News: Introducing The Vizia 2 Platform Announcement

By Giles Palmer on March 1st 2017

Today I am pleased to announce the launch of the Vizia 2 platform.

Over the course of 16 months, we’ve been hard at work taking what many of you know as Vizia – a social media command center that was, and still is, the best in the market, with the most gorgeous design and richest library of visualizations –  and building on it, to create a whole new beast.

Vizia 2 is now the communications platform for a data-driven business world.

With a new open development framework, powerful new visualizations and intelligent new ways to tell the business stories that matter to you.

And with the longer term vision for Vizia, we’re building a new language.

Bold, and also true.

Language is a way of passing information from one person to another. But businesses have numbers and charts and organizational data, which doesn’t lend itself to easy description. So what happens? Someone puts the charts in a powerpoint and they email them around. Then they get read and forgotten – or not even read. That’s a language that’s not working very well.

We have reimagined Vizia to address this problem.

We’re excited because it’s big. Because it’s hard. Because if we can do it, we can in our own little way change the world for the better. We genuinely believe that. And because it’s big, we might fail.

That makes it even more exciting.

The story of Vizia

Back in early 2012, ‘inspired’ somewhat by Dell’s command center, powered by Radian6 and TweetDeck, and after conversations with one of our most important clients whom we cannot name (but you know who you are) and Adam Bambrough our excellent VP of customer success in the US who started the ball rolling, I picked it up with with Glenn, a talented product manager.

‘We’re good at design,’ I said. ‘We’re the best in our industry, Katja rocks,’ he agreed.

‘And this is the same data that we have.’

‘Yep.’ (He’s good with words, Glenn.)

‘I’d like us to build a command center product.’ I was probably less polite, but this is how I like to remember it. I asked Glenn to take a couple of weeks to mock up what a great product would look like.

In two weeks we had some really nice ideas to play with. We iterated on them and then Adam presented them to our client, who I’ll call TB. She liked them, and decided to sponsor the project.

We designed the visuals (props to @puppadarling for that), and we built it – Dan Neame took the lead dev role, Luis Capel lead dev on the visuals, and Glenn managed the project throughout.

We launched it calling it Vizia (again, props to Glenn on that). We even had a logo that spun around and looked the same under a 180 rotation – so nerdy, so cool.

Over the course of the next few years, we improved it, focusing on the front end visuals and the admin controls. Then, towards the end of 2015, when Vizia had around 60 customers and was generating around $100k in MRR, we had an existential moment.

We weren’t sure what we were doing with Vizia, but we knew we needed a vision. So we got to it.

Glenn left Brandwatch to follow his true love to Dublin (top of the mornin’, Glenn) and Mike took over, working closely with our VP Data, Amy Collins. They’re big thinkers. We like big thinkers.

So, we riffed and we rapped and landed on a new vision – a big, hairy one.

Not just social data – all data that companies have access to, and not just beautiful visuals – a narrative builder, and not just in a command center, but on every screen and mobile. And we launch it today. Below you can see just a short example of one of the new features, the beautiful Network Visualization. 

We have built the distribution mechanism. Add a browser extension to monitors around your company and you can use Vizia 2 to bring them to life.

We have built some of the first data plug-ins and integrated them into the scene builder. Inside Brandwatch, we now have our Salesforce data piped through in real-time, rotating between our different sales teams to each sales floor in the organization. Every month a roll up report hits the screens with a narrative from Rich Pasewark, our CRO – sharing his thoughts on how we’re doing.

We’ll do the same with Marketing, weaving Google Analytics, Marketo, and other marketing performance tracking data into the platform and CMO Will McInnes will curate our ongoing narratives.

And we have built the developer framework so with a little technical expertise, you can do this too. Yes, you can do this too – it’s not that hard. Unilever are already building their own apps and sharing data internally on Vizia 2.

We’re so happy that they see that Vizia 2 can massively help spread insights and stories around their company – thank you for your engagement, guys.

We have also changed the commercial model so it’s easier to get started. Speak to your Brandwatch representative to find out more. 

Where are we going?

More integrations, more visualizations, more distribution mechanisms (mobile!), more intelligence and a whole new permissions system for large implementations are all coming this year.

Beyond that, it’s a new language, so it’s going to evolve to meet the needs of its users, and we may bring back the rotating logo.

And finally, some thank yous.

This has been a big one for us, 16 months in total, so there are a lot of people to thank.

The team – Graham Scott, Dan Neame, Michael Brackpool, Luis Capel, Fabien O’Carroll, Chris Newton, Jon Miles, Rui Nunes, Mark Everitt, Fia Krona, Ollie Edwards, Benji Hall, Stefan Pearson, Jesse Speak, Evi Malisianou, Anil Sharma, Garann Means, Jan Karlo Dela Cruz, Christian Morris, Amy Collins, Mary Shaw and Holly Youdan, and of course Glenn, Adam and Katja for being the Vizia catalysts back at the beginning.

Kudos. We’re all very proud of you, and what you have done.

Our customers – our early supporters TB and BW in particular – thank you. And thank you to all our other Vizia users and supporters. There are now around 140.

A little shout out to Jellyfish who share our building here in the Brighton HQ. They have a Vizia screen positioned in their kitchen that we all see when we walk in the building – it’s a great feeling seeing you use it – thanks for that!

And thank you to all my other colleagues – I don’t say this publicly often but I’m so grateful for all the wonderful work you do and the way you make this company feel like a special place to spend time. Thank you.

By the way, we’re building the Vizia team, so if you like the sound of what we’re doing, we’d love to hear from you.

That’s it for now – see you for V3 at the end of the year.

The Vizia 2 Platform

Your data. Your stories. Your world.


Giles Palmer


Giles is the CEO and founder of Brandwatch. He is a regular speaker at leading conferences and also serves on the Industrial Advisory Board for Sussex University, as well as the Social Media Committee for the Chartered Institute of Public Relations.