Facebook's shiny new analysis tool lets marketers dive into customer data

Facebook key

Facebook advertisers are about to get better insights into their customer base, after the social network partnered with a startup called DataSift.

It is providing Facebook with Topic Data, a data analysis tool designed to help marketers gain better insights while keeping users' information anonymous.

While not all partners of Facebook will get access to the tool, those that do will be able to access information on what customers and clients are saying about them, their brands and events on Facebook, then use that data to make better decisions in the future.

Nick Nyhan, CEO of public relation firm WPP's data analysis division, said: "When marketers have a deeper understanding of people and what they are interested in, they can create more relevant experiences for their audiences.

"By looking at topic data, we empower brands to make smarter marketing decisions.

"We've worked with DataSift for some time the way they cleverly collect and organise data continues to make it simple for WPP to ingest, connect and leverage it across the agency network."

As Facebook admitted in a blog post, third party tools offering a similar service do exist, but only with a significantly decreased sample size that renders the information far less useful.

Topic Data, however, works better in that it anonymises and aggregates data to give companies more in-depth insights into all activity.

"To help us develop and scale topic data, we're partnering with DataSift, a trusted leader in the data industry," Facebook wrote. "We want to make sure the information we provide is useful to marketers, so we're using DataSift's technology to power the platforms that turn the data into insights."

Topic Data will only be available to select Facebook partners in the US and UK to begin with, with a wider rollout to follow "at a later date".

Caroline Preece

Caroline has been writing about technology for more than a decade, switching between consumer smart home news and reviews and in-depth B2B industry coverage. In addition to her work for IT Pro and Cloud Pro, she has contributed to a number of titles including Expert Reviews, TechRadar, The Week and many more. She is currently the smart home editor across Future Publishing's homes titles.

You can get in touch with Caroline via email at caroline.preece@futurenet.com.