Social Media Monitoring and Innovation – Synthesio’s European Customer Advisory Council

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Social Media Monitoring and Innovation – Synthesio’s European Customer Advisory Council


On Thursday 29th November, over 20 senior decision makers from numerous brands and industries gathered in Centre Point Tower in central London, for Synthesio’s second European Customer Advisory Council. The theme was how Social Media Monitoring drives Innovation – a big concept, so it was only fitting that the event took place with breathtaking views across the city.

Michael Natusch

Dr Michael Natusch, Cumulus Analytics

The scene was set by Dr Michael Natusch of Cumulus Analytics, who talked about how innovation could be driven through collaboration. He described innovation in the context of a number of different organizational models, likening well-known organizations like Apple or Dell to each – and a thought provoking discussion ensued about what camp Apple falls into, gravitating around whether they are seen as first-to-market innovators or ‘fast followers’. Influential blogger and consultant Neville Hobson, who was in attendance, has written an excellent blog about this very issue.

Next up was Nissan’s General Manager for Social and Digital Media AMIE, David Parkinson. He described the organization’s journey with social media monitoring and their aspirations to be the most innovative automotive brand on the market; explaining that their key objective across all markets is Reputation.

Nissan continue to pursue innovation via Synthesio’s Social Reputation Score as a means to find the link between brand reputation, share of voice, and brand loyalty – in turn creating a benchmark score that can be shared at board level and connected with overall performance.

David Parkinson

David Parkinson, General Manager Social & Digital Media, Nissan AMIE


The day’s presentations were closed out by Synthesio’s Research Director Oliver Lewis, who showcased Synthesio’s ongoing efforts to bring together engagement, reach and sentiment into one single metric; and overviewed some exciting thought leadership projects we’re working on, namely audience profiling, brand DNA mapping and campaign measurement.

Like the inaugural Customer Advisory Council, the day inspired animated debate and discussion amongst senior people from many industries, and reinforced the important role that social media monitoring has in promoting innovation and positive business change.

Key points of discussion:
• Businesses innovate in different ways according to their organizational model – either through ‘push’ (innovating on their products and driving the market forward) or ‘pull’ (innovating through research and developing products based on consumer desires). Social media monitoring has applications for both.
• Transparency, a smaller business hierarchy, small interconnected teams and clarity of business functions are all keys to promoting innovation; breaking away from organizational silos.
• Innovation doesn’t always need to be groundbreaking or an ‘invention’ – it can simply be a way of connecting ideas and improving processes.
• Social listening is a powerful way to measure online brand reputation, but the solid link between reputation and hard metrics is still being developed.

Customer Advisory Council

Dr Michael Natusch of Cumulus Analytics, Olaf Genrich, Manager Social Media Strategy, Toyota Europe and an illustration of the brands that participated in the Customer Advisory Council

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