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Conversation Shapes Your World

November 9, 2020

Conversation Shapes Your World

Whether it’s business, politics, or culture, conversation generates buzz, creates movements, influences opinion, and moves markets. With hundreds of thousands of news sources publishing every day, and billions of people talking non-stop, making sense of it all is a daunting challenge.

Meeting this challenge means quantifying and analyzing two things: Conversation Trends, and Narrative Intelligence. Let’s take a moment to talk about what these are, and how Kudzu uses them to help you make sense of the conversations that shape your world.

You see the way conversations take shape: Something happens that grabs people’s attention, and all of a sudden everyone is talking about it. It could be the emergence of a new technology, a controversial movie, civil unrest, or a contentious election. The way a conversation evolves can make or ruin fortunes, fundamentally change the way society thinks about its institutions, or even undo nations and governments.

Conversation Trends are the words and ideas that are threaded throughout these conversations, and the ways they rise and fall in news articles, online videos, and social media posts. These trends are the “nuts and bolts” of conversations. Think of them as frameworks around which conversations are built, things that influencers can hook into and around which opinions can coalesce.

Conversations rise and fall because people take part in them. In that sense, it’s very simple. But conversations with the power to shape your world are more complex than that. What matters isn’t just what’s being talked about, but who is doing the talking, when they choose to talk, and the audience they’re talking to. This is what we call Narrative Intelligence.

Who said what? What exactly did they say? When did they say it? Who is their audience? How big is their influence? Under which national or factional influence do they operate? What is their agenda, and are they successful advancing it?

In the next post, we’ll talk about how we do this, and show you some real-world examples of how you can use Kudzu to make sense of all this and more.

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