SEC Newgate launches €1.5m AI reputation tracking tool

SEC Newgate has launched a €1.5m artificial intelligence platform to track client reputations.

The platform, called True, has been developed with experts from international universities including Imperial College London, and Bocconi, the business school in Italy.

The system, which has been in development for almost three years, can analyse up to 30,000 items in a day, including online, print and social media content.

It looks at opinions, ranked on a scale of one to 100 based on favourability towards the organisation. It also looks at emotional responses, which are categorised by colour.

Different sources are weighted according to their importance and engagement rates are also examined.

The system currently works in Italian. There are plans to launch it in seven other languages, with an English version due next in the fourth quarter of 2020.

The test client for the tool has been TreNord, Italy's largest local rail services company. The firm operates in Lombardy, where the first coronavirus outbreak occurred. TreNord's reputation was measured before, during and after lockdown and it was discovered that it improved over the period.

SEC Newgate CEO Fiorenzo Tagliabue said: "True moves away from traditional reputation assessment tools, which only use sample data and were developed to create corporate rankings.

"Our AI platform is a solid and consistent tool, which can analyse an infinite number of data sources to support the protection and development of brand value. It provides senior communications professionals and company executives with detailed insights into all the elements that are positively or negatively impacting their brand's reputation, across a wide range of stakeholders."

On Monday, SEC Newgate announced its first move into North America via a new joint venture with US agency Bellwether Strategies.

SEC Newgate formed last year from the merger of Newgate owner Porta and Italian holding company SEC. Its UK-based agencies include Newgate and Newington.

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