You may think of your opinionated tweets and posts as just so much talking. But brands are engaged in a war of tools to better find and use what you and millions of your fellow social media-ites are saying about them and their products.

Today, social analytics and display platform Wayin launches its newest weapon in this arms race — a social search engine that provides the company with more advanced features for finding and sorting.

Founded in 2010 by Sun Microsystems cofounder and former CEO Scott McNealy, Wayin allows brands to find, curate, analyze, and display social media content in websites, broadcasts, Jumbotrons, and in-store displays. It has even been used to embed real-time social posts into TV ads.

The idea of display is that viewers or shoppers will become more engaged when they see how enthusiastic others are about the product.

In the recent holiday season, for instance, the company said that an unidentified electronics retailer used its platform to find social comments about 70 products it wanted to promote — and then it showcased the best comments on its website and on screens in its stores. The clickthroughs were reportedly higher than normal. The comments in the stores, Wayin said, helped parents and grandparents decide what products kids were talking about.


VentureBeat is studying social media marketing.
Answer our survey now and we’ll share the results with you.


Brands also use Wayin to determine the factors driving a conversation, so they can do more to pump up positive posts and counter the negative ones.

Previously, the platform offered tracking, CEO Elaine Feeney told VentureBeat, where a term was typed in and the results displayed. “What’s different [here] is a true search engine,” she said.

The new tool enables brands to search the past 15 days across Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook by hashtag, keyword or phrase, verified users, and other parameters. Users can then filter the real-time results by location, gender, sentiment, period of time, or other factors.

A Conversation Map in Wayin's new social search engine

Above: A Conversation Map in Wayin’s new social search engine

Image Credit: Wayin

Searched topics are also shown in context, with information from Wikipedia and other third-party sources providing a quick explainer about who, for instance, Bradley Cooper is — in case you’re one of the four people on the planet who still doesn’t know.

There is no shortage of social listening and management platforms, including social listening/analytics platform Brandwatch and social monitoring/analytics platform Crimson Hexagon. But Feeney says Wayin’s platform is unique because it is the first to provide enterprise-grade and integrated social listening, publishing, search, analytics, and display in one platform.

Other social platforms mostly focus on listening and publishing, she said. She noted that Spredfast does have similar capabilities, but they are not integrated.

“You have to login into three separate tools,” Feeney said.

Integration with TV is also one of Wayin’s specialties. The Weather Channel “wanted more eyeballs for its morning show,” Feeney recalled. Using Wayin’s platform, the channel shows weather-related social media comments on air.

The on-air weatherperson can drill down into orange patches on the weather map that represent selected social comments about weather in a given location, just as she can choose the green patches on the same map to get more information about precipitation.

The selected comments from viewers in that locale are then displayed on a screen on the set, giving an on-air perspective of the weather from the point-of-view of a resident.