Leave a comment

#SAQuake and Social: Analysed using Tracx Social Media Intelligence tool

On the 5th of August 2014, South Africa (well Jozi at the time) felt an unsettling jolt as the earth shook from under their feet. A pause, followed by wide eyed colleagues starring at each other, holding on to the edge of the tables asking each other whether they felt that.

Another violent shake. Panic. Run.”Stay under the door frames!”

What was that?

Now living in Joburg, we’ve had our fair share of earthquake scares, you see South Africa sits perfectly on top of the African tectonic plate, no fault lines, no earthquakes right? So feeling the ground shake underneath us is usually attributed to the deep level mining of our resources, with some blasts and shaft collapses so big, they used to rock parts of Jozi.

After a minute of vibrations that measured 5.3 on the richter scale, yes that’s right, South Africa actually had an earthquake, thousands of South Africans took to social media platforms. It had all happened so fast, we needed to know what that was! Did anyone else feel it? Is everyone okay? We needed to know NOW. It’s only natural that South Africans would flock to sources with real time updates and feeds, no one that is actively involved in the digital landsccape would want to wait until the next day when the newspaper wrote about it.


Social media was abuzz with earthquake/earth tremor updates. It got South Africans talking, for a brief moment and in the middle of the hype, excitement, fear, laughs, comedic banters, work had stopped. From CEO’s running out of the offices to employees seeking refuge under glass tables, nothing mattered more than sharing this experience. And boy did we share it.

Digital Republic is the sole licence provider of Tracx, a social media intelligence tool, we use this tool everyday to scan the vast horizons of the internet, helping brands find a digital piece of their business objectives puzzle and streamline, refine, analyse and strategise this information in order to help brands see the bigger picture of their puzzle.

We used the Tracx tool to track the online activity happening relating to the earthquake. We used a set of keywords that we wanted to track: [jozi tremor] OR [#jozitremor] OR [#earthtremor] OR [earth tremor] OR [earthquake] OR [#tremorsurvivor] OR [quake] OR [richter] OR [#joburgtremor] OR [#saquake] saved our changes and waited for Tracx (3 miniutes max)  to start pulling in data from all over the world relating to those keywords on the 5th and 6th of August 2014.


During hte specified period there were a massive 14 877 posts relating to the quake with 44 742 interactions. The posts generated 4 351 conversations and was mentioned a total of 16 136 times. Over 40 000 people were reached and the conversations had a density of 9.6 people per conversation.

Twitter had the most activity on the day of the quake and this generally is attributed to the fact that people use Twitter to get up to date news in real time from various news sources that have Twitter profiles. Twitter was seen in this instance as the platform that has the most activity in terms of posts and interactions as it was a news source for many whereas Facebook was more a personal platform where people were speaking to their peers about the incident.

audience conversation drivers

There were slightly more females (13 629) than males  (10 0240), ranging from all ages who talked about the quake. This information is subject to whether the audience member has set their gender to either male or female on their social media profiles. The top 5 words that were used that drove conversation relating to the quake were: earthquake (used 11 119 times), tremor (used 3 882 times), earth (used 2 408 times), quake (used 2 374 times) and africa (used 2 008 times)

top 5  influencers The top 5 influencers were EWN Reporter, eNCA, Times LIVE, 94.7 Highveld Stereo and Earthquake Tsunamis, with Highveld having the greatest reach of over 8 000 people with a very high impact per post of 9 287. When comparatively  looking at these top 5 influencers  we can see the activity volume of EWN Reporter is the highest across all influencers.


geo heat map world

Tracx has this amazing geo heat maps function that allows you to track where in the  world your queried keywords are being used. The SA Quake was talked about all over the world, in the states to Europe were speaking about the 1 minute earthquake that we South Africans actually felt.


geo heat map afrocaLooking at just Africa we can see that the majority of the data was created in South Africa, with Gauteng having the most amounts of posts and interactions relating to the quake in the whole world.

geo heat map south africaGauteng had 29 416 posts and interactions whilst Cape Town had 10 893 followed by KZN with 4 953. Don’t you just love these geo heat maps? They literally blow us away at the level of technology that Tracx operates on, it’s mind blowing. You can know eactly where people are talking, and what they are talking about online.

With the quake in yesterday’s news and South Africa going back to their daily work routine, you may want to check out Tracx for your business. Real time data analysed really intelligently with the Tracx Social Media Intelligence tool, it really is digitally insightful.

To find out more about Tracx and how it could be used to help measure your brand’s online social performance, drop us a mail om hello@digitalrepublic.co.za,  give us a call on 011 582 9600 or visit our website: http://www.digitalrepublic.co.za


Written BY: #DRTracy

Tracy avatar with name

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: