Nexalogy’s Naomi Goldapple shows Montreal Girl Geeks how data fuels creativity

Naomi Goldapple, a seasoned IBM technology and business consultant turned entrepreneur turned Nexalogy‘s Queen of Business Development, was the speaker at last Wednesday’s Montreal Girl Geeks event. She talked about how we are now overwhelmed with data, both by its numbers and its complexity, yet how this data fuels better decision-making and more creativity.

She introduced the 4 essential steps in order to make sense of it all: collecting data, cleaning data, analysing data, and presenting the results. The “cleaning” (structuring, sculpting) of data is only made possible thanks to teams of engineers who code the hard stuff, as well as the brand new field of “social data scientists”, or as we like to call them at Nexalogy, AnthropoMath Guys/Gals. These folks have an understanding of human behaviour from fields such as Sociology, Political Science, Semiotics, History, and Anthropology, which are essential to interpreting the magnitude of social data.

A plethora of tools exist which enable the average joe to become their very own data scientist. Nexalogy offers 2 free tools, NexaMe and NexaSearch, which, since their inception in 2012, continue to be among the most popular free apps in Hootsuite’s App Store. NexaMe analyses the people you follow while NexaSearch analyses a hashtag or search term, and then displays the concepts people are talking about, the most shared links, the key influencers, and so on.

Here is the short (2.5 min) PwC video re. finding the needle in the social media haystack:

This video is a great example of step #4: presenting data such that it can be easily digested, and extra brownie points if it’s pretty too. After all, it wouldn’t be very kind on one’s non-analyst-trained eyes (or sanity) to pour through raw data, row after row in Excel. Though as Nexalogy’s founder Claude Théoret once said, “big data is when it can’t fit in an Excel sheet“, i.e. > 200,000 lines, which would prove infinitely harder a job. Goldapple had a few suggestions on how to present data beautifully – since the content is creative, why shouldn’t it look creative as well?

Here are some examples of how one can display data using D3, in this case, on top of our restful API:

The second tool Goldapple suggested was Infoactive, a fellow Montreal-based company which transforms live data into interactive, mobile-friendly infographics.

Thank you for having us, Montreal Girl Geeks - it’s initiatives like these that help stomp out stereotypes, eradicate barriers, and remind that there’s nothing stopping you from from joining the force that is #womenintech #womeninSTEM (might I add that there’s nothing cooler too). Nexalogy is proud to boast almost 40%  girl geeks - follow us and watch that number grow.

NexaLive: A social deep listening microsite you can create, publish and share

Twitter hashtags and other searches can move quickly, making it hard to see the bigger picture. This is especially true with conferences, events, news stories and other fast moving topics. People want to understand the overall trends and insights, rather than stare at the infinite scroll.

That’s why we built NexaLive, which is available today. It delivers deep listening and social media analytics in one easy-to-use, simplified dashboard. It’s simple to set up, and requires no training or time-consuming data analysis to get results.

A NexaLive can be kept private or published and shared publicly to offer a real-time Twitter dashboard for an event or conference.

websumnmit

One section of a NexaLive that has been set up for the Web Summit in Dublin.

Automated Insights

You provide up to three hashtags/search terms, and NexaLive instantly creates a real-time microsite with engaging data visualizations and information. It gives event organizers, marketers, and social media managers a powerful, automated way to extract, store and visualize data about a specific Twitter hashtag or search. Use NexaLive to:

  • Monitor and display Twitter activity during a conference or other event.
  • Follow and analyze news events.
  • Monitor what people are saying about your brand or product.
  • Track competitors and issues of importance to your business.

“Not everyone needs or has access to a data scientist or deep listening platform to help them dig in and understand the people, content, hashtags and concepts that matter about an event, discussion or search,” said Claude Théoret, founder and CEO of Nexalogy. “Nexalive does that instantly and in real-time.” Here are some NexaLives in action:

NexaLive Features

Screen Shot 2014-11-03 at 2.24.02 PM

More of the data available from a NexaLive.

Every NexaLive includes:

  • Interactive Interest Maps that visualize trending and emerging concepts.
  • A ranked list of the most active, engaged and retweeted people.
  • Visualizations of the top words and top hashtags being used, based on your search term(s).
  • The ability to drill down to view the related tweets on the Interest Map, and among the top words and top hashtags.
  • A list of top links being shared.
  • The ability to customize the page by uploading a logo, and adding in descriptive text.
  • The option to sort activity by last hour or last day. (Based on the 10,000 most recent tweets.)
  • An easy-to-use filtering system that let’s you refine your searches and clean out unwanted terms.
  • Simplified monthly billing.
  • Ongoing capture of data based on your search, which can be used for detailed analysis using the NexaMaster data analysis platform.

Nexalive builds on the success of Nexalogy’s free NexaMe and Hootsuite apps, which offer free analysis of a person’s Twitter network. The Nexlaogy Hootsuite app was recently listed as number one on Hootsuite’s list of “10 Essential Social Media Tools for Social Media Managers.” NexaLive expands that functionality and enables professionals to target any hashtag or search term on an ongoing basis.

NexaLive is available now with prices starting at $40 per month.

Three ways social data can help the CreativeMornings community continue its breakneck growth

CreativeMornings is a fast growing global community that organizes monthly lectures aimed at the creative community. Each month, volunteer organizers in 99 cities around the world select a local speaker that fits with a common theme. The goal is to ”celebrate a city’s creative talent” and to “promote an open space to connect with like-minded individuals.”

Nexalogy founder and CEO Claude Theoret spoke about black holes at one of the first CreativeMornings meetings in Montreal, and since then we’ve worked with CreativeMornings headquarters in New York to analyze the social media data from close to a year of meetings.

We presented our findings and recommendations at the very first CreativeMornings Summit, which brought together organizers from over 30 countries,.

Below are three key insights we extracted about their community, using the NxLive data analysis platform. We also identified three related opportunities to help their community evolve and grow.

1. Keep Moving From Caveman to Community

Our first look at CreativeMornings (CM) data covered February to the end of April of this year. One interesting thing that jumped out right away was the shape of their network.

We generated an Interaction Map that shows how different entities (in this case individual and CM city accounts on Twitter) are connected to each other within the CreativeMornings community, based on their use of CM hastags.

The first Interaction Map looked like this:

Caveman network

Caveman network

 

That’s example of what network scientists call a “caveman network.” Each of the clusters shown above represents the mini network of a different CM city. It means that each of the cities is something of a community unto themselves. They’re off in their own “cave” and aren’t connected. The only point of connection is the main CreativeMornings account.

Simply put, in the early part of this year, CreativeMornings was a collection of discreet city networks. It wasn’t one community.

We looked at the Interaction Map again after gathering data from May to September. The change was remarkable:

A community

A community

This is more of a community, rather than a caveman network.

We see that CreativeMornings HQ is still at the center, but the caves for each city have largely been abandoned in favor of a more connected community. It’s remarkable progress.

Now, that’s not to say there isn’t still work to be done…

The Opportunity: Cities can still be much better better connected with each other, and the Summit in New York was a perfect way to forge in-person connections that can result in a closer digital community, and more coordination between chapters. We encouraged chapter organizers to learn from each other, and to figure out ways to cross-promote content and events in cities that are in the same state, province, or nearby country.

2. The CreativeMornings Experience Should Be Deliciously Creative

As part of our work, we  analyzed the top hashtags, the most engaged Twitter accounts, and the top concepts that people spoke about. That data told us which chapters were doing a great job on social media, and on Twitter in particular.

But to understand what makes for a great CreativeMornings experience, we had to dig a deeper and look at the content people were creating and sharing while at the event. What moved them to tweet, to post to Facebook and to Tumblr? And what did they talk about?

Speakers were key. “Speaker” was in fact the third most talked about concept in the data from May to September. That was to be expected, but over and again we saw that one of things that moved people to share and talk about their CM experience was food.

When a chapter did something special with the food and coffee — breakfast tacos, anyone? — it resulted in engagement and appreciation. Food is an important part of the CM experience. We saw this over and again, with tweets and Tumblr posts pouring in when something delicious was on offer.

On that note, here’s a sample of some of the food offerings that attendees deemed photo-worthy:

food3

food5

The Opportunity: Invest in the small things that can create engagement and shareable moments. The overall CM experience is a combination of everything: the speaker, the venue, the food, and even small touches like name tags and other items of surprise and delight. Focusing on the totality of the event changes CM from a lecture series to an experience. This helps grow the online community, and increase the happiness of existing members.

3. Make Time for the Time Between Events

CreativeMornings are a monthly breakfast lecture event. That’s the core of the experience, and we saw it reflected in the overall pattern of discussion on social media. Here’s the Twitter activity graph for the first few months of the year:

timeline1

The peaks come when cities hold their monthly events.  The valleys are the rest of the time, with small bumps when chapters announce the details of their next event.

We saw a similar pattern from May to September:

timeline2

There are more peaks during the more recent period because cities are no longer all holding their event on the same Friday of the month. There are multiple Fridays with events.

This data tells us that as of today CreativeMornings is very much an occasion, rather than an ongoing conversation. As a result, a lot of the social conversation has to do with getting tickets, scheduling, locations etc. It peaks and recedes. There is little, if any, talk in between meetings, aside from chapters announcing and promoting the next talks.

The Opportunity: CreativeMornings can build a constant, active community on social media by having a virtual event that continues all month long. the starting point for this is CM’s massive library of video from recent and past talks, as well as photos and other content. It’s a perfect catalyst to help kickstart online engagement. Videos from around the world can be shared from local accounts, sparking discussion and further connecting chapters to each other. Suddenly, the theme truly lasts all month long, and CreativeMornings is more than once a month — it’s all the time.