It seems like quite an unusual comparison, to be told that your product is “like wallpaper.” Truth be told, we weren’t even sure if it was a compliment. To find out, Unmetric CEO, Lux Narayan caught up with the person that made that comparison: Larry Cohen, SVP of Performance Analytics at Reprise Digital.
In this wide ranging discussion, Larry talks about how he helps CMOs talk the vernacular of the CFOs (dollars!), why QSR is one of the most cut-throat industries, and how access to Unmetric’s historical data helped turn around the social media performance of the US Open.
Reprise Digital is a client of Unmetric. It uses the Analyze platform to bring together data from all the social channels to one place in order to optimize the social strategies of its clients.
A transcript of the video is given below.
Lux Narayan: I’m Lux Narayan, CEO and co-founder of Unmetric and welcome to our series of what we like to call: Unterviews. We obviously have this penchant for adding the word “un” to a lot of things we do.
I’m especially delighted with today’s conversation, it’s with Larry Cohen, who’s the SVP of performance analytics at Reprise Digital. So I think a good way to kick it off would be a quick introduction and for the folks that are not familiar, a little bit more about Reprise and your own role within Reprise would be super.
Larry Cohen: Thank you, so within performance analytics, it’s really about bringing social media data into and re-imagining the entire digital eco-system.
We’re trying to solve the biggest problem on the CFOs profit and loss sheet, which is discretionary spend and marketing spend. And how do we bring data to justify and inform, and provide attribution for that.
With mobile being the device and social being the platform, and search being how you buy stuff, we are commands away from consuming and buying stuff. And bringing together that entire experience and all those capabilities under one roof makes sense because that’s where the consumer is looking to purchase items, spending their time, and as it’s said, to understand the consumer, know where they spend their time and where they are spending their money.
Where I see Unmetric being part of this solution is being able to harness all these social media eco-systems together, bringing them together and putting the quantification on top of it. And then, I can take that data and transform it into the data stories that I need to help my stakeholders, the CMOs, then be able to translate into the dollars, which is the vernacular of the CFOs. And so Unmetric is part of the solution.
Lux: You said our objective as a company is to aim to be like wallpaper. If I got that right, your justification for that is you need to be ubiquitous in terms of usage, but at the same time you need to be so integrated into the workflow you are literally part of the background.
Larry: In Reprise Digital, it is about being seamlessly integrated into the consumer journey. And so, when I say wallpaper, it’s really so that the wallpaper is completely integrated as part of our workflow. And it’s not just: “Oh, I’m going to go here for this data point, here for this data point and I’m going to go to a third place for a third data point.” It’s being able to bring it all together and so it’s just one complete step, one complete story, and then being able to overlay intelligence on top of it.
Lux: It’s a lot easier for people to sink their teeth into this when you have examples, so I’d love to hear some examples of how you’ve used data to inform a decision or inform a strategy, or inform a certain direction.
Larry: Sure, so with one client we had, the US Open, we had been challenged to help them socialize the fact that they had a new forum, a new field, a new stadium with a new roof on top of it. However, when they started to do some of the social listening that we provided for them, they saw that conversation was down significantly on the previous year. And so, we were then able to split out all the social topics into things related to the stadium, things related to the talent, things related to the event itself and the experience. When we also looked at it on a four year basis, it happened to be in the same year as the summer Olympics, and so we were able to identify and understand that when the summer Olympics occur, there is less conversation around the US open because everyone gets their tennis fix two weeks earlier.
When we look at movies, we not just looking a the theatrical releases of our clients, but also what else is in the marketplace and what else is in the marketplace that’s geared towards the same genre, as well as the same type of audience. So you don’t want to compare a drama to a horror movie, but certainly, other horror movies are going to have some very similar experiences. What we do is we’ll use Unmetric to look at what other type of horror movies were being published in a similar time frame, in a year, two years, and look at what happens in the first trailer drop, in the second trailer drop because most theatrical releases have a very similar pattern and can we glean best practices from what others have done, and use that to optimize our own performance.
Lux: I’d love to know if you have any examples from conventional brands like CPG brands, or retail or QSR?
Larry: QSR specifically is highly competitive and while the content doesn’t necessarily have an expiration or a shelve life, but the fact is, everyday you don’t sell a hamburger or a chicken sandwich is another meal, another occasion that you missed out in selling that item. So it’s not a different shelf life, it’s rather, a different demand period that has the expiration date. So again, being able to get those optimizations, and being able to get those learnings fast, and in a way that’s aggregated, is really powerful.
Lux: What do you see in terms of big trends, what’s out there, what’s coming up in social, what’s going to change?
Larry: What I seeing that’s going to happen is that experiences are going to get richer and more personal. And so when we think about what is going to be next, it’s really going to be everything coming together. And so, having a connected home and internet of things, and it’s not going to be just social media any more, it’s just going to be media. I wish I could predict it, but I’m really excited to be a part of it and being able to ingest the data to help inform the strategies going forward.
Lux: I couldn’t agree more on that, I think both of us should be grateful for being a part of it, it’s certainly fascinating times. Larry, thanks a bunch, this is fun.
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