HootSuite acquisition of UberVU is good news for Canada

Posted by on Jan 23, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Social media monitoring gold rush: why the HootSuite acquisition of UberVU is good news for Canadian digital entrepreneurs

By Bruce Cameron, President of Return On Insight, a public opinion and social media research firm with offices in Alberta and BC

HootSuite, a Canadian success story in the digital media world, recently acquired UberVU , a relatively small but powerful social media monitoring company established in Romania around the same time Vancouver digital agency Invoke Media spawned HootSuite. The HootSuite acquisition will broaden and deepen UberVU’s flexible suite of analytical tools and products. But it also illustrates that Canada is playing a major role in shaping the emerging new digital communications world. And the rush to hire more digitally savvy knowledge workers to fill the offices of a Canadian social media startup will continue.

There has always been a strong Canadian presence in the global market research industry, and now digital media is taking on a distinctly Canadian flavour (yes, with a “u”; take off Microsoft US spell check!). The intellectual capital we are developing in social and digital media, as new companies hire hundreds of well paid knowledge workers, could spawn a Canadian knowledge industry gold rush.

Just look at these three leading international companies who carved out new digital businesses from a base in Western Canada, all of which are still in hiring mode:
Critical Mass, founded in Calgary, is one of the world’s leading creators of websites and digital advertising. They just won the international account for the South African Tourist Board.
Vision Critical, founded by Andrew Reid, son of legendary pollster Angus Reid, pioneered the use of online panels in market research, building an international presence and a client base on five continents—all from Vancouver.
And of course HootSuite, founded in Vancouver by Ryan Holmes.

Monitoring social media trends and making sense of millions of conversations occurring online at any given point in time is a daunting task. Since 2012, Return on Insight (ROi) has used the UberVU platform to develop industry specific products to track what people are saying, pinpoint where in the world they are saying it, and quantify the tone and volume of millions of conversations with remarkable speed.

Integrating market research expertise and insightful social media tools provides decision makers the best of both worlds. On the one hand, market research quantifies what people think through the scientific selection of a sample and the careful crafting of a series of questions. Social media monitoring is more like overhearing millions of conversations on any chosen topic. It adds flavour and immediacy to the task of understanding shifts in opinion, harnessing the power to overhear (with clarity and accuracy if you use the right tools), every word of the online conversations occurring around us.

Maybe Wilfred Laurier got the sentiment right but the Century wrong: the 21st Century may be Canada’s Century, at least for digital pioneers like HootSuite’s Ryan Holmes.

Return On Insight, a public opinion and social media company, integrates market research tools and techniques with social media monitoring analytics to keep clients informed and empowered.  ROi has been working with the UberVU platform to assist public and private sector clients since 2012.

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