We hold our analysts to the highest standards and our ultimate goal is to provide our clients with social media intelligence reports that contain targeted results and analytical findings that directly support their needs. However, without the right foundation, you run the risk of having key information overlooked. We came up with the ultimate guide to creating an order request that increases your chances of finding the most valuable social media intelligence results.
Start by making sure you don’t overlook these 5 essential questions!
In the past, many users have asked us what exact details should be included in an order request. This question can be difficult to answer given that every search request is unique, but any good deep report starts with the basics:
1. What is the subject’s full name?
Don’t overlook this most basic of parameters! When our analysts begin to conduct a social media intelligence search, the subject’s full name is the first detail they look for within an order request. We recommend having at least the subject’s first and last name. If you are able to find the subject’s middle name, maiden names, and/or suffixes please include that as well!
PRO TIP: Include nicknames and known aliases! Many individuals use their nicknames when creating social media accounts. For example, a subject whose first name is Nicole might have an Instagram username that includes the name Nikki rather that Nicole. We have also found that some subjects have multiple social media accounts within one platform.
2. Where does the subject live?
While this question might seem simple, we often receive order requests that only include one part of an individual’s address — such as the city they live in. When asking yourself this question we recommend looking at it from a mailing perspective. In other words try to include the subjects full street address, city, and state.
PRO TIP: Don’t forget the state! In some instances we have received order requests that only include the city, but some city can be found in multiple states. An example of this is the city Portland does the subject live in Maine or Oregon? Additionally, including past locations and potential family locations can be useful to identify key social media intelligence .
3. What is the subject’s DOB?
The subject’s age is a distinctive detail that can help an analyst pinpoint the right individual. This can be very helpful when looking at fathers and sons with the same name. At this point our analyst would look at the order request and check to see if the subject’s date of birth was included. If so, the analyst would eliminate those that do not fit the age criteria.
PRO TIP: If you are unable to find the subject’s full date of birth, we recommend including an estimated age. For example, you can provide us with an age range such as 24 to 27. Please note that if you do include a range it would be best to try to keep it at a 2 to 4 year difference. A range of 18 to 35 is too large of an age gap making it more difficult to pinpoint the right subject.
4. What is the subject’s phone number and email address?
Including the subject’s phone number and email address in your order request is another distinctive detail that can help an analyst pinpoint the correct individual. If you are not able to find out where your subject lives, but do have their phone number we can use the area code to figure out where they live or have lived in the past. Additionally, phone numbers and email addresses are linked to social media accounts which can help us verify ownership.
PRO TIP: Email addresses can sometime include hidden information about the subject. For example, many people include numbers like 96 or 79 which can potentially refer to the year the subject was born. Moveover, people also like to include nicknames, middle names, and aliases when creating their email addresses.
5. What is the subject’s employment and education history?
Knowing the subject’s employment/education history can be ground breaking for analysts. Due to probability, there is a very small chance that someone with the same name and age also went to the same school and worked at the same company; therefore, this information is usually what helps analyst ensure they have found the correct subject.
PRO TIP: When it comes to education history we have found that college information has proven to be more beneficial than high school information. In many cases college records contain more accessible public information and are more up to date.
Make sure your Scope is on-point!
The Scope defines the length and the depth of a social media intelligence search for our Deep Reports. A good Scope provides the analyst with sufficient detail to direct the research and discovery to provide results that best support the requester’s needs.
A majority of our analysts consider the Scope to be the most important section of an order request. We recommend approaching the Scope from a summary perspective: Just tell us why you are submitting the social media intelligence request! For example, if the analyst knows that there is a lawsuit involving a claim that resulted in a physical injury and is provided with the Date of Loss (DOL), the analyst can focus their search and analysis on those aspects and limit the results.
In many cases we have noticed that the best Scopes are those written like a story — including a beginning, middle, and end. We have created the following hypothetical order request for educational purposes.
A client want us to look into the criminal history and social media accounts for subject John Doe. The client’s outcome goal is for us to find any information that point to the subject partaking in any illegal activity. This client has completed an order request form with the following Scope section. Below is a break down of the Scope section.
John Doe caused a serious motor vehicle accident on 11-12-2017 while driving a truck for Hall Automotive Product, Inc. in Philadelphia, PA injuring our clients. It has come to our attention that John Doe uses the alias David Brown. The alias David Brown has serious criminal charges that were filed against him. Please identify all negative content regarding David Brown or John Doe including past criminal history, Social Media accounts, and other problems with the law.’
Date Ranges Help Analysts Focus on the Social Media Intelligence you Need!
Dates are particularly beneficial when conducting a social media intelligence search. Most users tend to only provide us with a time frame when it is relevant to their case. For example, in an insurance fraud claim: Subject A has submitted an insurance claim detailing that they injured their right hand while at work on July 8, 2015. An order request was submitted asking us to conduct a deep report for any information on the injury from July 2015 to July 2016. The outcome goal is to verify that subject A did not submit a fraudulent claim.
However, there are some instances where it might not seem obvious to include a time frame. For example, we often get order requests where the client’s outcome goal is “We want to know their overall social media presence”. In these cases, the reason behind the outcome is important to include. In this example, the true objective was to know the subject’s activities since they were terminated. Including the date when they were terminated from their job would inform the analyst to only include social media information from that date forward.
Try incorporating these recommendations next time you complete a social media intelligence order request! This ensures that your order is not placed on-hold and delayed. It is important to address that every requester’s needs are different, but with the right foundation we increase the chances to discover results that are tailored to support your unique needs.