What they’re saying about autonomous technology

Published in Autonomous News
Web Link: http://www.autonews.com/article/20160911/OEM06/309129989/what-theyre-saying-aboutautonomous-technology

In the aftermath of the crash, consumers remain optimistic that autonomous drive is the “next big thing in the auto space,” a study shows.

MavenMagnet, a social data research company with offices in New York and Mumbai, India, conducted this study.

The study analyzed 3,081 conversations from Jan. 1 to Aug. 15. The conversations were evenly distributed before and after news of the fatal crash of a Tesla using Autopilot became public on July 30.

MavenMagnet analyzes data from all digital sources — including social networks, communities, forums, chat rooms and product reviews — to provide insights about U.S. attitudes toward emerging and rapidly evolving topics such as autonomous vehicles. Its work for corporate clients has included analysis of more than 40 vehicle nameplates.

Perhaps predictably, online conversations about autonomous vehicles turned markedly negative this summer after a fatal crash involving the driver of a Tesla Model S operated in Autopilot mode.

What’s less predictable — and more encouraging to developers of self-driving vehicles — is that consumers remain optimistic that autonomous drive is the “next big thing in the auto space,” according to a new study done for Automotive News.

MavenMagnet, a social data research company that combs through online discussions, noted the changing attitudes by comparing comments before and after the Tesla accident became news on July 30.

The study sifted through thousands of conversations. It analyzed U.S. consumers, trying to sort out their attitudes toward a disruptive technology with positive and negative possibilities.

“It was not a surprise that safety was a big concern and became a bigger concern,” said Aditya Ghuwalewala, MavenMagnet founder. “What was more surprising was that even after the accident, there was optimism that this was the next big thing.”

Ghuwalewala added that people posting opinions online split over the responsibilities of human drivers and autonomous technology.

“It’s a very engaging topic, from the look of the conversations,” he said.

Another division was between consumers who want to keep driving themselves — except in traffic jams – – and those who apparently can’t wait until they can nap, text or watch a movie while being transported autonomously.

Cleve Langton, MavenMagnet president, said that reflects “the tedium of driving vs. the pleasure of driving: “Oh my God, I face this commute every morning, and if I could just zone out, that would be great.’ And then there’s the visceral satisfaction of driving.”

Context

Context: the virtual box around a quote or conversation. This is the interpreter box that helps you make sense of the conversation. This is the savior box that helps politicians defend pretty much any statement by saying that it was quoted out of context.

So let’s put things into context. We give a whole lot of importance to context when making sense of big social data. The idea is to differentiate between virgin the airline, virgin the mobile and “virgin”–anything that is pure. When you want to extract insights from the perception of your consumers, you got to get rid of conversations that have nothing to do with your brand/product. We at MavenMagnet call it chaos elimination using social mapping technology. The intent is to leave nothing that is in context and keep nothing that is not in that particular context. This helps us analyze a whole lot of relevant and contextual data with high degree of accuracy and provide actionable recommendations swiftly and comprehensively.

Scale

Scale: the thing we use for measurement. We are surrounded by scales. We measure everything from the distance to a destination to how much something (or someone) weighs to how long it’s going to take. Every measurement has a standard scale associated with it. For example, we measure distance in miles, weight in pounds and time in hours. It is second nature to us. It makes life easier and more meaningful. The same applies to everything else that is measurable including in the world of marketing. That’s where Key Performance Indicators, or KPIs, come in play.

In marketing world KPI is a standard scale to measure the success of things like marketing campaigns, a website’s performance and a brand’s position in a competitive landscape. The million dollar word here is STANDARD. If you are developing the best algorithms in the world to come up with the best KPIs, the most important thing to do is to make sure the KPIs you define are acceptable as the standard.

So let’s get to the important part. What are the ingredients to make KPIs standard? It’s a sequence of things. First and foremost is accuracy. You need enough benchmark and trends to show accuracy of your KPIs. When you have historical data to prove accuracy, you are in the market with something that you can be justified with evidence. You can make a case that there is a need for these KPIs because that’s the best measure of success. You have the confidence to let the early adopters–the progressive clients–kick tires and  try it out. When accurate results emerge, the most important ingredient in the standards business comes in picture. Trust. Trust around KPIs leads to adoption, first by the early adopters and then by everyone else. And there you have it–a new measurement standard making the lives of people in the industry so much easier and quantifiable.

ET Magazine – MavenMagnet research study: Second year of Modi Sarkar

MavenMagnet conducted a study in partnership with The Economic Times to evaluate the public performance of Indian government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The study was published on May 14, 2016. Here’s the link to the study.

ModiSarkar_Year2

Going global

There are lot of things that helps the business grow. One of those things, specially for a B2B business, is global expansion. Global expansion has become a necessity in lot of ways for service companies. All Fortune 100 companies are multinationals with operations across the globe. A cereal company sells cereal in US also sells cereal in Europe also sells cereal in India and China. So if they are looking for information like how they are doing competitively in the market or how their campaigns are doing, they will need measurement tools in every market. Therefore developing global capabilities is a slam dunk and in lot of ways a no-brainer.

Then why are many service companies regional? There are many benefits of being regional. You can develop niche expertise in a market and run the tables there. It’s easier to manage and contain, and if you are in a big market, there is way too much ground to cover in there than thinking of expanding wings across borders. But sometimes its prudent to have capabilities in multiple geographies to serve your consumers.

So you plan to go global. Let’s look into challenges that comes in your way. One of the key ones is resource management. The most fundamental resource is people. Getting the right people to work in the right market is the most essential thing. You should go to the markets that will provide you the best bang for the buck, but a key decision making factor, given most other things being equal, is also where you have the most dependable people to service the market.

We would all love to have presence in all 200 countries where Pepsi sells cola, but it is just not practical and in many ways not essential. Take a step at a time so that your operational capabilities are able to support your expansion. Operational capabilities expanding with your expansion is critical. Everything from language support to time zone support need to keep up the pace. There is no time of the day when you can allow downtime if sun is up in some part of the world where you are operating.

Go global if you it makes business sense. Go global at the right time in your growth curve. Go global if you have the muscle to sustain it.

The irrationality

We live in an irrational world. Everything from the stock market and consumer buying habits to people’s beliefs and their voting choice is irrational. As a marketer you have to navigate through this irrationality and fit your product in the mix. In other words, you have to accept the irrationality and make sense of it. And that’s where we come in picture.

At an individual level its complete chaos. Even looking at a few dozen maintains the chaos. The chaos normalizes when you take tens of thousands of consumers and their hundreds of thousands of conversations. What emerges out of this exercise is something really beautiful. You get strong patterns that define your consumers, what matters to them and influences them to make decisions in their lives.

The basic idea is to understand your consumers. Develop products that they want. Speak to them in the language they speak. That’s how you will decode the irrationality and become a part of their world.

Expectations from Indian Union Budget 2016

MavenMagnet conducted a study in partnership with The Economic Times published on February 27, 2016. Here’s the link to the study.

Budget2016Expectations