Monitor 360 Introduces Narrative Analytics

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Monitor 360 introduces a breakthrough method for revolutionizing strategic choices for businesses and organizations.

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For the first time, organizations can make strategic decisions based on real, data-driven knowledge about the deeply held and powerfully motivating beliefs that govern people’s behavior.

Monitor 360, a strategic consulting firm with offices in San Francisco and the Washington, DC area, today announced the introduction of Narrative Analytics, a revolutionary methodology that has the power to change the strategic landscape for businesses and organizations around the world.

Narrative Analytics uses both quantitative and qualitative analyses of large volumes of traditional and social media to give organizations never-before available insights into the hearts and minds of their audiences. For the first time, organizations can make strategic decisions based on real, data-driven knowledge about the deeply held and powerfully motivating beliefs that govern people’s behavior.

“The explosion in data has created a paradox for organizations,” explains CEO Doug Randall. “On the one hand, the volume, velocity, and variety of conversations about your organization, industry, and product have grown exponentially. On the other hand, you need to be able to filter what really matters from this fire hose of information. Monitor 360 helps you do that by leveraging narratives—collections of assumptions, beliefs, and attitudes that people use to make sense of the world.”

Narrative Analytics is rooted in Monitor 360’s work with the intelligence community over the last 10 years, in which they helped surface the narratives driving behavior in over 40 countries around the world. Randall and his partners at Monitor 360 became all too aware that most organizations operate in the relative dark, without a real understanding of the narratives that critically impact their business.

“So many organizations make strategic decisions based on intuition, on traditional market research, or on the advice of a few subject matter experts,” Randall says. “All of those methods ignore the current technological reality of Big Data—which actually has the answers, if you’ve got the tools and the expertise to understand what it’s telling you. Narrative Analytics makes sense of the data, and it gives you actionable insights into underlying beliefs at scale.” In particular, Randall and his team develop what they call a “narrative landscape,” a map of the existing stories that people are telling about an organization, its products, and the big issues connected to an industry.

Narratives are powerful, Randall explains, because they motivate people to act. “When groups of people hold the same set of narratives, they vote for the same candidates, buy the same products, even start revolutions together, which we saw in the Middle East with the Arab Spring,” Randall says. “So if you’re an organization, you want to understand what narratives your audience holds. Then you can decide which to align with, which to ignore, or which to reframe.”

Narrative Analytics is a systematic approach that uncovers narratives, analyzes them, and reveals how to wield them to an organization’s advantage. It’s a three-step process:

1)    Filter the narratives from the fire hose of information. Monitor 360 gathers data from tens of thousands of transitional media sources, and, with a powerful combination of algorithms and human synthesis, filters the dominant narratives.
2)    Sort, select, and leverage the narratives. Next, the narratives are measured for prominence and impact, and Monitor 360 develops strategies to wield the selected narratives for an organization’s advantage.
3)    Monitor the narrative landscape with ongoing metrics. With custom-crafted metrics, Monitor 360 tracks the narrative landscape over time and also monitors the impact from a client’s narrative-based strategy.

“If you’re trying to figure out how to make the best next move—whether that’s developing a new product, expanding into a new market, responding to a crisis, or trying to get an edge on your competitor—it helps to know what really matters to your audience,” Randall says. “To do that, you need to understand narratives and filter the signal from the noise. That’s exactly what Narrative Analytics does. And as a result, it gives you the strategic tools you need to maneuver.”

Monitor 360 clients already taking advantage of Narrative Analytics include the intelligence community, VMware, and

Monitor 360 brings clarity to complex, cross-disciplinary, global strategic and analytical challenges. With both quantitative and qualitative analyses, Monitor 360 helps organizations understand underlying beliefs at scale and leverage those insights to launch new products, enter new markets, manage brand and corporate reputations, and create breakthrough strategic plans. Through 10 years of advising the intelligence community, Monitor 360 developed Narrative Analytics, a revolutionary analytic method now being applied to leading companies and NGOs. Clients include The White House, major foundations, and Fortune 500 corporations.

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Kevin Rockmael
Monitor 360
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