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Relative Insight Evolves Crime-Fighting Technology to Turn Language into Data

Relative Insight (, the language analysis service that turns language into data, launches today. The company helps brands and agencies analyse all language associated with an organisation and determines how it resonates with key audiences.

The technology is based on 10 years of research at Lancaster University. It was initially developed for law enforcement to identify masquerading by criminals by analysing at scale the language used in conversations. The company now works with major brands including Microsoft, Havas, Ogilvy and Manning Gottlieb OMD to provide insight into the language found in advertising copy, website copy, social media, forums and any other channels where language is used in relation to a brand.

Relative Insight plans to disrupt the subjectivity around traditional marketing approaches by providing sophisticated evidence-based analysis of the language used by competitors and consumers alike.

“There are now so many channels via which a brand can talk about itself, and via which its consumers and users can respond. To truly understand what you are saying about yourself and what’s being said about you, simple analysis of social media channels simply isn’t enough,” said Ben Hookway, CEO of Relative Insight. “For example, a word like ‘break’ alone has 76 different meanings in English—sentiment analysis tools really struggle to know which meaning is intended. The launch of Relative Insight will enable organisations to have a level of insight into the language used by themselves, their customers and their competitors on a scale that has never been available before.”

Unlike social media monitoring tools, Relative Insight is a managed service. The hand-delivered data shows brands how their target audiences are responding to their marketing campaigns and makes recommendations for language improvements, allowing them to adjust their language across all channels with a goal to build stronger emotional connections between the brand and its consumers and ultimately positively impacting sales.

“Relative Insight allows us to compare our use of language with how our target audience speaks and how our competitors position themselves. We can reflect that knowledge in our ongoing communication in digital and beyond,” said Thomas Messett, European head of digital marketing at Microsoft Mobile.

“Taking the subtleties of language expression and turning it into data has been a major development for Havas,” said Matt Fanshawe, Global Brand Director of HavasEHS. “Investigating language data on a grand scale to show how a brand is perceived in relation to its competitors, and monitoring the changes over time, has enabled us to bring real insight to our clients. Using this to understand the differences between customer groups, the semantic topics they discuss, their expressions and views has opened up a source of consumer insight that we believe is unique and drives our creativity.”

“Relative Insight helps us to engage in critical analysis of our clients’ otherwise unwieldy volume of online conversations,” said Leo Ryan, group head of social at Ogilvy. “As an agency that is focussed on helping our clients to sell it is crucial that we have a real understanding of the nature and perception of their customers online conversations about their brands, products and services. Relative Insight enables us to do that at scale and with real rigour.”

About Relative Insight:

Relative Insight objectively and comparatively analyses the language associated with brands, their competitors and consumers, delivering insights into how language is resonating with and perceived by audiences. Relative Insight is technology delivered as a managed service, run by a team of experts who have built the technology from 10 years of research at Lancaster University, initially developed to identify criminals in the fields of child protection and counter-terrorism. Relative Insight raised an investment round in 2014 with EV Group. For more information visit, follow @relativeinsight, or monitor the #languageisdata hashtag.

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