NEW YORK, Aug. 11, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Imagine that media monitoring reports show an uptick in people posting negative comments about your brand on Facebook. Something should be done—or should it? Harris Interactive (Nasdaq: HPOL) answers that question with Social Web Ladder, an audience segmentation tool that categorizes online speakers by social media involvement and influence. (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20100518/NY06801LOGO) Social Web Ladder organizes fans into behavioral buckets by the frequency, type, and influence of their participation in social media. This classification system eliminates overlapping categories too common in demographic –based laddering. Behavioral categorization guarantees consumers fall into one grouping only and can be more precisely targeted for marketing initiatives. Behavioral segmentations help public relations teams develop targeted crises strategies, and each scenario requires a different approach based on type of user. For example when a conversation is dominated by influencers, who initiate and drive discussion, intervention is needed to redirect the flow from negative to positive. However, if the discussion is carried by commenters, who primarily "retweet" and "like" posts from more vocal users, the best solution may be to let the conversation run its course on its own. "Social Web Ladder demystifies the who behind the what and helps businesses identify the most valuable brand influencers, then streamline engagement strategies around them," says Jeni Chapman, Executive Vice President of Brand and Communications Consulting and Head of Innovation. "This feature is in line with Harris' business objective—to unite the best traditional methodologies with the best new research techniques." When used in conjunction with Harris' Research Lifestreaming social intelligence platform, companies can also listen to their customers' otherwise private posts on networking sites and quantify the reach of their WON(SM)— word of network—the digitalized version of word of mouth. People are talking about your brand right now--- what should YOU do?