IBM's Watson has been put to work psychologically profiling Twitter users

IBM's Watson psychoanalyses Twitter users to target ads

Watson, IBM's cognitive computer, is being used by advertisers to identify consumers' personality traits from their tweets in order to help target ads.

A study by the team behind Watson's Personality Insights API, which analyses an individual's personality using text they have written, has shown that Twitter users with certain personality traits are 40 per cent more likely to redeem a coupon and some are twice as likely to click through on Twitter adverts.

Now Twitter marketing platform SocialBro has used this API to create a service that analyses the tweets of consumers to help companies target their advertising campaigns. Telecoms firm Telefonica and HR specialist Adecco have already signed up for the service.

"Insight-driven digital marketing is now a given and one of the amazing things about Twitter is the richness of data publicly available. Now personality-driven marketing is no longer a vision for the future and is a present reality," said Javier Buron, cofounder and CEO of SocialBro.

"Marketers can use personality data to further enrich their audience profiles and begin to build proactive marketing strategies. By leveraging SocialBro's Personality Insights Powered By IBM Watson, marketers are able to boost the relevancy and performance of Twitter Ads campaigns and direct marketing campaigns and, as a result, produce stronger results."

The IBM system technology uses a combination of theoretical knowledge about the psychology of language in combination with data analytics algorithms to map an individual's personality traits.

These characteristics are then described in terms of their needs, their values and the Big Five model, which rates them on five key characteristics - agreeableness, conscientiousness, extraversion, emotional range and openness.

This analysis allows marketers to understand their audience's individual preferences and allows them to target their Twitter campaigns based on broad psychological traits, as well as use their insight into the personality of their audience to make decisions about their broader marketing strategies.

David Rodríguez, product manager of Telefonica's blog Think Big said: "With SocialBro's Personality Insights, we've been able to gain a deeper understanding of the readers of our thought leadership blog 'Think Big'.

"What personality traits they share, what motivates them, which ones are more likely to share the content with others and much more. Using Personality Insights we were able to build a targeting strategy based on Twitter users who would be more receptive to our content which in turn improved our campaign results and maximised the money we spent on Twitter Ads."

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