April 7, 2010

PeopleBrowsr: Find and act on Twitter conversations

PeopleBrowsr: Follow conversations about you or a topic from JD Lasica on Vimeo.


Service offers free monitoring, paid campaigns & analytics

JD LasicaAn increasing number of businesses and nonprofits understand that there are valuable conversations taking place about their brands and organizations that they need to tap into — it’s hard to hold a conversation if you don’t know who’s talking, what they’re saying or where they’re saying it.

Where, then, do you turn without spending thousands of dollars a month on a monitoring service?

One impressive solution I’ve been working with recently is PeopleBrowsr, based in Sydney and San Francisco. They bill themselves as a data mining, analytics and brand engagement company that offers deep stats on your products or causes, campaigns to identify your key influencers and customized reports that assess consumer sentiment.

I recently met Priscilla Scala, product manager for PeopleBrowsr, who explains the main features of the free service in this short video interview. The premium service includes campaigns and analytics and should be of interest to a lot of companies and nonprofits that can’t afford a Radian6, Nielsen Buzzmetrics or Visible Technologies. Whether you’re a business, a nonprofit, an individual or an organization, you can use PeopleBrowsr to track conversations about any topic — for free.

Watch, embed or download my 9-minute video interview with Priscilla on Vimeo

One advantage PeopleBrowsr has over the competition: They store all Twitter conversations on their servers for at least a year, providing a baseline and historical information about a topic or trend. They also store MySpace conversations and pull out the conversations relevant to your organization.

Mechanical Turk as a fact-checking apparatus

PeopleBrowsr has run campaigns for Comcast Entertainment Group, tech companies and photo companies. One of the most fascinating aspects of PeopleBrowsr’s analytics is their use of Amazon’s Mechanical Turk to analyze sentiment. Automated approaches to measure the effectiveness of an advertising campaign or social media campaign are often ineffective because the algorithms don’t understand sarcasm, irony or slang, Priscilla says. So PeopleBrowsr turns to Mechanical Turk members for a low-cost human solution that improves the accuracy of monitoring.

When “turks” — often young people or workers in developing countries — play online games, they want to win virtual goods, like “a magical sword, a new gown, a superpower,” she says. To do that, they have to perform a small job like this: Read these 10 tweets and tell us if they’re positive or negative for Coke or Virgin America. PeopleBrowsr runs it past three turks and if they all agree on the intent of the person’s tweet, the job is finished. If not, they run it again until they have an 80 percent consensus.

Interesting, no? You’ll be seeing lots of companies paying for services in virtual goods in the years ahead.

I’m in love with PeopleBrowsr’s multi-column dashboard, which offers a sleek, integrated approach to monitoring, mapping, analytics and campaigns. (For a fee they build custom dashboards that help organizations identify keywords and zero in on relevant covnersations.) Test-drive this baby, or do a search at http://pb.ly/

PeopleBrowsr isn’t a general-purpose web browser, like IE or Firefox, but it’s a good way to “browse” people and conversations on selected social networks — and you can use it within the Firefox, Safari or Chrome browsers.


PeopleBrowsr Centralizes Conversations & Relationships: Introduces A Dashboard for Social Networks (briansolis.com)
JD Lasica, founder of Socialmedia.biz, is now co-founder of the cruise discovery engine Cruiseable. See his About page, contact JD or follow him on Twitter or Google Plus.

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One thought on “PeopleBrowsr: Find and act on Twitter conversations

  1. Twitter made an answer app. Write on twitter @linkati “question” and you will get the answers on your twitter account! So cool!