Competitive markets and presence of alternatives have given power in the hands of consumer. The consumer not only chooses which products and services he/she wants, but can also influence many others who are trying to make the same decision. With the penetration of the internet, connect between the consumers have breached all boundaries. People have started researching on internet about a product or a service before making buying decision and this trend is here to stay. With all kind of information available on their fingertips, it becomes very important to know and manage what is being talked about regarding your product and service.
Traditional feedback channels like support/ticketing system provides only limited information on consumer thinking. Along with this, there are social media platforms both independent and owned by respective companies which provide users an opportunity to express their opinions and complaints. The comments/reviews, which are usually in the form of free text contain a wealth of information. The ideal way to analyze this data is to read them manually and take appropriate action, which is of course very tedious. The way out is to perform text analytics to analyze, aggregate and visualize data to answer important questions for business.
While the platforms like social media, review sites, forums and blogs provide useful feedback about products/services, getting data automatically from these sources is not an easy task. Some sites already have API’s developed which allow one to connect to their data, but it is not true for every site. A site may require one to build a custom program to get the data and may require modifications in case the site structure changes.
Once the data is in their ecosystem, one can analyze it to mine features like sentiment, intention, event, cause, category etc. The above features when aggregated will bring the real voice of customer which when used in the right way, can bring tremendous rewards to the business.