BuzzLogic calculates social media influence

Summary:BuzzLogic hopes to solve one of the riddles of the Web--who is influential within the millions of conversations taking place in social Web, especially blogs. I have been following the progress of BuzzLogic for a few years.

BuzzLogic hopes to solve one of the riddles of the Web--who is influential within the millions of conversations taking place in social Web, especially blogs. I have been following the progress of BuzzLogic for a few years. Mitch Ratcliffe, an old friend who also blogs for ZDNet is a co-founder and continues to evangelize for the company. BuzzLogic started out mapping the connections among bloggers in a visual array, but has morphed into a potentially powerful tool for gaining insight into who wields influence, which can determine the fate of products, brands and reputations.

Delivered as an on demand software service, BuzzLogic looks at content relevance, using full text analysis; the number of messages from a certain publisher over time; traffic, including users referred by influencers and total number of pages views; and attention to messages via link analysis, including temporal data and total number of inbound links.

It indexes 7,300 mainstream media sources, social media sites and corporate site as a basis for its applying its algorithms, said Robert Schettino, BuzzLogic chief marketer.  BuzzLogic has a "reach" calculation, which shows how many sites a blog relevantly reaches on a specific subject. "By calculating influence on the fly and who merits attention, advertising support can be directed at any given moment based on relative influence," Schettino said. "It's also away for bloggers to monetize their content."


In a nutshell, for BuzzLogic an influencer is defined as a "post or publisher generating a significant volume of relevant inbound links and comments about a particular topic or conversation, within a specific timeframe."

Beta tester David Churbuck, vice president, of Global Web Marketing for Lenovo, provides a press release quote, saying that BuzzLogic "promises to do for brand communications and customer satisfaction, public relations and press relations what Web metrics have done for online advertising.”
BuzzLogic does appear to fill a gap in extracting useful statistics out of the growing body of social media (mostly blogs), including mapping which influencers are influencing other influencers in near real time.

Pricing for the service will be "disruptive," Schettino told me, starting at $500 per month to track 20 conversations (queries), 25 influencers deep. The product is currently going through a second phase of beta testing. In addition, the company plans to publish APIs that will hook into external business intelligence applications.

BuzzLogic is not alone in pursuing influencer metrics--companies such as Nielsen BuzzMetrics and Cymphony are also measuring influence by trolling the social media space. The real test for BuzzLogic will be the degree of accuracy and currency produced by its algorithms and index. "As we look at posts, we are providing some context to what makes a site or individual influential over time. The system architecture has to be sensitive and changes over time," said Todd Parsons,  executive vice president of products. Spam could also be a problem. "We are cross checking blogs to verify and parsing out a few things," said Parsons said. "Cues from blogs indicate they are part of a trust network and we limit the index to those, so we get a higher quality and large index."

If you want to understand better the role of influence and attention in shaping opinion, read this post from Mitch. Here is a sample:

Influence, like gravity, is the mechanism that moves the networked market. The mass of planets account for gravity, the work of people produces influence. How people take raw data, in the form of attention or preferences, and make value isn't fully explained, but it is measurable today and will continue to be more accessible to our analysis in the future. 

Topics: Social Enterprise

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