Did Apple get it right with the new MacBook?

Posted on October 28, 2008. Filed under: Customer Insight Portal, Leximancer | Tags: , , , , , |

When Apple launched their new line of MacBook a few weeks ago, many people were excited to see some positive changes from the outdated version still in stores. Although Apple got many rave reviews on the MacBook, not every user loved everything about the newest version.

A concept map of CNET Reviews of the Macbook

A concept map of CNET Reviews of the MacBook

Using reviews of the new MacBook from CNET, Leximancer’s The Customer Insight Portal was able to identify some of the aspects that consumers were dissatisfied with that Apple could use when they develop their newest version down the road.

A thematic summary of connected themes in the concept map

A thematic summary of connected themes in the concept map

As one can see when looking at the thematic summary The Customer Insight Portal generated, the theme “bad” is the most connected at 100%. This could mean two things. This may mean that the majority of reviewers identified the product or aspects of the product as “bad”. This also may be because many users use CNET reviews as a chance to express their concerns with the new MacBook.

Another interesting thing to note is that the theme “screen” is the most prevalent theme (48%) in terms of what is truly specific to the MacBook itself. Apple opted to use a glossy screen for the new MacBook, which garnered mixed reviews.

Concept map of the theme "screen"

Concept map of the theme "screen"

When zoning in on the screen theme, you can see that glossy and matte are prevalent concepts, as many reviewers prefer the new, glossy screens of the MacBook, while others think that having a matte screen is better. Digging into some of the textual evidence, you can see that there really are mixed feelings about the look of the screen.

“For me personally I was prepared to make the switch from PC to Mac but the 
glossy screen was a deal breaker for me.”

“I am a programmer so having a glaring screen is the real deal breaker for 
me, but the other then this the thing I really disliked about these 
computers which I have not heard anyone else mention so far is the 
sharpness across the front edge.”

“The glossy screen is supposed to make everything seen on the screen, well, 
glitter. I’ve compared a website seen on a matte screen, and on a glossy 
screen, and I must concur that, the same website on the glossy screen looks 
better in terms of aesthetics.”

“The glossy screen doesn’t bother me that much. That I could live with, and 
the flat glass surface on the screen is one of the best ideas in mobile 
computing that I have seen in years.”

“Glossy screen better than matte. (But they should’ve used Opticlear coating 
from NEC)”

have no idea why everyone suddenly went to these glossy screens. I have no 
idea what they are talking about when they say it has better colors.”

“The glossy display doesn’t bother me as 
it’s the same as my iMac’s and I absolutely love it (and don’t take my 
laptops outside all that much).”

Concept map of the themes "pad" and "worst"

Concept map of the themes "pad" and "worst"

One of the most obvious concerns for the new MacBook users was the mousepad/trackpad. While the spacious pad, made of glass may be roomier and allow for some revolutionary “gestures” similar to the iPhone, the trackpad is now buttonless, which many reviewers have found to be confusing and annoying.

As you can see, the theme pad was most closely related with the worst theme, and included concepts like horrible, sucks and disliked. This shows that for many reviewers, the trackpad was a strong source of discontent.

Close up of theme "bad"

Close up of theme "bad"

Another interesting complaint that reviewers had, as you can see around the concept bad, was the loss the of a FireWire port. Because many digital cameras and camcorders use a FireWire to load onto a computer and some users need it for editing purposes, reviewers were upset that the new MacBook’s did not have this capability. Although the MacBook Pro and some other higher end options do have the FireWire port, the less expensive MacBook does not.

“Removing the firewire from the low end macbook seems like a really bad move 
when you’re looking at it now. I happen to use firewire for video editing, 
but I’m not sure it’s important to most people.”

“(maybe Macs too, just 
haven’t done any research) Sure, sure, those of us in the know are aware 
that firewire is much better for HDDs and such, but the average consumer 
doesn’t know that. Most PC users use USB external drives.”

Overall, the new Apple MacBook’s got many positive reviews from sources. However, using Leximancer’s The Customer Insight Portal, we are able to hone in on some of the aspects that reviewers aren’t as pleased with. When it is time to develop the newest version of the MacBook, Apple will be able to learn from this discontent and build a new model accordingly.

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Leximancer Adds Strategic Partner in OrbisIP Limited

Posted on October 24, 2008. Filed under: Leximancer, News | Tags: , , , , , |

Leximancer Adds Strategic Partner in OrbisIP Limited

Innovative customer insight software made available to government and military customers

BOULDER, Colo. – (Oct. 21, 2008)- Leximancer, a Customer Experience Management (CEM) and analytics software development company, today announced a partnership with OrbisIP Limited, a technology transfer and licensing company that focuses on Information and Homeland Security Intellectual Property (IP) Patents and Products, expanding Leximancer’s growing customer base to include government and military sectors. The partnership comes as Leximancer recently launched its SaaS-based The Customer Insight Portal that analyzes customer feedback and unlocks critical insight.

“This strategic partnership is an exciting opportunity to leverage the impact of Leximancer software,” said Neil Hartley, Leximancer CEO. “In a time of heightened concerns about security, it is imperative that government and military personnel be able to fully analyze the data they have and find new and actionable insight-a service that is unique to our product.”

Leximancer’s software enables users to find meaning in a variety of places, including textual information on the Web, in blog posts and social media sites, or nearly any textually-based document. The software pulls out from unstructured text the main themes, ideas and relationships between words and turns this into meaningful insight for the user.

The partnership with OrbisIP will help Leximancer expand its customer base into the international security market, including government and military users. OrbisIP is a recognized leader in the information and homeland security fields and will provide Leximancer with the necessary tools to expand into this field.

“We have seen firsthand that this technology can help organizations to make sense of a wide and complex array of data sets and produce analysis quickly and accurately,” said Pete Jaco, OrbisIP CEO. “A big part of our jobs at OrbisIP is to identify and help distribute emerging technology that can help meet security targets and objectives within a nation’s security industries.”

About Leximancer
Leximancer’s patent-pending software platform is available through OEM partners or through www.thecustomerinsightportal.com. It allows customer satisfaction, brand management and competitive intelligence professionals to automatically extract the root causes of customer attitudes from Internet communications such as blogs, Web sites and social media, as well as the vast amount of data currently locked within the enterprise in the form of e-mails, service notes, call center notes, voice transcripts and survey feedback. Through its intuitive concept discovery, cause-and-effect analysis, thesaurus and search functions, Leximancer is the only solution that delivers deep insight into customer attitudes by objectively identifying “unknown unknowns.” For more information, visit the Web site, www.leximancer.com, or the blog, http://www.customerinsightblog.com.

About OrbisIP
OrbisIP is the first company to focus exclusively on the technology transfer and licensing of Information and Homeland Security Intellectual Property (IP) Patents and Products. OrbisIP is building international partnerships with universities, research laboratories and small to medium enterprises (SMEs) that specialize in producing innovative security technology and research, and assisting these partners in the licensing and distribution of their technology to global licensors of Infosec Patents and Products. OrbisIP Limited has been founded with the support of strategic investment party Imprimatur Capital.

# # #

Elaine Ellis
Metzger Associates
eellis at metzger.com

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Leximancer CEO Neil Hartley Interviewed by B-eye Network

Posted on October 13, 2008. Filed under: Leximancer, News | Tags: , , , , , , |

Leximancer recently was featured on the industry renowned B-eye Network. Mary Jo Nott, executive editor of the B-eye Network interviewed Leximancer CEO Neil Hartley about Leximancer’s growth and technology.

The pair talked about short- and long-term business strategy, current and future trends in the market place and the importance of being able to extract actionable customer insight from social media – including specifics of what Leximancer is doing to address this customer need.

Bottom line is that many text analytics options are both cost-prohibitive and time-prohibitive. According to Hartley:

“First, it needs to be usable by a business person who can pick it up and get to usable set of results extremely quickly. Second, it needs to be able to process masses of data regardless of the language or the source where the data is coming from and without the need for any setup. And it needs to go the extra mile in getting to the root cause of problems – particularly in that customer insight space, just listening or knowing what customer attitudes are is not enough. You need to get to the why your customers are happy or why they are unhappy, so you can make the insight actionable. After all, the link between cause and effect is not always a straight-forward, one-to-one connection.”

To learn more, please join us for a live Web demo. In the meantime, send us your data and we will help you uncover valuable customer insight specific to your business.

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Instant Competitive Analysis on Blog and Forum Data: Motorola Razr versus iPhone

Posted on August 29, 2008. Filed under: Customer Insight Portal, Leximancer | Tags: , , , , |

We live in a new world. Today’s social and business cultures have merged on the Internet. Never before have executives had so much data about customers and their thoughts, feelings and attitudes at their fingertips. But like most good things, it comes with a catch: There is too much unorganized data to be easily useful, but turning this into Customer Insight that you can act on is the difference between market leader and recording record losses.

We used The Customer Insight Portal to turn some of this mass of data into real insight and business intelligence by looking at customer sentiment of the Motorola Razr and the Apple iPhone. All the data used is from fully public blogs and forums that do not require a login. 

Initial Concept Map from The Customer Insight Portal

Initial Concept Map from The Customer Insight Portal


What we discovered is that customers all are looking to upgrade to a new and improved product. There are several features shaping customer purchase decisions including overall design and style. It’s important to customers that their phone has a good screen and camera, supports video, plays music and supports Web browsing. While customers like the cool look of the Razr, they feel the iPhone is the best available device for playing music.

The iPhone has competing opinions about the new product. Some describe the iPhone as cutting edge technology and say that it delivers value for money. Others complain of delays, and cite problems with software, pricing and a battery that only lasts a day. While there are conflicting views on carrier service, there is consensus that free calls and other offers are effective in attracting new business. That fact that only the Razr is available on Verizon and Sprint is a significant decision point.

How much do you think that kind of insight is worth to your company?




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In the News: The Customer Insight Portal

Posted on August 14, 2008. Filed under: Customer Insight Portal, News | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Today marked the formal launch of The Customer Insight Portal, and the news was picked up around the Web.

Forbes.com, Marketwatch.com, Morningstar.com, Reuters, Yahoo! Finance and others picked up the story of how The Customer Insight Portal is the “game changer” for companies looking to gain insight into their customers

The full press release:

“Game Changer” Customer Insight Portal Launched
Powerful Leximancer software available as Software as a Service (SaaS)

BOULDER, Colo., Aug 14, 2008 – Leximancer, a Customer Experience Management (CEM) and analytics software development company, today announced the launch of The Customer Insight Portal, a Web-based Software as a Service (SaaS) that delivers insight to not only what customers are saying, but why they’re saying it.

“The Customer Insight Portal is a game changer for the way companies seek to understand their customer attitudes and behaviors,” said Neil Hartley, Leximancer CEO. “It allows virtually any organization or individual user to easily gain insight into the root causes of customer opinion and feedback. Our state-of-the-art market intelligence software has been proven on the desktop world-wide and now we are making it available through The Customer Insight Portal.”

For consumer-focused organizations, The Customer Insight Portal gives marketing professionals, brand managers, competitive intelligence and customer experience managers the ability to make critical decisions based on factual data regarding customers’ thoughts and feelings toward their brand, products or service. The Customer Insight Portal goes multiple steps beyond traditional text analytics by employing a rich variety of scientific methods to analyze call center notes, survey data, e-mails, documents, blogs, social media and Web sites. This enables Leximancer to uniquely provide insight into the root causes of customers’ attitudes and actions, allowing companies to determine not just what people think of them, but also why.

“The Customer Insight Portal lets business people explore and automatically find meaning, and identifies structured relationships between the key ideas or issues that are important to customers – uncovering information that was previously hidden,” said Chris Westfall, Leximancer vice president of business development. “From the people that have already used the portal, they’re saying that it provides previously unknown, actionable insights, which is great validation of what’s possible.”

The Customer Insight Portal provides deep insight without the need for set up, which means that analysis is provided without previous knowledge of the information under investigation. Users of the Customer Insight Portal can upload the data and the analysis is complete in the time it takes to make a pot of coffee. Because there is no selection of terms before getting started the results are unbiased. Companies find out what is there, not just what they think should or might be there.

About Leximancer
Leximancer’s patent pending software platform allows customer satisfaction, brand management and competitive intelligence professionals to automatically extract the root causes of customer attitudes from Internet communications such as blogs, Web sites and social media, as well as the vast amount of data currently locked within the enterprise in the form of e-mails, service notes, call center notes, voice transcripts and survey feedback. Through its intuitive keyword discovery, cause-and-effect analysis, thesaurus and search functions, Leximancer is the only solution that delivers deep insight into customer attitudes by objectively identifying “unknown unknowns.” For more information, visit http://www.leximancer.com or http://www.thecustomerinsightportal.com.

# # #

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What to do with that data?

Posted on August 4, 2008. Filed under: Customer Insight Portal, Leximancer | Tags: , , , , , |

Corporations have spent millions, if not billions, on new ways to collect input and feedback from customers. Recordings of customer service calls, having call center operators take notes, e-mail campaigns, online feedback forms and countless other methods.

What we’ve seen in many cases is that executives look at the data, find a few similar points customers make and come to conclusions. Those conclusions usually dictate action and budget allocation. Churning through piles of data and reports is difficult and time-consuming, so gut feeling is supported by only modest quantitative information in most cases.  Of course this is a gross over-generalization, but in fact is true in many many cases.

For example, a company that does call center performance optimization collects an unbelievable amount of rich data. They have call center transcripts, agent notes, self-service feedback from customers … just loads of the stuff. Their problem – because a modest amount of quantitative data is available, all this qualitative stuff is dropped on the floor.

From what we have seen, there are two major problems:

  1. Businesses are coming to the wrong conclusions or are missing greater opportunities to gain critical insights that are waiting to be found in qualitative data; and
  2. So far, they are not getting a good return on the serious investment made in collecting qualitative data.

That’s where Leximancer and The Customer Insight Portal come in handy. Without any prior set-up or definition of terms (which can be laborious and time consuming), we take that unstructured data, including transcripts from call-center conversations, and provide insight that companies can actually use. That insight includes discovering unknown issues with customers that quantitative data can’t identify.

Just today on a call with a prospective customer we found that two different sources of feedback on their mobile devices delivered two very different sets of opinions. While both were making some complaints, one group was unhappy about physical features of the devices (e.g. the screen easily scratches and is difficult to read) and the other group was frustrated with calling plans and services.  So even at this high level of insight, the marketing team now knows how to adjust their message,  who to engage with a different message or promotion and can provide critical feedback to the product development group.

Simply, we provide a way for executives to get big return on that wise investment to capture all that data-yes quantitative, and yes qualitative.

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They’re all happy, right?

Posted on July 23, 2008. Filed under: Case study, Customer Insight Portal | Tags: , , , , , , , |

At Leximancer, we talk about finding the unknown-unknowns. Those moments where you look at the concept map and find connections you had no idea were there.

We were recently working with a technology client we’ll call Company Z (we’ve changed some specifics to keep client confidentiality – but the story is true) and they found out, through Leximancer analysis, that their very happy clients were happy for different reasons which had huge implications for strategic planning and deployment of resources.

Company Z is in a good place. Profits are solid. Things are running smoothly. Customers are happy. Being a smart company, they didn’t rest on their laurels and sought customer feedback.

The marketing department spent dozens of person hours (sound familiar?) crawling through comments to find patterns and insight.

When we sat down with Company Z, we took the same data they spent a couple of weeks on, uploaded it in a few minutes and we found that customers in the United States were satisfied for one reason and customers in Canada were satisfied for another reason.

Apparently U.S. customers like the service, but can’t find parts. In Canada, it was the exact reverse.

You could hear the jaws drop.  Not only did Leximancer find the same information in a few minutes that it took them weeks to sort through, it discovered something they had no idea was in the data. That is what it means to uncover the why, not just the what. That’s the power of Leximancer.

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Leximancer Launches The Customer Insight Portal

Posted on June 27, 2008. Filed under: Customer Insight Portal | Tags: , , , , , |

Leximancer is pleased to announce the availability of The Customer Insight Portal. We think it will forever change the way you think, look and respond to customer data.

Most companies are sitting on gigabytes of customer data: call center notes, comments received through corporate Web sites, e-mails, survey results and much more. They also know that the world is talking about them on Web sites and Blogs, but only get anecdotal evidence about what it all means.

The Customer Insight Portal, powered by Leximancer v3.0, unlocks the power of that data, both internal and external, by providing powerful insight into the root causes of customer attitudes and behaviors. We tell you why customers think or act a certain way, not just what they are thinking about, saying or doing. 

Not only are we the only company to give you this powerful insight, we now deliver it in an easy to use Software as a Service platform on the Web.

We know that The Customer Insight Portal will be bookmarked on the Web browsers of key executives, brand managers, customer service professionals, competitive intelligence experts, customer experience managers and others throughout the world. After all, hundreds of people are already using this powerful software to unlock insights in Europe, Asia and the Americas.

Take a look around, check out our demos, review our product features and then you’ll know what the excitement is about.

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