How to Impact the Zero Moment of Truth

“What’s the ROI of social? How do I know it it’s driving sales?”

If you’re a social media marketer, you are more than accustomed to this question. And maybe you’ve even spent countless hours trying to count up likes, comments, shares and retweets and equate mere diagnostic measurements to something that looks like true business impact.

But chasing the elusive ROI of social has become less elusive as technology and people have gotten smarter. One way we can track business impact, for example, is through tools like Omniture and Google Analytics — which can show traffic referrals to eCommerce sites— or Kenshoo, which quantifies social’s impact on actual purchase. Other ways we might track this are through social coupon redemptions, which might leave us wondering whether it was the coupon or the social media that led to the sale. We are still left wondering how we can get closer to that Zero Moment of Truth, the crucial moment in the decision journey when the customer either will or won’t open their wallets.

Purchase intent happens earlier and with more external input than ever before. To wit, Forrester reports that 70-90% of the consumer journey is complete before a consumer ever engages a vendor, and the average consumer engages with 11.4 pieces of content before ever making a purchase. This decision-making take various shapes: reading Yelp or consumer reviews, outsourcing a question to Facebook friends, conducting a Google search, tweeting for guidance, or asking co-workers to weigh in.

These means a few important things for brands:

1)     Brands need to understand the questions that are being asked about their business, category and specific products by consumers.

2)     Brands need to employ a strategy to impact purchase intent in the consumer journey.

Spredfast has developed a product called Spark that can help with the first part — listening and tracking conversations and content that matter to brands. We are always thinking about new and exciting ways to use Spark, so when our Product Manager Andrew Chen sent around a company email detailing how to use Spark to detect purchase intent, I couldn’t resist sharing.

The second part is using this intelligence to inform a go-forward strategy, whether it’s developing more targeted or thoughtful content, telling a better brand story, or arming credible experts with facts. When you are ready to develop a strategy to engage, let’s talk. 

For now, please enjoy Andrew’s email detailing how to use Spark to detect purchase intent:

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Andrew Chen 
Date: Thu, Jul 17, 2014 at 3:37 PM
Subject: Spark Pro Tip: Detecting Real-Time Purchase Intent
To: Spredfast


Want to know how to use Spark to detect purchase intent? 

Here's a quick tip I shared with a brand customer, but it really can work for any brand -- saving them time and effort on knowing what their audience wants and aspires to in real time.

Once you've narrowed it down, they can stay on top of what their audience AND their competitors' audiences are wanting to buy / wishing for.

Steps to recreate:

1.     Create a Follower Topic in Spark. I used @BrandX to see what their followers are talking about.

Great a Spredfast Spark follower topic


2.     Name your follower topic:

Name Spredfast Spark Topic Search


3.     Add the Account of the audience you want to analyze.


4.     Confirm and hit Create.

Create Spark Search Topic


5.     Now hit the pencil icon to edit the topic further

Edit Spredfast Spark Topic


6.     Add terms indicating purchase intent  to the "Terms In" field:

Add purchase intent terms to Spredfast Spark Search


7.     Now your follower topic will refresh, every section will be honed in on mentions of purchase-intent terms. 

See Audience Tweets Expressing Purchase Intent with Spredfast Spark


8.     Click on the "+" sign next to Tweets rich with purchase-intent content they can reply to or start a conversation around.  

Find Individual Audience Members Expressing Purchase Intent with Spredfast Spark

For Brand X followers, their audience is showing multiple tweets and RTs indicating a desire for bucket hats.

You can tweak the Terms In as well as expand the number of audiences in a given topic, but this is a great way to capture in the moment purchase intent for any brand audience. 




Mind blown? If you're interested in talking about how we can help you get closer to understanding the true business impact of your social programs, get in touch with me on twitter at @kellylferraro.

Kelly Ferraro's picture

Kelly Ferraro

Kelly Ferraro is a Strategy Director for Spredfast, where she leads social strategy for global customers. Kelly is a social media and running addict. She is an east coast transplant currently living in Austin, TX.