As Mark blogged earlier today, the report is dead. Luckily for all those data-hungry people out there, startups have the answer (unsurprisingly).

One of the luxuries of being a startup is having the flexibility to evolve and respond quickly to a brand’s problem. By having a small team and flexible hours, startups are able to tackle a problem head on and create an enhanced, bespoke service for those who require it.  Alexandra Dinsdale from Unilever mentioned this issue in our interview with her last week, emphasising just how important this ability can be to large businesses.

This matter is also something Avin Wong from WhichSocial has experienced this week. During a recent meeting with one of his large clients, he created a solution to a pain-point they were experiencing  which is actually exceedingly common amongst online retailers. The problem is what to do with the large amounts of online data that is being collected from sources liked Google Analytics.  All the facts and figures are there, but brands are struggling to know what action to take. Another issue is when to consult this data;  if you are only checking it weekly, or even monthly, how can you possibly react fast enough to the results you are seeing? Monthly reports seem to hail back to an era we are rapidly zooming away from, as right now data needs to be relevant, recent, and responsive.

The alternative to way to accurately measure your ROI on social media is actually very simple. WhichSocial provide real time alerts with actionable insights. That sounds like a lot of buzzwords, so let’s break it down.

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1. The brand sets a benchmark for product sales, social media interaction, or influential activity from consumer so they can judge and control what is a large response for them.

2.Whenever these criteria are broken, WhichSocial alerts you. This allows you to respond immediately to the action your shoppers are taking, and respond in an appropriate manner (for example, move the product to the shop’s front page, promote the Facebook post, or contact the influencer).

3. This uniquely allows the brand to know instantly when something goes viral (by their definition), whether it is a new video they posted on twitter, or a product that has been repined.

This kind of compelling and active response is going to only increase in importance as shopping online and social media marketing continue to dominate.

Avin is speaking at The Big Data show tomorrow, so if you’re going, be sure to listen to him at 4pm.

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