Hope Norman is the Senior Digital Researcher and an Innovation Consultant at Seek Company. She conducts social media and digital research for client projects and campaigns.
We met with Hope to learn more about how she uses social data for digital research.
Infegy: How would you describe Seek Company in a couple sentences?
Hope: Seek is a research and innovation consultancy agency. We have been around for 15 years and focus on insights, ideas, human sciences, and storytelling. We have a department that specializes in anthropology, neuroscience, psychology, and sociology to help consultants add the human experience into data insights.
Infegy: How did you get involved at Seek?
Hope: I interned at Seek in the Summer of 2010 when digital was new to the agency and spent that summer helping develop the digital research department.
I came back to Seek in January 2012. When I came back, the digital department needed some love and attention so it could continue to grow.
After six months, things started to take off, and in 2013 it was the fastest-growing department in the company.
The main part of my job is to take a qualitative look at big data and tell consumer stories. I do this by looking through social data to see what consumers are saying about any given topic.
Infegy: What is the biggest challenge you have faced with using social data?
Hope: Social media and using social data is such a changing landscape that it is hard to stay on top of everything. The challenge is figuring out how to stay on top of trends and still execute daily tasks because there is still work to do.
One thing I have been trying to do is train other people at Seek on social research methodology so they can have a more diverse skillset, while also doing more traditional research myself. I want a broad range of expertise so I can understand the best ways to integrate digital into our research process.
Infegy: Do you have a process for analyzing social data when you are working on a project?
Hope: My process starts with getting fully immersed in the data.
I start by pulling post verbatims, theming them appropriately for the direction of my research, and then reporting them. I do it this way because my favorite moments with data are when I am presenting to a client and I can tell the story behind a post, but I can only do that by spending time with the data.
Infegy: What advice would you give to someone who is just starting to use social data?
Hope: Don’t let the quantity overwhelm you, and never lose sight of the human element in all the data. These are real people who are putting their stories and opinions online, which is what makes digital so powerful. You are not asking people to give their opinions--they are gifting them to you.
Infegy: What is one of your favorite projects that you have worked on?
Hope: I did a project for a food and beverage company. It was one of the first brands I worked with that believed in social listening. They wanted to learn about diabetes, and they wanted as much breadth and depth as possible.
Type 2 diabetes is not one size fits all disease. For example, the foods they eat may affect their blood sugar differently.
Social data gave me the stories behind people’s frustrations with companies and products. There was a lot of power in being able to tell my client the consumer frustrations and how they felt they were being treated by different companies within the industry. Ultimately, I was able to tell this client how to approach diabetes and encourage them to look at the disease with a broader lens.
Infegy: What other tools are in your research toolkit?
Hope: I use Pinterest, but I use it a little differently than one might think. I create secret Pinterest boards for clients. I do this when I am struggling to figure out the consumer language around a topic. This helps me figure out keywords and searches for my research, but it also adds color to the report because the client can see the actual board I made to help them visualize what people are saying.
We wanted to thank Hope again for sitting down with us to talk about how she uses Infegy Atlas for extracting social insights in her daily work.
Like this post? Let us know on Twitter! We think you'll enjoy this one, too: