You say #PancakeDay, I say #FatTuesday

Our newsfeeds have been awash with carb-loading ideas this week as we celebrated  #PancakeDay also known as #MardiGras #FatTuesday, #PaczkiDay, #Paczki,  or #ShroveTuesday, and if that wasn’t enough carb-loading it was also #NationalPizzaDay and #NationalBagelDay in the US. With well over 111,000 tweets (and that’s just in the English language) and before we’ve even looked at other content types and platforms, the digital space is brimming with foodie content.

Through all this noise, many organizations hope to find the right conversations to identify actionable insight through their social listening efforts. But the big question is are they able to gather the right kind of insight to help with their business objectives?

Right now more than half of the global populations is online – with over 3 billion of us online and millions of conversations happening in real-time, finding the right conversations can be problematic. In order to really listen in, first you’ve got to get under the skin of your audience to understand the context of the discussion. Can your social listening analysts understand the culture and more importantly distinguish tone, irony and sentiment within your desired location or region?

Here in Blighty, we celebrate Shrove Tuesday and chat using the hashtag #PancakeDay, while our friends in the US celebrate with #MardiGras and #FatTuesday. The nuance of language matters if you want to really hear and understand the discussions and engage with your demographic. 

We also have to continually pay attention to the way we communicate, textspeak and words are being replaced for the emoji, picture and video. Vast amount of conversations happen online through a set of symbols or a 20 second video reel. Picture and video sharing will continue to be the content we engage with most and want to share in our networks.

We will need to think fast about how to capture this visual insight; especially as technology advances and consumers continue to find new ways to talk and new platforms to talk on. #PancakeDay alone is a good example of creative image rich content that won’t have been tagged.

And if that wasn’t enough, we also have to prepare for new markets and regional dialects of languages jumping in to the online conversation. With the populations of  Africa, Asia and South America embracing new social platforms and having conversations in their native tongue. We will need not only to understand and grasp a vast range of languages and dialects but also find new ways to break through cultural context of new demographics of population groups. The potential to tap into new markets provides endless possibilities  but the question remains do organizations have the right social listening tools and the right analysts with the skillsets needed to really hear what’s being said?