Chatterbox Analytics Launches Private Beta and Cuts Through Social Network Noise

By November 17, 2011

It’s noisy in the social media jungle

In the drive to truly digitalize the real world, hundreds of millions of us world wide have signed on to social networks. With the migration from desktop to smartphones, we are ever more connected, the environments whereby we have our conversations are now as much in the online world as the offline world.

We talk online, we shop online, we read news online, we listen to music online and we even start dating online. This might be why the online world has got pretty noisy the last few years. It’s now a jungle out there.

Large corporations, with brand names to promote and uphold, are only just starting to make sense of really making the leap into social media. Many have invested millions, and many will continue to invest millions. Most companies with a sound strategy know that this money is wasted if these brands don’t connect effectively in this environment. Chatterbox Analytics may have a solution.Dr. Stuart Battersby is the co-founder and CTO of Chatterbox, a spin-off startup from Queen Mary University in London, and along with co-founder Dr. Matthew Purver, they are launching their private beta to corporate clients in London. I caught up with Dr. Battersby by phone as he was walking to a Tech City UK event.

Unlike most ‘social media monitoring’ tools, Chatterbox Analytics is grounded in academic research, making sense of social networks and the vast amounts of deep data platforms like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn produce every second of the day. This software allows brands to search through keywords and cut through the noise of our social chatter. Brands need to know who is talking about them, who is leading the conversation, and who is following.

Screen shot of Chatterbox software tracking social networking conversations

The first edition of Google’s online magazine in January 2011, Think Quarterly, and a McKinsey Quarterly report in May both concur that the next virgin wilderness for blue chip corporations, complete with opportunities we’ve not yet imagined, is the world of data. Social networks contribute a vast amount of that raw data, and therefore gaining not only a foothold in that environment, but finding a way to use that data before competitors do would give brands an advantage. This is where Chatterbox comes in, supported by QMInnovations– Queen Mary’s commercial entity, which like many universities is keen to support innovation.
This writer’s academic background is in the arts and humanities. In that field ideas are never ‘proven,’ merely argued for, then against, recycled, and possibly showing up again as a vogue new concept, radically altering the dialogue. The same can happen with brand names and reputations. However, the world of data makes sense of our human shifts, moods, alternating and irrational patterns. Analytics tools connect those worlds, making our everyday conversations quantifiable and thus allows clients of Chatterbox to implement a strategy to make sense of the noise.

The challenge, like in any conversation, is proving that it works. Amongst the noise of startups and digital media companies, and a wealth of competitors, as Dr Battersby confirmed, Chatterbox needs to make its voice heard. In this case, simply wanting to sort out the cacophony of voices in our social networking environs could be the way forward for this startup.