Reputation management practitioners are increasingly keeping an eye on the internet and especially social media as consumer conversations, especially ones on what to – and not buy – shifts online.

Locally BrandsEye has emerged as an important tool in tracking an organisation’s online reputation. Many clients are agencies tracking conversations on client brands and marketing. BrandsEye serves as an early warning system that alerts agencies and brands when a conversation turns negative. It also serves as a tool managing shareholder reputations as per King III and ticks many of King III’s boxes at low cost.

MD Tim Shier says his software tracks brand mentions over across 35 billion open content websites including social media sites and blogs. The company has clients in 89 countries and Shier believes BrandsEye represents a great tale of SA developed technology reaching the world. Telco’s, banks and financial services, FMCG brands and auto manufacturers especially have embraced the product.

Shier joined Quirk as an intern in 2007. He soon worked his way up to become marketing manager at Quirk eMarketing and became MD at BrandsEye in January 2010.

BrandsEye was developed by Quirk eMarketing seven years ago, but has recently been spun off to Quirk Labs, within which it operates as a 100% independent company. Shier says the new structure moves the company away from Quirk agency and allows it to service clients from a broad range of ad agencies.

It completes the companies’ evolution from a business unit to a business proper and will see it physically relocate away from the current Quirk HQ.

The focus for the year ahead rests on expanding the BrandsEye footprint to various African and Middle Eastern markets outside SA, followed by entry into other emerging economies. Shier will be visiting agencies in a number of African markets to educate them in the tools and opportunities BrandsEye brings to market.

Shier says that while he used to think digital is a uniform layer wrapping the globe he has come to realise that digital conversations differ substantially from region to region.

Social media platforms like Twitter especially means the amount of data organisations need to track is exploding, but on the upside, says Shier, it also represents the real world, and real world conversations, in a digital space, making it trackable. Ultimately Shier hopes tools like
BrandsEye will be used to improve governance by highlighting where shortfalls are being experienced by people on ground level.

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Reprinted from the September issue of AdVantage magazine.


Published by Herman Manson is edited by Herman Manson. Follow us on Twitter -

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