Network science is based on the theory that networks are everywhere and every person — and brand — is always forming a series of mappable relationships and connections. And within these networks exist a web of interconnected nodes (which are individuals or entities).

Albert-László Barabási, a well-known researcher in network science, co-founded Maven7 as a company that applies network science to organizational diagnostics and HR. Then, more recently, he realized the potential in applying this theory to the marketing realm and created Diktio Labs as a sub-brand focused squarely on the marketing realm.

[caption id="attachment_2641" align="alignright" width="150"]Chris Dobson Chris Dobson[/caption]

“Instead of taking the volume-based approach of looking at how often a brand is mentioned or retweeted, we map networks between entities,” says Chris Dobson, who left his post as Edelman’s managing director of emerging markets to become a strategic advisor to Diktio Labs earlier this year. “You are only as important as the people you can mobilize.”

Diktio Labs’ offering is a suite of online community and influence mapping tools that scrape publicly-available data from the major social networks, as well as sites like WordPress, Reddit, Tumblr and Wikipedia. Then, the technology applies algorithms that figure out things like the 10% of people within a network who can reach 80% of the rest.

"We had a client in biodegradable diapers who wanted to look at the intersection of two communities: the parenting and the ecological community," said Demet Dagdelen, the startup’s lead data analyst, citing another use case. "We mapped both of these communities and found those people who acted as bridges between them."

The ultimate value proposition for the VC-backed firm is, unsurprisingly, better marketing return for fewer dollars spent. The cost of its technology varies based on factors like the number of markets and scope of data, but the range is from $5k into six figures.

Diktio Labs works mostly with agencies, but on occasion it contracts directly with brands. The startup plans to focus primarily on US and UK markets, but has also made strides in Latin America and Russia. There are no plans to build further into an outright consultancy, instead, it plans to seek partnerships with agencies.

“We’re looking to hook clients with bite-size projects so they can see the value,” Dobson says. “We’re not trying to change the planning process overnight.”

It closed its first round of funding out of Hungary last year and is looking to secure a second round this fall.