Importing data into Tableau Desktop

API customers can use Meltwater’s Tableau Web Data Connector to bring earned media content and analytics into their workbooks. This guide explains how to get started with the connector.

Note that not all customers have access to all of the API features below. If you are unsure check with your account manager or the support team.

How-to video

This quick video shows you how to bring earned media exports and analysis results into Tableau:


Accessing the Meltwater Web Data Connector

In Tableau Desktop, under the Data menu select New Data Source.

Under the “To a Server” section select Web Data Connector.


This opens the Web Data Connector window. Enter https://api.meltwater.com/connect/tableau/ in the location bar.


Hit [return ⏎]. This will load the connector wizard.

Providing your Meltwater API credentials

The first step of using the connector is to provide your Meltwater API credentials:


Enter your API token and click Next to continue.

Next you will be asked what data you’d like to import. Each option is covered in the following sections.

Earned media exports

This section covers how you can import the results of a “one-time” or “recurring” earned media export into Tableau.

Please make sure you have an ACTIVE recurring export or FINISHED one-time export export before you proceed.

Selecting an export

To import an export result, for the second wizard step select Earned Media - One-time Export or Earned Media - Recurring Export.


Click Next to continue, where you will be shown your list of exports which are available for import.

In the list exports are identified by their ID and the name of the first search / tag in the export configuration.


Select an export then click Run to finish the wizard and return to Tableau.

Configuring tables in your data source

When you are returned to Tableau you will be in the Data Source editor. At this point you will need to select which of the tables provided by the connector you’d like to have in your data source.

For an earned media export you’ll see the following tables:

  • Documents
  • Key Phrases
  • Authors
  • Matched Keywords
  • Tags

Drag the tables you need into the top right panel. The Documents table is the main table with all the search result documents. The rest of the tables contain additional information and use document_id as the foreign key to relate to the Documents table. If you drag multiple tables into your data source Tableau will attempt to suggest a column to join the tables on.


If you like you can click the Update Now button to get a 1000 row preview of the data.

Using imported data in a worksheet

Navigate to your Tableau worksheet. This starts the Tableau data extract creation process and imports the data into the workbook.


Once done Sheet 1 is activated you can see all available Dimensions and Measures on the Data tab on the left.


Now the data is ready to be dragged and dropped into the sheet to start creating reports.


Refreshing your data

When you set up the connector, then first bring data into a worksheet, Tableau creates an ‘extract’ of the data.

If you’d like to refresh the data (for example you have imported a recurring export and want the latest data) you need to refresh the extract. Select the data source in the Data menu and choose the refresh extract option:


Consumption of API limits

For earned media exports the connector itself will not consume your API limits. For one-time exports your limits are consumed when you create the export using the Export Console or by calling the API. For recurring exports your limits are consumed each time the export is run on your chosen schedule by the API. Refreshing the data for an export in Tableau simply downloads the existing export result.

Earned media analytics

This section covers how you can import the results of an earned media analysis into Tableau.

Please make sure you have at least one Saved Search in your Meltwater account before you proceed.

Configuring an analysis

To import an analysis result, for the second wizard step select Earned Media - Analytics. Click Next to continue.


Next you need to configure your analytics request:

  • Firstly choose the saved search you’d like to use
  • Next choose a start and end date for your analysis


Now choose an analysis type, for example “Top key phrases”.


The remaining options will depend on the analysis type you choose. Select options for the remaining parameters.

Click Run to finish the wizard and return to Tableau.

Configuring tables in your data source

When you are returned to Tableau you will be in the Data Source editor.

Most analysis types will only return one table, which is automatically included in your data source. You can immediately start using the data in a worksheet.

The ‘Summary’ analysis however includes a number of tables:

  • Daily timeseries
  • Hourly timeseries
  • Sentiment
  • Summary
  • Top countries
  • Top languages

Drag one of these tables into your data source, then you will be ready to use the data in a worksheet.

Using imported data in a worksheet

Navigate to your Tableau worksheet. This starts the Tableau data extract creation process and imports the data into the workbook.


Once done Sheet 1 is activated you can see all available Dimensions and Measures on the Data tab on the left.

Now the data is ready to be dragged and dropped into the sheet to start creating reports.

Refreshing data

For earned media analytics refreshing the extract doen’t make sense as the API will be called with the same date range and you will get exactly the same results. You can edit your connection if you’d like to bring in analysis results for a more recent time frame.

Consumption of API limits

For earned media analytics, the connector will call the appropriate analytics endpoint. Therefore when you first fetch data through the connector, or the connector refreshes the data, each time this will use one of your analysis calls from your limit.

Owned social analytics

This section covers how you can import the results of an owned social analysis into Tableau.

Please make sure you have at least one owned social connection configured in your Meltwater account before you proceed.

Configuring an analysis

To import an analysis result, for the second wizard step select Owned Social - Analytics. Click Next to continue.


Next you need to configure your analytics request.


Firstly you will need to specify a time period, you can choose from:

  • Relative - A period that will automatically change if you refresh your data in future. As an example, if you specify 7 days, the period will be one week up until “yesterday”. If you refresh your data in a week’s time, the time window will automatically move to a week later.
  • Absolute - A fixed start and end date for the analysis which will not change automatically.

Next you will need to choose a source, for example “Facebook”.

Based upon the source you have chosen, next you will need to choose one or more social accounts. These are the accounts connected to your Meltwater account.

Finally you will need to choose an analysis type:

  • Accounts - Metrics - Numeric - import simple numeric metrics, such as the number of fans for a Facebook page
  • Accounts - Metrics - Breakdown - import metrics broken down by a concept, such as countries of Facebook page fans
  • Accounts - Metrics - Nested Breakdown - import metrics broken down by multiple concepts, such as the age and gender of Facebook page fans
  • Accounts - Metrics - Heatmap - import metrics broken down by date and hour, such as when Facebook fans are online during the day
  • Accounts - Posts - Top Posts - import top performing posts for an account, for example sorted by engagement rate

Depending on the analysis type you choose you may be asked for additional choices. For example, if you choose Facebook, then numeric metrics you will be asked to choose the metrics.


Click Run to finish the wizard and return to Tableau.

Configuring tables in your data source

When you are returned to Tableau you will be in the Data Source editor.

All owned social analysis types will only return one table, which is automatically included in your data source. If so you can immediately start using the data in a worksheet.

Using imported data in a worksheet

Navigate to your Tableau worksheet. This starts the Tableau data extract creation process and imports the data into the workbook.


Once done Sheet 1 is activated you can see all available Dimensions and Measures on the Data tab on the left.

Now the data is ready to be dragged and dropped into the sheet to start creating reports.

Refreshing data

When you set up the connector, then first bring data into a worksheet, Tableau creates an ‘extract’ of the data.

If you have chosen a relative time window for your analysis, you might want to refresh the data in your workbook each week for example. To do so select the data source in the Data menu and choose the refresh extract option:


Note that if you have chosen an absolute (fixed) time window for you analysis refreshing the extract will just bring back the same data, as the time window won’t have changed. You can edit your connection to choose a new time window if required.

Consumption of API limits

For owned social analytics features, we do not set package limits on the API. All customers are subject to fair-usage limits, but as these are high limits for most use cases you shouldn’t encounter any issues.

Solving proxy issues

Since our Tableau Web Data Connector is a browser application, there are certain scenarios in which you can run into CORS issues.

This typically comes up when customers are trying to configure automatic refreshes in Tableau Server, fetching earned media exports, and using a proxy to fetch the data from the Meltwater API.

You would likely experience this by seeing a never-ending spinner in Tableau, when you are trying to load data using our WDC through a proxy.

Why does this happen?

When you use the connector to retrieve earned media exports, export data will be fetched from https://exports.meltwater.com/....

If you use a proxy service, as the connector is hosted at api.meltwater.com but is requesting data from the exports domain, this can cause CORS issues.

How to solve this?

To solve this problem, enable CORS support in your proxy by setting Access-Control-Allow-Origin header to allow requests from the connector’s domain.

Please refer to the official Tableau documentation for solving CORS issues.