Top 5 Reasons Social Media Sentiment Should be Your Focus

CKettmann
Courtney Kettmann Community Manager, Viralheat

Posted on August 1st 2012

Top 5 Reasons Social Media Sentiment Should be Your Focus

There’s been a long standing debate on what social media metrics matter the most and how we should be tracking them.

Since the inception of Facebook Fan Pages and company Twitter accounts, success was initially defined by the number of followers or fans a company had on their accounts. So many of us who manage social media accounts, started tracking and strategizing around this metric.  But focusing just on volume seemed somewhat flawed. Of course large brands will have a large following; these brands are recognizable and reliable so it’s difficult to say the number of followers directly indicates the success of their social media presence.

Since strictly measuring the number of followers may not be as important as originally thought, the measurement quickly grew to include the number of actively engaged followers on a page. These being the followers posting on your page, commenting on your posts, and participating in any activity the company utilizes on the page. This is certainly a better way to measure social media presence but there’s still some inconsistencies surrounding this. While engagement is essential to a thriving community, it doesn’t tell the whole story of what is happening on or around your company’s social media presence.

Here is where social media sentiment comes in, sentiment is important and
should be a main focus when evaluating your company’s social media presence and strategy. These 5 reasons can give you insight on why sentiment is so powerful and why you should be tracking it.


1. Sentiment Can Help You to Understand Your Audience

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Using sentiment to understand your audience can be incredibly eye opening. Are you actually targeting and engaging with the correct demographic? Who are the people mentioning you positively and which ones are mentioning you negatively? By tracking the sentiment on mentions of your brand, you may find opportunities in areas you hadn’t considered before. 


2. Learn from Past Successes
Did you recently launch a social media campaign with great success? Find out why people liked this particular campaign by reviewing what they said
about it over social media. This sentiment can help to identify what characteristics of a campaign are a home-run with your audience.

3. Learn from Past Failures
Using sentiment analysis to learn from past failures is a must. People reach out to social media when they have a problem or grip. This information should be harnessed to understand the reasons your customer base did not enjoy a product release, campaign, or design change and then used to your benefit in the future.

4. Compare Yourself to Others in the Market
If you have taken the step to start tracking your own sentiment, don’t stop there. While tracking sentiment about one topic or brand is great it’s beneficial to track competitors and competing products to see how yours fare in the marketplace. Account management and engagement products, Viralheat for one, can help you do that and they make it easy to compare sentiment and view sentiment trends on one or many topics.

5. Work to Improve your Sentiment
It’s difficult to know you have a problem without tracking it first. Once you have started to track your online sentiment you can view how you’re trending and decide if you need to work to improve your sentiment.

CKettmann

Courtney Kettmann

Community Manager, Viralheat

Courtney is the Community Manager at Viralheat - a social media analytics company based in the San Francisco Bay Area. She loves staying up to date with news, current events, tech and social media stories, and Bay Area sports. Find her on the web @courtkett.

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Comments

Marie Rose
Posted on August 1st 2012 at 10:25AM

These are great points as to why looking at sentiment is so important. By analyzing sentiment data and getting a deeper knowledge of customer opinions, companies are able to improve their products and services. If a company listens to what customers have responded negatively and positively to, and models their business around it, customer satisfaction will improve. Conversocial has a feature inside the enterprise account that allows customer service team members to manually mark social media messages as positive, negative or neutral, and then to analyze this data to see where all the sentiment was directed. It's definitely important to focus on social media sentiment to improve a business. Customer satisfaction is key!

CKettmann
Posted on August 1st 2012 at 12:30PM

Thanks Marie Rose for your points! It's interesting how we tend to focus so much on the other metrics when they aren't really telling us anything. Sentiment can show companies their wins and losses pretty easily, then that information can be used for their benefit. Viralheat assigns sentiment automatically to each social media mention but also has the option to assign different sentiment - postive, negative, neutral. You're definitely right, customer satisfaction is key and harnassing their feedback is the best way to improve their experience.