Debate: Is digital consumer intelligence hype or helpful to consumer insights?

The social intelligence industry has matured from the days of “social media monitoring” or “social listening”. Social intelligence is different, it’s more than reporting, it’s the process of finding and creating insights about behavior, emotions, perceptions, and motivations. Different analytical methods have been developed, and there’s skilled experts who know how to analyze the data to get to the insight out.

There is no doubt that the market for social media insights has matured, during this process there is also recognition that social data alone cannot answer all research questions. Technology vendors are starting to pull in other voice-of-the-customer data sources, and integrate other tech-enabled research methods into their platforms.

These changes have brought about new terminology, but is this terminology right or needed? Is it a branding exercise? Is it more hype that the industry will not deliver on? How should we talk about social intelligence, and the emerging new approaches and technologies?

Our experts discussed this topic here, and we’re inviting you to contribute. Have your say by clicking on the comments box below.


Jillian Ney
Jillian Ney
Dr Jillian is the founder of The Social Intelligence Lab. She has worked in the social intelligence industry for over a decade as researcher, consultant, spokesperson and author. She's on a mission to bring the industry together and give social intelligence the place it deserves as a recognised and supported discipline. Ask her about digital behavioural science, purchasing decisions and why Scotland is the best place on earth. More content by

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