What’s the Story? Detecting narratives in the public conversation (with AI clustering and summarization)

What’s the Story? Detecting narratives in the public conversation (with AI clustering and summarization)

14th November 2023

Narratives are everywhere, and marketers, researchers and comms professionals are constantly navigating through them. One could almost say that a key part of their job is that of narrative management: crafting, understanding, and sometimes opposing stories in the ever-accelerating media space.  

To make this job easier, we’ve introduced Narratives on Pulsar TRAC, building on the bottom-up clustering of topic segments Pulsar customers have been using for years now.

Narratives allows you to get a bird’s eye view of the main narratives in any conversation topic you’re analyzing, understand each at a glance with a handy AI summary, and sets you up to easily see its performance over time, understand how it’s playing out by channel, and detect the audience championing that narrative. 

So, what exactly is a narrative? 

We can define a narrative as a collective belief or story about a topic shared by a group of people (i.e. an audience). More specifically, in this case, when looking at a conversation, you’re tracking a narrative is a cluster of news and social media content that describes an event, theme, or story from the perspective of a particular audience. 

By understanding key narratives, you can identify the cultural undercurrents to guide your brand strategy and storytelling, improve proactive media efforts and influencer partnerships, foresee potential risks to your reputation, and plan effective crisis management responses. 

On Pulsar, Narratives leverages our existing conversation clustering capabilities to analyze your dataset and extract the top 5 dominant themes in your search, providing a succinct summary of the entire conversation. 

The goal? Relevance: Pulsar does the heavy lifting to make understanding the conversation as easy as possible, and creates opportunities for greater credibility, relevance, and engagement with your audience through the stories they’re engaging with.

Selecting a narrative will give you a clear view of the scale of the conversation within the narrative, how it moves across different platforms, and how it evolves over time, and sets you up for easily segmenting that audience, right in Pulsar, to understand the key communities in it.

Each narrative displays a succinct AI-generated summary to easily grasp the narrative’s focus, and as your narratives evolve, so does the summary. So, applying Pulsar's advanced filtering capabilities will continually surface an easy way of understanding the narrative.

Additionally, you can analyze the content to understand the conversation driving each narrative. Understand conversation dominance by identifying the most engaged content in the narrative, the content with the highest media reach, and the most impactful content, i.e. has the highest visibility, a proprietary metric unique to Pulsar. 

Each applied lens will paint a different picture of the content within each narrative and inform a point of view of how you can generate content to engage in that narrative effectively. 

With narratives on TRAC, we also surface an understanding of the audience of each narrative to give you a succinct breakdown of their demographic characteristics and interests. So you can turn narrative-specific audience insights into campaigns and engagements that resonate with their unique demographics and profile. 

Finally, we identify the people who are most influential in driving each narrative, defining influential people as people who not only produce a high volume of content but also have a greater than average visibility or exposure, and exert influence around a particular subject - in this case, around a particular narrative. 

By identifying the most influential people driving the narrative, you can identify the most effective people to maximize influencer partnerships and strategies for the greatest reach and engagement. 

Narratives with AI Summarization is now available in Pulsar TRAC, and these additions are our first steps in expanding our analysis methods using the latest in cutting-edge AI tech.

If you’re a Pulsar customer, contact your account team to learn more about how to make the most of these exciting new innovations  – if you’re considering Pulsar and want to learn more about how audience intelligence and narratives can help answer your business needs, simply fill out the form below.