As a brand, or Influencer, it’s incredibly important to plan out your social marketing strategy. Even just a few years back, brands were able to get away with little to no planning of an overall social strategy and still able to make some headway, albeit, not as much as those brands that did plan.
However, today’s social landscape is changing, and social marketing is growing. To capitalize on the total opportunity here, your plan has to combine quality content, the use of Influencers, budgets allocated for social advertising, proper targeting based on demographics and psychographics, and the use of sentiment analysis tools to measure your performance for optimization.
What is Social Sentiment
Sentiment represents a feeling, emotion, attitude or opinion. On social, the sentiment of a post is the tone or emotion conveyed in a brand mention. Sentiment can be either positive, negative or neutral. As your brand’s social grows, or especially if you are brand with a large following, keeping track of these numbers becomes increasingly more difficult – and sometimes number can be misleading. This is where tools are most important.
Quick Huddle Up on Social Measurement Terms
Here are the marketing measurements we focused the most on understanding and fine-tuning:
- Reach – is the total number of users who actually viewed your content. In theory there is no double counting here.
- Impressions – differ from Reach in that Impressions refer to the count of how many times your content was displayed to users. This metric differs from reach, which only measures the number of people that have viewed your content. Impressions are not unique to one user, which means the same piece of content can be displayed to the same user multiple times.
- Engagement – refers to people interacting with your brand’s content in the form of a like, comment, share, or re-posts. This is a level up from an Impressions because it clearly shows interest.
- Conversion – is the point at which a recipient of your marketing message performs a desired action. This can be an online purchase, calling your business, opening an email, filling out a registration or visiting your website.
- Advocacy – to us this is the ultimate metric. It’s not a commonly measured marketing stat but should be. We define advocacy as creating “Lifetime Customers”. Customers that are not only brand loyal, but brand advocates as well.
We use Sentiment Analysis in several ways. Some more on the micro-level, like individual social post sentiment or current trending topics; as well as, more macro-level indicators, like a brands overall reputation or competitive research. Here are the most common ones we use:
Social Media Engagement
Some of the social sentiment tools listed below will show post level sentiment. This is also referred to as social listening. They run algorithms based on keywords and other quantifying elements to rate the individual post. I use this to judge the success of the post, to look out for negative sentiment to address, and to historically look back and what performed best to template against for new postings.
These tools will also allow you to aggregate the sentiment up to a brand level. This is important to not only see what the current sentiment (reputation) is, but how that sentiment is trending. Ideally, the sentiment is positive and trending that way, but in the event of a negative shift, it creates the opportunity for you to MUCH quicker begin the shift back to positivity, rather than wait until it becomes obvious. You can also use this to measure the sentiment of campaigns, product or service launches, or events. In all these cases, make sure you are uniquely identifying the #campaign, #event, etc. with hashtags or the similar so that you can drill into just that for isolated research.
As with your own brand, you can perform this sentiment research on other brands to gain an advantage, keep the lead, or double down efforts. You can also use this to help with the timing of your marketing initiatives. In highly competitive or commoditized markets, this can be useful, but generally, we do not focus much on this measure.
Many sentiment tools will allow you to enter a person, place or thing to measure sentiment and see how that particular topic is trending (like Google Trends). This helps you better understand social awareness, topics that are currently in “favor”, what is trending well, and what you want to avoid at all costs.
One point to mention, a very important one, your brand should always stay true;
do not compromise your brand’s purpose or passion for what might be trending
in the moment if it goes against what your brand stands for.
As an example, if Game of Thrones is trending high, you might want to use “Winter is Coming” for your online apparel retailer campaign in October to leverage current popularity.
Social Media Sentiment Tools
There are dozens of social sentiment tools in the marketplace. Most offer either free, or trial-basis versions of the platform with limited features. Our approach is to try the tools out before making the investment because some are better at certain features than others. In some cases, you may want to leverage more than one. Here is a list (in alphabetical order) of the Sentiment Analysis tools to start your review process. We recommend reaching out to us for help with your Social Media Management – enjoy the journey!
- Critical Mention
- Hootsuite Insights
- HubSpot’s Service Hub
- Social Mention
- Social Searcher
- Talkwalker’s Quick Search
Contact Us For Help Social Media & Sentiment Analysis
Our team can help your brand with all aspects of your social media management and sentiment analysis. We would love to hear from you; contact us to setup a working session to discuss your brand’s needs.