comes with its own challenges, but I think that’s what makes it more exciting to work in this region. We have to keep learning, keep innovating and continue to challenge the status quo in each market. The initial entry into each market is typically the one we have to get right first, and once the foundation has been laid, it’s essential that we don’t drop the ball and continue to offer solutions that match the needs and nuances of each market.

Can you provide a specific example where one (or more) of your clients has made changes based on the insights or analysis you provided them? 

There are many capabilities that our platform, 20/Twenty, provides, ranging from crisis monitoring and campaign tracking, to consumer behavior and insights. I’ve found that getting that right from the very beginning and being a partner to your clients instead of being a service provider is what makes that difference.

We’ve worked with automobile brands that found that crisis situations were growing differently on social platforms vs. media sources – identified through custom features on 20/Twenty that allow you to track trending content by source type, spikes in conversations and specialized data tagging – and hence, they could easily measure actions and address problems once discovering this.

In a completely different setting, we helped an Asian supermarket understand why ‘mommy shoppers’ were declining rapidly through social listening on parenting forums and review sites. The main reason was that the width of the aisles in their grocery stores was too narrow to fit a pram – and hence aggravated mothers were dissuading others from shopping at their outlets.

The applications are obviously endless – it’s about getting to the insights quickly and more effectively.

Have you recently, or are you about to, release any new technology-based solutions that will add on to or improve services you offer your clients? If so, what solutions, and how will your customers benefit from them?

We have a lot of exciting features from a tech standpoint that will position us to be the leaders in viral content predictability and influencer identification. These are based on client requests and feedback, as is much of our tech roadmap.

When it comes to licensing content for media monitoring in your region, which countries are the most progressive and which are lagging behind?

Although we see this changing rapidly, markets such as Singapore, Hong Kong and Australia are certainly more comfortable and advanced with licensing data properly. This is feeding into other markets, such as Myanmar and Vietnam very quickly, and with early adopters setting the standard that new markets can follow.

Which social platforms are the most important to your clients, and which ones do you see as having the most potential in the future when it comes to gathering relevant information for your customers?

The importance of platforms changes by client, use case and industry; however, I also truly believe that you can’t ignore any of them today as conversations and people are very interlinked. For example, if your use case is reputation management – you must realize that a crisis can break anywhere, anytime. Similarly, I also always tell my clients that campaign periods aren’t the only time that consumers talk about you – it’s important to be ‘always on.’

When it comes to the actual data behind the media intelligence you do, what kind of data or media that you don’t currently use for media intelligence today, can be interesting in the future?

Expanding on image and video recognition and applying that to a variety of platforms is certainly interesting for us. We also see great potential in audience segmentation and predictive technology.

By Renata Ilitsky

 

This article originally appeared on Twingly’s Blog: https://blog.twingly.com/2018/06/20/increasing-access-to-digital-intelligence/

Intro to Social Media Listening

Introduction to Social Media Listening

Introduction to Social Media Listening

Catching up with friends, finding a soulmate, researching products and shopping, complaining about the things they hate – people are integrating digital into every aspect of their lives. According to We are Social’s Digital in 2018 report, Asia Pacific is home to over 2 billion internet users – and growing rapidly. The number of social media users across the region has grown 14% to roughly 1.7 billion users. Given the continued growth of active social media users, brands must do everything they can to understand the digital behavior of their customers and be proactive with their marketing strategies.

What is Social Media Listening?

Social media listening, also known as social media monitoring or social media intelligence is the process of monitoring specific brand terms, products, competitors or themes and categories that are important to your business. This serves as a valuable tool that can be used to provide a deeper understanding of what’s being said about your brand, your products, your competitors, your category as well as provide actionable insights that can be incorporated into your digital marketing strategy.,

Why you should be Tracking Social

Learn More about your Audience

In order to successfully reach your target audience, you must first know where to find them. Social listening allows brands to find out which social media channels have the highest number of related mentions so that brands can focus their time and effort on the right channel.

Track Campaign Performance

Brands are often worried that their campaigns are not resonating with their customers. Social listening allows brands to track their campaigns so that they are able to see consumer conversations happening in real time on social media.

Depending on consumer reactions to specific campaigns, brands can adapt and make the necessary changes dynamically to ensure a more successful outcome based on objectives.

Build Stronger Relationships with your Customers

With the advent of social media, consumers are increasingly utilizing it as a platform to voice their issues and complaints (for example, product reviews or posts on a brand’s Facebook page if they are experiencing a problem).

A “listening ear” on the ground increases a brands awareness of issues surrounding their products or services. Identifying customer pain points allows brands to adjust their customer service, product or messaging – resulting in a better experience for their customers.

Tracking and Benchmarking Competitors

Knowing your enemy is half the battle won. Social listening helps brands know what people are saying about their competitors online. This allows you to leverage any weaknesses that your competitors are having or develop timely responses to any competitor campaigns that are going viral. You can also benchmark your page, brand or campaign performance with competitors, and identify opportunities for growth.

Crisis Management and Prevention

Managing crisis situations swiftly and decisively is of utmost importance. Social listening allows you to set real time alerts to receive warning of any negative sentiment around your brand. This gives you the ability to identify detractor posts and respond quickly – ensuring minimal damage to the brand.

This early warning system also affords you the maximum amount of time needed to implement contingency plans, if required.

Getting started on your Social Listening Journey

Now that you are ready to start listening, you will need a dedicated social listening platform.

At Circus Social – we are leaders in the digital intelligence space, empowering brands with real-time insights through our social & news monitoring platform, 20/Twenty.
What clients love about 20/Twenty:

– Easy, intuitive design, providing full image & video tracking

– Asian language support including 140 languages across more than 40 countries

– Offline & online news tracking with Dow Jones Factiva

– The ability to track customer intent including leads and decision-making behaviour

– The ability to track by geolocation and latitude & longitude

To find out more, or book a demo click here.