Keyword vs Location Based Social Data Monitoring

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To a man with a hammer, every problem looks like a nail. 

Keyword and location based social data monitoring are overlapping tools which serve distinct purposes. Social monitoring has evolved from technologies that process data by keyword, to technologies that process data by location first. However, location based social monitoring offers important benefits over keyword based tools.

Let’s start by defining both terms:

Keyword Social Data Monitoring

Keyword social monitoring platforms capture and organize social data by keyword or hashtag. They aim to to process social data from multiple channels like Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook by keyword or hashtag. This means that the technology can process posts containing specific keywords or queries from anywhere in the world.

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Location Based Social Data Monitoring

Location based social data monitoring platforms like WeLink capture social data produced at a specific location. The concept is to process social data from all social channels that have a location attribute embedded in the user posts.  This includes Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, Yelp, VK, Sina Weibo, and other social networks.

From one perspective, keyword approaches are like a chainsaw, and location based approaches are like a scalpel. Just like the scalpel offers precision over the chainsaw, location based social data monitoring offers these important benefits over keyword based data monitoring:

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Discover social data by location

 If your business has physical locations, social data monitoring by location is extremely important. Location based social data monitoring provides users with the ability to discover social data posts produced at your business location. Keyword monitors only capture social media chatter containing or related to specific keyword queries. The downside of keyword monitoring is the limitation of contextual relevancy: You will miss posts that your customers are sharing that do not include the keywords you are monitoring. Additionally, keyword monitors process the posts from everywhere in the world and are not filtered by your location.  As such, if you are a brand like Nike, you will not know where the posts are coming from when using a keyword social data monitor platform.

WeLink performed a study at a major hotel chain and found that less than 5% of the social data coming from the hotel location contained the keywords associated with the hotel. While using WeLink, a location based social data monitoring platform, we were able to capture the additional 95% of data—data that would have been missed by a keyword monitor.

Discover posts about your brand that do not mention your brand

Through our experience with retail companies, we see a wealth of valuable social chatter coming from end-customers within stores. Studies of Black Friday data show that over 40% of customers use their mobile devices to access social media while shopping. Social media users provide their opinion about a product, take a picture of it, and send it out on their social channel. These posts typically do not include the brand name of the product in the text. A location based social data monitoring tool will capture this data while a keyword monitor will not.

Discover trends by location and compare them to other locations

Location based social data monitoring technologies allow your company to capture data by location and compare the information across multiple store locations. Maybe you have an in-store hashtag campaign that works well in San Francisco, but not in New York. A keyword monitor can not help your organization track regional campaigns, because keyword monitors cannot separate the location of the posts like location based social data monitoring technologies can.

Using a location based social data monitoring technology, like WeLink, can provide a wealth of analytical data from the posts customers share from a specific location.  This includes data points around popular hashtags, popular keywords, influencers, languages spoken, popular pictures, sentiment, and unique vs returning visitors to name a few.

Create social engagement advertising campaigns by highly targeted locations

Leading location based social data monitors will allow you to engage with customers on their social channels. This includes following customers on their social channels and opening one-on-one communications.  This type of communication helps build your company’s social media presence and amplification.   Additionally, premier location based social data monitoring tools allow you to identify key influencers and provide you with the tools to send promoted ads to highly targeted audiences.

How WeLink processes social data and creates technology for the Enterprise.

WeLink has designed its technology to take advantage of multiple data processing capabilities.  Our technology has both the benefits of location based social monitoring and keyword monitoring as well as other social data process sources.  Processing social data in 4 ways: geo-tags, bio-tags, hashtags, and keywords (both locally and globally) provides our clients with the most advanced, enterprise grade,  location based social data monitoring, engagement, and marketing tool on the market.  WeLink processes data from TwitterInstagramFacebookFoursquareFlickr500pxYik YakVKSina WeiboYelpEventbriteMeetup,Daily Motion, and Panaromio. Our technology combines location based listening with keyword based monitoring to provide a hybrid solution that works for both scenarios. WeLink’s product also reflects advanced technologies ensuring the platform boasts in depth analytics, reporting, and people profiling features.  In addition, WeLink focusses on design making sure the product is easy to understand and use. WeLink works across many verticals such as retail, hospitality, law enforcement, event management, airlines, stadiums, and malls to name a few.

If you would like to learn more about location based social data monitoring technology feel free to contact me at

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Nathan Chandra