One of the most interesting points made at Monitoring Social Media 09 last month was the suggestion from Matthäus Krzykowski (VentureBeat) that monitoring could be made more accurate by narrowing the focus of the tools down to a specific industry. It stands to reason really. If you narrow down the lexicon you start to reduce the opportunities for error. For example, if you’re talking within the telecoms industry, “Orange” is likely to mean the mobile operator, rather than the fruit or the colour. By focusing in this way, Matthäus claimed companies could dramatically improve the accuracy of certain key attributes of social media monitoring tools, such as sentiment detection.
The announcement then that MediMix is launching a social media monitoring tool targeted at the pharmaceutical, medical device and biotech industries looks like proof that this logic holds. ScanBuzz™ is already being used to monitor the top 200 products and 100 corporate brands and, in industries where consumer scare stories can be fatal, a quick, informed response could save these companies millions if not billions. Expect to see more of these niche tools launching in 2010. There it is – my first prediction for the coming year!