Insightful Innovators

Abdurrahman Al-Husami

CEO and Founder

Makana 360

Winner 2024

Abdurrahman Al-Husami

What is your job title? How do you use social listening in your work?

As the CEO and Founder of Makana 360, I leverage social listening to drive our data-driven communication strategies. We use advanced tools to gather and analyze digital conversations across platforms, helping us understand audience behaviors, cultural trends, and consumer sentiments. This insight informs everything from product development to reputation management for our diverse clientele, spanning financial institutions, governments, NGOs, and more.

What’s your background? How did you get into social listening?

With over 16 years of experience in digital communications and political strategy, initially Head of Digital Communication at the Royal Hashemite Court and then as a Media and Communications Advisor for the Prime Minister of Jordan, I’ve always been intrigued by the power of data in shaping public narratives. This interest led me to found Makana 360, focusing on social listening to offer nuanced, culturally informed insights into audience journeys and brand reputations.

What’s been the project you’ve been most proud to work on?

Among many, Jordan Economic Modernization Vision, Crown Prince Foundation, the World Cup 2022 Fans Analysis stands out. Leveraging social listening, we provided comprehensive insights into fan sentiments, behaviors, and trends, significantly impacting marketing strategies and fan engagement for our client, reflecting our capability to handle high-profile, global-scale projects.

What’s the biggest misconception about your work?

The biggest misconception is that social listening is just about monitoring social media for brand mentions. In reality, it’s an intricate analysis that offers deep insights into consumer behavior, societal trends, and the effectiveness of communication strategies, requiring a blend of technology, human intuition, and cultural understanding.

Any nightmare clients? Why? (No names)

Every client presents unique challenges, but rather than nightmares, we view these as opportunities to push our boundaries, innovate, and refine our solutions. Challenges often arise from misaligned expectations or communication gaps, emphasizing the importance of clear dialogue and collaboration from the outset.

Is there anything that you’re doing with social data that you don’t see others doing? Any missed opportunities?

At Makana 360, we transcend traditional boundaries by weaving social listening insights seamlessly with commercial, cultural, and political understanding, with a special focus on the Arabic-speaking regions of the Middle East. We’re not just collecting data; we’re deeply integrating it into organizational strategies, ensuring every piece of insight has a direct impact on our clients’ objectives. This distinct approach—merging cutting-edge technological analysis with profound regional insights and aligning it closely with business and community strategies—is something we believe is critically undervalued in the industry. It’s not merely about the tools at our disposal but about how we interpret and apply the data to create meaningful, actionable strategies. Our work goes beyond monitoring; it’s about making sense of the noise and uncovering the stories that truly matter, offering a depth of understanding that’s unparalleled.

Who has made a lasting impression on you? Any SI heroes?

Professionals who blend social intelligence with humanitarian goals, using data to drive social public change, inspire me. The ability to listen and respond to the needs of communities, especially in crisis situations, showcases the true potential of social intelligence.

How do you think the social intelligence industry will evolve in the next few years?

The industry will likely see more advanced AI integration for predictive analytics, a greater emphasis on privacy-compliant data gathering, and a broader application of insights beyond marketing—into product development, policy-making, and even crisis management.

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