Social media has turned into a powerful business hub for companies across the world. By carefully analysing customer reactions, a business can significantly improve its performance. However, interpreting so much online data can prove to be a gruelling task. Socian, an upcoming startup that began its journey in mid-2016, simplifies this process with the click of a button.
In the context of Bangladesh, social media is essentially dominated by Facebook. With a new account being created every 10 seconds, businesses have lunged in numbers to take advantage of this massive opportunity. Companies are using social media to get closer to their customers, either by promoting their brand or directly selling their products to millions of users.
Amidst the sea of posts, comments, reviews and other priceless data that social media holds, it becomes extremely difficult for companies to determine what their customers are actually demanding, what problems they are facing and whether the reactions are positive, negative or just neutral. Coupled with the lack of skilled social media managers in the market, this ends up being a serious hurdle for a company's digital growth. Tanvir Sourov, Co-founder and CEO of Socian, wanted to eliminate this problem once and for all.
"What makes Socian unique is its ability to recognise and work with 81 different languages. This allows the startup to overcome the challenge of analysing “Banglish” (a combination of English and Bengali) reviews which are commonly used by the average Bangladeshi social media user."
Socian is an Artificial Intelligence (A.I) based social media analytics platform. By using Socian, businesses can gain insights from social media, online portals and blogs to easily understand the overall customer perception about their brand. It does not just extract page based data, it works with individual posts as well, making it a handy tool for marketers. Starting from $100 monthly packages, Socian allows companies to compare their social media performance with local and international competitors in a relatively cost effective way.
What makes Socian unique is its ability to recognise and work with 81 different languages. This allows the startup to overcome the challenge of analysing “Banglish” (a combination of English and Bengali) reviews which are commonly used by the average Bangladeshi social media user. Moreover, its existing expertise makes Socian scalable for international clients.
After graduating from GP Accelerator Program's second batch, Socian has received its fair share of success and positive feedback from numerous avenues. However, the lack of resources when it comes to using Artificial Intelligence for Bengali is proving to be a big challenge. The startup had to develop a scalable system from scratch and is constantly working to make the analysis more accurate. The relatively inexperienced Bangladeshi workforce in this sector is also not helping the cause. At the same time, getting the idea of Socian as a lead generating platform for businesses across to the consumers is the biggest test the team is facing today.
When asked about Socian's future plans, Tanvir Sourov said, “By the end of 2017, we want to become a multi-million dollar company with as many as 500 clients. Secondly, we want to make sure that our platform has data of all forms, so that queries and information regarding advertising, marketing, target customer, competitors, etc. can be handled without any complications”
Considering its unique set of services, Socian definitely stands out from the crowd. The startup not only makes life simpler for marketers, it helps Bangladeshi businesses thrive in the local as well as international arena, making way for new opportunities. With Socian's diverse team of 18 talented individuals, the future of Social Media Analytics in Bangladesh looks very promising.
The writer is a sophomore at the Institute of Business Administration, University of Dhaka