narratif Sports Channel

Photo by TongRo Images/TongRo Images / Getty Images
Photo by TongRo Images/TongRo Images / Getty Images

Twitter has without doubt has the best news and commentary about sporting events. Anyone can post from anywhere, at anytime - in the stadium, the dressing room, or in front of their television.

Our Sports Channel discovers and organises the top sports stories from Twitter at any time of the day. It also shows you the top influencers in each conversation.

So if you want to contribute or discover the latest information on sports worldwide, select the narratif Sports Channel in Trends.

This topical Twitter channel is made possible by the narratif engine. Our technology makes it easy to define new topical feeds, with little maintenance overhead. The narratif engine continually extracts an up-to-date semantic model from the live feed. This semantic model is used to collect and organise the relevant tweets.

Three Rules for Trending on Twitter

If you understand the mechanism hidden behind "trends" and "trending", it is possible to develop a more profound understanding of how to influence wider audiences on social media platforms like Twitter. However, in order to gain a better perspective on the emerging trends and follow their development, the most effective and insightful way to do so is with the help of narratif's Trends application, which allows you to see not only the global trending topics, but also the conversations evolving around them. 

It does not matter whether the newest trend is the Taylor Swift vs. Apple scandal, or the juiciest celebrity fathers day celebration insights; trends tend to occupy a large portion of our daily discussions, both in real life and social media. So in order to boost one's credibility in any Twitter conversation, and to understand the potential impact, it is necessary to follow the present trends. 

Before diving directly into Twitter, be aware that it is actually very difficult to see how any particular content ever manages to go viral among the 500 million tweets posted every day and 9,457 every second. So the question remains: what are the features which allow some posts to attract such immense attention?

The process of trend development usually follows a similar pattern of preconditions:

1. The Happening
The difference between a trend and a popular story is the fact that trends are popular in real-time, meaning there is a groundbreaking event which attracts some attention at a certain point of time, rather than a over a longer period. narratif Trends is effective at collecting the story and the backstory into one convenient timeline, so you can understand it.

2. Widespread
In order for a story to reach a trend potential it has to encompass a large number of tweeters. For example, the FIFA World Cup would not achieve the trend status in Twitter if not for the football lovers worldwide following and tweeting about the event. narratif Trends finds and quantifies the influencers in the given story, based on their actual involvement and their reach. 

3. Dramatical increase
This is where a lot of the potential trends lose their momentum, for within the Twitter algorithm one of the preconditions of a #hashtag or a mention to become a trend is the dramatical increase in the people engaged in the topic, in comparison to the baseline conversation. narratif Trends quantifies and charts the evolution of the whole story, so you can understand the key turning points.

If these preconditions are fulfilled than a topic has the utmost possibility of becoming a trend.

Events, narratif Discover, and Twitter

Probably one of the strongest business applications for utilising Twitter is around events. Twitter shines around any event, be it a sporting event, TV show, trade show, product release, news event, or natural disaster. The immediacy and universal availability of the medium are unrivalled for this purpose.

This regularly presents a great opportunity for public relations, content marketing, and sales lead engagement.

The problem is that conversations around events emerge unexpectedly, move quickly, and go in surprising directions. There really is no guarantee that every group, clique, and conversation will stick to one hashtag, and many situations are too emergent or chaotic to neatly follow an arbitrary convention.

If you are in the field attending the event, or out of the office when some issue emerges, how do you maintain awareness of the situations so you can gain the advantage?

narratif Trends and Discover are uniquely designed for this purpose. The real-time concept learning means that narratif can track multiple emerging issues and novel key-terms and tags, so you don't have to. The visual storyboard collates the issues and makes it simple to maintain awareness while in the field. It even dynamically identifies the influencers behind each situation.

Shortly, we will also offer email updates which send you the story-boards from the latest time window. These story-boards are retained on our cloud servers so you can track back to find the root cause of an issue.

Our enterprise beta testers found that Discover revolutionised their event awareness, to the point where it became apparent that situations on Twitter change too fast to allow for content to be approved after the fact. narratif Discover lets people understand and use Twitter at a new level.

7 Steps for Event Engagement with narratif:

  1. Prepare a Framing statement for your product or service. This will guide your content creation and your responses.
  2. It may help to have pre-approved content items ready for immediate use when a story warrants it, but be prepared to adapt to the tone and direction of the conversation.
  3. Monitor narratif Trends to watch for major breaking situations.
  4. Use narratif Discover to scan for more specific events matching your topics or brands of interest.
  5. When you find a relevant situation, use narratif to quickly understand the context and tone of the situation.  Maybe find a specific tweet from an influential person to comment on.
  6. Quickly adapt your message to the situation, and add selected hashtags, keywords, and mentions as identified by narratif for this situation... and send.
  7. Use narratif Discover to track this issue and quantify the impact of your contribution on the conversation. You may want to contribute further tweets as appropriate.

Remember to keep it appropriate, interesting, and timely.

Announcing ... A Visual Digest of Twitter.

narratif is very pleased to announce a live, visual summary of the top breaking stories on Twitter.

As part of our vision of an accessible and effortless Twitter experience, we have been working to create a living summary of the most important stories. This summary is organised as a card deck, so it is easy to understand and explore. The summary is generated automatically and frequently - seeing how the stories break and change over time is fascinating. In fact, understanding how the nature of the conversation on Twitter can alter completely in a matter of an hour makes it clear that there is no social medium quite like it.

Our summary is not biased or delayed by human curation. This is pure Twitter.

Each story card is in fact a gateway to explore the many conversations related to that story, simply flip the card, then use the magnifying glass buttons to drill deep into the related stories, or search the back-story on Twitter or in Google.

Shortly, you will also be able to subscribe to the breaking stories summary, or summaries of your own customised searches in Discover or Place. This will allow you to receive regular updates in your email, and travel back in time to see the conversations you missed. More soon on this.

To access narratif Trends, please click here.

Framing: the Science behind Content Marketing

Frame Analysis is a technique used for analysing and understanding the narratives and contexts in complex media data, and was developed by and for professionals who understand that subtle bias and reframing of a story can have a massive impact on public opinion. 

In simple terms, a frame is the impression formed in people's minds when they think about some brand or issue. A negative frame can be very hard to turn around. But frames are much more nuanced than simple positive or negative sentiment. They can assert the 'well known' strengths and weaknesses of the subject, the 'expected' attributes, and are often painted with a strong emotional palette. Some frames are regarded as sacrosanct, some are tragic or hopeful, and others are repugnant.

For an advertiser, understanding the way an issue is framed is vital for designing your message, or not engaging at all with certain issues. Neglect of framing has led to famous social media disasters for advertisers. Reframing an issue or a brand is a key outcome in PR, politics, media, and advertising

The steps involved in this process are:

  1. Write down your desired frame for your product, service, brand, or issue. A list of text bullet points can work fine. Stick it on your wall.
  2. Understand the frames which are present in the various conversations on Twitter which are relevant to your topic. narratif Discover is very good for this.
  3. Create or curate content which carefully reinforces your desired frame, and publish in a conversation which is receptive and potentially sympathetic. Do not try to directly contradict a hostile conversation. narratif Place is my preferred method for finding conversations which resonate with my desired framing.

At narratif, our products have been designed from the ground up to find, collate, and report the most important frames, or stories, which surround any topic of interest, without destroying the context of these rich artefacts. As a result, it is now quite easy to view the most relevant stories and understand their context, their framing, their trajectory over time, and what they actually mean for you.

As further reading, I can really recommend the work of Daniel Kahneman(1), a Nobel Prize winning cognitive psychologist. Tversky and Kahneman’s work clearly showed that people are influenced by framing and plausible stories to a remarkable degree.

  1. Kahneman, Daniel. Thinking, fast and slow. Macmillan, 2011.


Andrew E. Smith

Andrew is a co-founder and Chief Scientist of narratif and has over 15 years of experience in text analytics.

7 steps to promote your blog on Twitter with narratif Place

1. Know your audience

Find and follow people with similar interests and follow back when someone follows you. Search on your blog post content using narratif Place to find relevant conversations happening on Twitter right now. Reach out to people who are influential within those conversations by following them or favoriting their tweets.

2. Research keywords

Each tweet is only 140 characters, so make every word count by including keywords that your audience are already using in active Twitter conversations. Select a conversation in Place that matches your blog content to see the top keywords for that conversation. 

3. Select active hashtags

Include one or two active, topic-specific hashtags to boost your visibility with your target audience. Twitter recommends no more than two hashtags per tweet, so avoid overloading your tweet with too many hashtags, or with hashtags that are ineffective. Place recommends hashtags that are popular within the conversations matching your blog post. You can also use Place to search for a specific hashtag to see the broader conversations associated with that hashtag.

4. Include visuals

Tweets with images attract more attention and are more likely to be retweeted and favorited. When promoting primarily visual blog posts, try entering a description of the key ideas your image communicates into Place to find the related conversations. Use the suggested keywords and hashtags in your tweet to make it easier to find your image through searches.

5. Use Twitter cards

Twitter cards that display automatically when you post a link to your posts are a great way to highlight your content, and to squeeze more information into your tweet. Card plugins are available for many blog platforms. Find out more about Twitter Cards CMS integration here.

6. Tweet regularly

It's ok to tweet about each post more than once! Try using different keywords and hashtags and tweeting at different times of the day to target different conversations to reach a wider audience. Place charts the volume of each conversation over time to help you decide when to join each conversation.

7. Keep the conversation going

Stay engaged with the conversation to see what people thought about your post, reply to feedback and get ideas for your next post!  Place finds Twitter conversations in real-time, so you can keep searching on your content over time to see how the conversation has changed, and find interesting tweets to retweet or reply to, to continue the conversation.

Sign up to try narratif Place for free

Find your voice on Twitter

Would Twitter be more useful to you if you immediately knew what conversations were occurring that were relevant to you?

We think this process should not take months (or years) of trial and error, finding which people to follow, and slowly increasing your follower count. After all that effort, there is still no guarantee that new conversations have not emerged which you really should be involved with.

Neither should this process assume that you are only interested in the same single topic month in, month out. (Personally I get really irritated by this).

We are also opposed to spam and spam bots, and neither are we fond of automated ad optimisation engines. These indiscriminate machines are abusing the medium, alienating users from your brand, and may ultimately destroy the medium (as they did with INN).

We have a vision of an intelligent message highway, where anyone, whether a new user or a veteran, can describe in their own words what they are interested in today. The gateway will then connect them with the most relevant conversations, whether they used the best keywords and hashtags or not. We call this smart content delivery.

So in this vision, anyone can immediately tune in to an interesting thread, listen for a while to get on the same page, and then join in appropriately. Like joining a conversation at a cocktail party without looking like an idiot.

We believe that you cannot communicate effectively without listening.

We also believe that effective communication should be democratic - not just the preserve of big brands.

To make this a reality, we have created the narratif engine for smart content delivery. We connect people with content that is relevant to their immediate need, in real time, and when they don't really know how to find it for themselves.

To get this vision on the road, we have placed the narratif engine alongside Twitter.

We are excited to launch two gateways to this message highway:

narratif Discover 

Discover has a keyword search interface, but delivers far more than a keyword search. This is great if you are curious about a general topic or a name, and want to find relevant conversations to join. You can access the Discover gateway here.

narratif Place

Place is designed for people who have a story to tell - it could be a press release, a blog, a recipe, a newspaper article, or just a tweet that is important.

Place lets you enter your story text, and then connects you with Twitter conversations that are relevant to one or more themes within your story, and are ongoing within the last 7 days. You can then quickly review any relevant conversations, and see if your story and language are appropriate and sympathetic to the thread.You can see who are the thought leaders in the thread, and the key ideas.

Of course there might not be any good conversation matches to your message at a given time, but it is important to know that so you can either recast your message, or come back at another time.

The Place gateway is here.


We are really excited by the promise of a message highway, with smart message delivery. The promise of easily connecting with the conversations you actually need right now, involving people from all over the world, is compelling. We hope to see you out there.

Andrew E. Smith

Andrew is a co-founder and Chief Scientist of narratif and has over 15 years of experience in text analytics.

Announcing narratif Place Beta


Today we’re excited to announce the launch of our narratif Place Beta program.

narratif Place connects you with a receptive audience for your content on Twitter, by automatically:

  • Analysing your content, press release or blog post, to find relevant topics that are being discussed right now on Twitter.
  • Identifying influential people who are talking about these topics so you can engage with receptive influencers and use their trust and reach to get to a much larger audience. 
  • Recommending keywords and hashtags that people are using so that you can optimise your tweets or buy ads to reach an already engaged audience. 
  • Measuring how topics from your content resonate and with whom, after your content has been published.

We are pleased to invite you to join our free Beta program, and look forward to hearing your feedback.

Find out more about narratif Place here, or sign up for the Beta program here.


Introduction to narratif

With over 2 billion social media users in 2013 and over 500 million tweets per day, social media is exploding. The importance of social media is also undeniable, from breaking news to consumer’s reaction to new products, understanding and responding to social media chatter is critical. However, social media is, by its very nature, an unruly and noisy platform. It often seems like everybody is shouting at once and each post/tweet is only a fragment in a larger unfolding story. Multiple stories evolve and are intermixed, and people use different language to talk about the same thing.  

In brand management and content marketing it is important to find social media conversations about your brand, product or industry, respond to reputation issues and frame marketing messages. These conversations are often hidden in the noise on platforms such as Twitter - you need to find the small set of people (the ‘influencers’) who have the largest impact on how your brand is seen by social media users. Social media also provides a unique advertising platform, but finding the right audience amongst the noise is difficult.

With the speed of social media, platforms such as Twitter are often the source of breaking news, with the most famous example being @ReallyVirtual’s tweets revealing the Bin Laden raid. But again, locating one person’s tweets among 500 million tweets is like finding a needle in a haystack, especially when that haystack is constantly being tossed around. 

Traditional social media listening platforms try to deal with finding the relevant information amongst the noise through complex search queries. These queries use boolean operators such as AND, OR, NOT, NEAR to link keywords. With the ever increasing noise and the unique  language of Twitter (abbreviations, hashtags, distortions of words), these search queries are ballooning in size, often to 100s of keywords and pages of boolean operators. These queries are difficult to create (and are often created by experts or consultants) and require constant maintenance due to how quickly language on Twitter evolves.

narratif Discover is a new social media platform designed to provide awareness of what you don't know, that has the potential to completely change the way marketing creatives, journalists, bloggers, and PR agencies use Twitter. Rather than users having to focus on specifying long, complex keyword search queries Discover automatically generates, in real-time, a map of keywords (called the semantic schema) from just one or two keywords which specifies the general area of interest.

For example, a search for Google automatically expands the search to include other terms closely associated with the term Google that exist on Twitter now. Today this includes the terms Waze, Lunar X-Prize and WikiLeaks. These relationships between terms are not hardcoded into Discover, but are actually automatically discovered from the real-time data itself. In the ever changing world of Twitter, this is important as today Google may be associated with WikiLeaks, but tomorrow it may be Facebook that is associated with WikiLeaks. A static set of connections just won’t work on social media. 

Using the semantic schema has two key advantages over keyword query based listening:

  1. This large set of keywords casts a very wide net and returns a large number of tweets, many of which do not contain the original Google search term but are still relevant to your topic of interest. 

    Results from narratif Discover provide complete coverage as well as much needed context. 
  2. As Discover knows how the large set of keywords are related to each other on Twitter, it is also able to automatically group the results into stories (or sub-topics or conversations). For instance, a search for Google gives a number of stories, including one about Sherrif’s wanting Google to turn off Waze’s police tracking feature, and one about WikiLeaks demanding answers after Google handed over emails to the US government. 

    By separating results into coherent stories, narratif Discover makes it easy for a user to understand all the stories happening in their area of interest at a glance, then zoom in and monitor stories which are of interest while quickly discarding the irrelevant. 

The technology behind narratif Discover was developed at The University of Queensland by Dr Andrew Smith. Andrew is a co-founder and Chief Scientist of narratif and has over 14 years of experience in text analytics. The genesis of narratif came from Andrew realising that text contains many different worldviews, and this is especially the case in social media where there are so many different connections and views on important events, you need a system that acts like a prism, which can showcase the different colours of conversation. narratif’s platform is that prism.