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Published November 22nd 2016

Interview: Talking Challenges, Data Sources and KPIs with MediaCom

What's social data got to do with The Secret Life of Pets? We talk to MediaCom's Head of Content Strategy & Content Distribution, Tom Robinson to find out.

In 2015 Brandwatch expanded its fast growing business, opening its first location in the APAC region.

Building on presence in the UK, North America and Germany (and now followed by the opening of our Paris, France office), we created a team in Singapore to manage demand from existing multinational clients, and respond to the significant potential in the region.

A presence in Singapore has allowed Brandwatch to build relationships with marketers in APAC and provide them with the same quality of service that has driven the business’ global growth.


In our first interview with a customer in the APAC region, we were delighted to talk with Tom Robinson, Head of Content Strategy & Distribution at MediaCom Beyond Advertising (MBA).

MBA sits at the heart of MediaCom – ‘The Content + Connections Agency’. Similar to Brandwatch, MBA is global and growing fast – employing over 600 people in 42 countries. The department focuses on three key areas: content strategy, content creation, and content distribution.

Hi Tom, lovely to talk to you. Can you describe your role?


I oversee the Content Strategy & Content Distribution services of MediaCom Beyond Advertising (MBA) in Australia, with a team of specialists covering content strategy, social media, SEO, website analytics, outreach and paid content distribution. It is our role to determine the role of content for our clients and how it should be applied.

Can you describe the structure of your social team?

The team consists of a content director who oversees all social media services day to day and is supported by a team of social executives, community managers, creatives, copywriters and analysts.

What led you to choose Brandwatch as your preferred social listening platform?

We have used a number of monitoring platforms previously with mixed success. Some other platforms provide a granular level of data, but not necessarily in an organized way that allows the team to easily identify and act upon insights.

We’ve found Brandwatch easy to use whilst presententing valuable data in real-time.

When looking for a social listening platform, what challenges were you looking to overcome?

We wanted to partner with a platform that allowed the team to reduce time on collecting data and more time on analysis and action. Allocating more time on these two tasks provides our clients with better and smarter results.

What are the specific challenges your business faces using social analytics?

Social analytics and monitoring is no longer confined to the social team. It’s used right across the agency to provide our clients with answers and solutions to their business challenges in ways that wouldn’t have been possible five years ago.

With that in mind, we needed to give our teams access to the information that was important to them without necessarily having years of training and experience in using social listening or analytics tools.

What specific types of information were you looking to gather? What data sources were important to you?

As an agency, we utilize social data in a variety of ways, representing clients across multiple industries. From basic conversation analysis across social platforms to identifying trends that can inform media and content strategies, Brandwatch gives us access to data that informs the entire business.

What are some of the main KPIs you were looking to achieve?

Our main KPI was to reduce wastage in resource and time, providing easy access to insights that are clear and actionable. So far we have seen a 23% reduction in time spent carrying out analysis and data collection in a matter of weeks.


What does success look like to you, and how do you measure it?

The success of any campaign we run is based on business results or behavioural change. Brandwatch enables this success through insights which allow us to make smarter and informed decisions.
For Universal Pictures’ animated blockbuster The Secret Life of Pets, Brandwatch allowed us to identify conversation in real time, bring to life the characters of the film, and communicate directly with our fans outside of owned platforms.

We were also able to use social insights to inform placement of media and exclusive content into social feeds to increase advocacy.

In the weeks building up to the premiere, we saw awareness, sentiment and intent to watch increase significantly and as a result, helped launch the most successful original animated film of 2016 in Australia.

What features within Brandwatch do you find most useful?

One of the most prominent features we use within Brandwatch across our social team is the Alerts.

Understanding how conversation changes and having the ability to react in a timely manner for our clients allows us to give them the information that matters, when it matters. For us, this has proven to be immensely valuable.

A big thanks to Tom for speaking with us. 

This interview is one in a series with industry experts – check out the link and discover how the likes of the BBC, Walmart and Dollar Shave Club have used social data to change the way they do business.

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