For long-term success and getting noticeable visibility as a leading player in a competitive market, it is crucial for companies to build an effective and brand presence. The notion or idea of a particular brand is what remains in public perception to be the identity or character of a company. Hence, the more the brand penetrates into the target audience, the better prospects the business goes on to have. Nowadays, it is not enough to simply have a good branding strategy and implementing it well. The advent of the internet, social media and smartphones has proven innumerable times that user perception and preferences can change in a flash. Therefore, there needs to be a continuous and vigilant brand monitoring to ensure that branding strategies remain on their set course and achieve the results they were originally planned for.
How web scraping fits into brand monitoring exercise?
For this reason precisely, many companies are currently providing brand monitoring services to help out businesses better manage, promote and evolve their brand into a concrete entity with respect and appeal in the market. In the context of brand monitoring, one of the principal activities that can make a large and lasting difference is web scraping.
Web scraping for brand monitoring has the potential to be a significant and fruitful activity in many ways. For brand monitoring and tracking companies, it helps gauge brand perception and favor, and gives companies the unique ability to monitor first-hand the kind of reception and buzz their brand generates at a particular point of time. With enough information and active online brand intelligence and monitoring, future changes in trends and perceptions can also be forecast quite accurately, putting companies in a strong position to make small but significant changes to their branding strategy to achieve continued success.
For brand monitoring companies, web data extraction for brand monitoring is a routinely pursued activity- thousands of websites are scraped for relevant data, which is then stored in a sorted and formatted manner for future use. This data reflects what customers say, think and feel about a particular brand on their own websites, blogs, product and service review websites, and social networks. This tangible and actionable data can make a big difference when it comes to
- sizing up brand potential,
- gauging brand penetration,
- increasing coverage,
- estimating the scope and reach of a brand, and
- formulating effective and innovative brand strategies
A good knowledge of these factors can take brands to the next level of growth in a fiercely competitive market.
The Basics of Web Scraping for Brand Monitoring
Web scraping for brand monitoring works in a simple, linear manner – brand monitoring companies watch your brand in social media and other web sources, fish out the relevant data parts and store them for analysis. This is achieved using web crawling tools which are preconfigured to collect and store only certain kinds of relevant data. The process can be largely automated, and by automatically monitoring and collecting data from thousands of different web sources, companies remain in a position to get a more intimate and holistic view of customers, their opinions, tastes and preferences.
By leveraging web scraping, all this relevant and important information can be extracted from the web, stored into databases and fed into analytical tools and business applications for further processing. Not only does this give you a detailed idea about your brand sentiment, it also makes things easier for brand marketers to formulate strategy, target new marketing campaigns and generate new leads and sales, leading to better revenue and continued success.
The Nuances of the Process
Before web scraping was in practice, gathering relevant information about a brand, its perception and its competition used to be a time taking and labor intensive task. Nowadays, brand monitoring companies employ the immense power of web scraping to extract relevant customer data which is clean, palpable and actionable, providing detailed insight about your brand and your competition. Furthermore, the activity of web scraping for brand monitoring lets you engage first hand with your customers in real time, communicate with prospective and even competitive customers, learn about their tastes and opinions and use the information you gather to make your brand more credible and successful.
One important reason why this method has been known to produce good results is the involvement of social media in people’s lives. Social networks provide customers with a place where they can voice their opinions without bias, and the immense pool of data thus generated can be used in a targeted way to improve and consolidate brand identity and perception. Brand monitoring companies monitor your social media, using scraping tools to great effect to generate data for social media analytics. This enables companies to have in place a tried and tested and real time method of reputation tracking which puts them in a position of power when it comes to tweaking old brand strategies, or formulating new ones.
Advantages and Impact
Online brand monitoring through the use of web scraping has a number of important advantages. It is an immensely cost-effective and efficient process as web scraping can be customized and automated to suit the needs of any particular company. Here are some important points –
To start off with better, more effective brand management, you need concrete brand insight. With web scraping, you get first-hand information about your brand perception, and have the chance to pick up on minute, detailed information about customer opinion. This leaves your company in a position to use this information to fine-tune branding and marketing operations, reach out to new customers and improve the overall standing of your brand.
For any business, the most important and significant entity is the customer base. By automatically fetching and storing important, relevant information about your customer base from social media, you stand to gain accurate and in-depth insight about your customers. Whether you crawl social media websites or collect tweets from Twitter, the data generated this way has the potential to bring about major enhancement to your business prospects. With better insight and a more holistic idea about your customers, you can start making your long-term strategies more refined and effective.
Having a clear and detailed understanding of your brand positioning and penetration vis-à-vis the competition in your chosen niche is a thing of great advantage. Owing to the public, intimate and real-time nature of social media, blogs and review websites, you get a transparent view of the market where you can scope out your competitors and cement your place in the competitive spectrum. You can also gather more information about competitive customers and find new, interesting ways to attract them to your brand by offering more value than your competition.
Share of Mind
One important advantage of web scraping for brand monitoring is that you become immediately aware when someone mentions your brand on social media. You can track and monitor the number of times your brand, products or services are mentioned on the internet, and compare them with similar data about your competitors. This way, you become aware of the share of mind that your brand holds in context with your competing companies.
Web scraping generates data in real-time. This provides you with the unique opportunity of getting to know immediately if a customer or potential customer has a query, advice or issue with your brand. With the immediate notification, you can step in and communicate with your customers in real-time, addressing their issues and answering their queries. This helps build up trust and reliability, and puts your brand in a stronger overall position.
One of the chief goals of any business is to generate customer satisfaction. Companies across all branches of industries can use brand information and insight collected from web scraping to address particular and broad customer issues, making for a more pleasant and rewarding user experience with your brand. This results in happier customers, and serves to bring in new customers and better revenue.
Web scraping for brand monitoring can be a potent tool when it comes to increasing sales and expanding market knowledge and share. With the information generated from scraping, you can put to action targeted marketing and promotional plans, come up with better products and services, and build your brand into an authority in your chosen domain. With more in-depth knowledge of the overall market and better brand equity, this puts you in a better position to gain market supremacy over your competitors. This is a great way to increase sales and profits.
The principal idea behind brand monitoring companies is not just monitoring and reporting from web scraping activities. Rather, it is to provide actionable business intelligence that can be a difference maker for any company. Brand monitoring helps businesses derive sense and meaning out of intricate, complex market situations and provide social analytics and social insights. With enough crucial data, you can not only have better strategies in place, but also be able to accurately predict future trends and changes and be better equipped to handle any eventuality in the foreseeable future. Overall, it is a cost-effective activity which provides results that have a lasting impact.
Image Credits: befirstmediagroup | forbes