TopicPulse local social media monitoring tool reaches v3

By James Cridland for
Posted 21 October 2015, 4.40pm edt

Being 'real and relevant', the part of radio programming that I believe puts proper radio apart from other audio media, is hard work. Particularly hard work is being relevant - talking about what your audience is talking about.

Too often, editorial priorities at radio stations appear driven by a capital city hundreds of miles away; and that never quite translates into the local opportunities that you might expect.

When I've trained radio companies to use social media, one of the first things I do is show them how to see what's trending in their area, and how to take part in those conversations. The tools are there, but they've historically been pretty clunky and old-fashioned.

A few years ago, when I saw a development version of TopicPulse - in a dumpy little building in Oxford - I was impressed. It's a service that (now) monitors Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, as well as local news sources to discover what's trending in your town, rather than in places hundreds of miles away - and it's clever enough to be able to do it on one screen, rather than flitting between a bunch of different services. They've just updated the software to v3, which means more new features; there's a press release below.

Two years ago, when speaking to the team at BBC Radio 5 Live, I was fascinated to hear that their agenda is still, mostly, driven by what it says in the newspapers. I was fascinated that a radio station that prides itself for being deliberately based outside of the London media village actually takes its cues from that same London collective; and, potentially worse, from 12-hour-old newspapers - a media type which is slowly dying, and certainly becoming less relevant to people.

Now, a disclosure - I am a strategic advisor to Futuri Media, who makes this software; but I'm still pretty impressed by it. Indeed, I've been telling people about TopicPulse since before I worked for the company. It's well worthwhile to take a look: if anything else, it'll give you ideas about where to source stories and things to talk about on-air for your audience. And, naturally, that's just as relevant for music stations as it is for talk.

Being real and relevant means using the tools available to us, and there are plenty of those available, from things like Spotify play counts to listings, Twitter heat maps and talking to your audience on Facebook. TopicPulse is another of those tools that's worth your consideration, at least, it seems to me.

Press release

Futuri Media Rolls Out New TopicPulse “Version 3” for TV, Radio Strategic customization, predictive viral detection, sharing among many new features

CLEVELAND, OHIO – TopicPulse scans Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, message boards, blogs, and news sources to provide real-time guidance on what’s trending in local social media. Broadcast newsrooms and content producers tracking social media discussions in real time can now customize their revolutionary TopicPulse dashboard to their own interests with the new TopicPulse Version 3, introduced today worldwide by Futuri Media.

In addition to all current capabilities, TopicPulse v3 also now enables media professionals to see:

  • Predicted Trends: TopicPulse’s new predictive Viral Detector reveals which social media topics are likely to have high viral social potential, based on real-time trending. It’s vital to be nimble, as the average social media topic lasts just four to six hours.
  • Advanced targeting: TopicPulse features precise demographic details on who is discussing a topic on social media, as well as a topic’s broader audience reach. TopicPulse is the only real-time social media tracking system that measures specific demographics.
  • Competitive intelligence: You’ll know which competitive media have already covered a story (or not), helping you navigate your strategy towards or away from certain topics.
  • Opportunity: New “Gap Topics”: These are stories that are registering high in social reach, but rank low in broadcast/digital media coverage. This discrepancy presents golden opportunities to tap into what consumers really care about, ahead of the competition.

TopicPulse v3 also now helps users in several customized ways:

  • Select your own TopicPulse inputs from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, blogs, message boards and news sources, including your own DMA/state/country, keywords, brand followers and your own bookmarked website sources.
  • Display your own “topics-at-a-glance” screen on your newsroom or studio monitor of the hottest topics, based on your preferences, along the most popular related hashtags/keywords, popular tweet and trending status.
  • Compare topics side-by-side in one easy-to-use screen to see which stories are the most relevant to your brand or audience, and save them for future use.
  • Create assignment lists to simplify organizing prep for your newscast or show content.
  • Share with their colleagues lists of stories they’re working on.
  • Collaborate by posting comments and notes on projects and assignments to colleagues in your workgroups.
  • Improve search and social rankings, by showing which are the most important and fastest-growing hashtags and keywords to use in social posts. These capabilities, regarded as key relevance statistics, enable users to elevate their content’s search and social rankings.

Futuri President/CEO Daniel Anstandig commented, “We built TopicPulse to be a comprehensive ‘buy, sell, hold’ system for local content producers. Using sophisticated monitoring and algorithms, it provides real-time guidance for local broadcasters on which content matters most to their audience. Research continues to show that heavy social media users are research-friendly consumers—which means that knowing what is trending in your market on social can help to drive intelligent content decisions and maximize ratings.”

James Cridland — James runs, and is a radio futurologist: a consultant, writer and public speaker who concentrates on the effect that new platforms and technology are having on the radio business. He also publishes a free daily newsletter about podcasting, Podnews, and a weekly radio trends newsletter.

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