Being present on social media is a pretty essential move for most businesses these days. However, in order for it to be effective it is about more than just having a presence – you want to engage with customers in the right way and encourage them to interact with you.
Above and beyond this, analysing every element of your social media presence can give you some fascinating and very useful business data. If you are on social media and you aren’t participating in campaigns like social media listening and analysing as much data as possible, then you could be missing out on key information that really could help accelerate your business growth.
What Is Social Media Sentiment Analysis
Nowadays most businesses recognise the importance of brand awareness and business reputation. Monitoring on social media is a great tool to achieve this. Sentiment analysis gives you the tools you need to listen to what customers are saying about you and use this data to understand consumer perception of your brand – a great tool for knowing what you are doing well and what you might need to do differently.
Social media sentiment analysis isn’t anything new or groundbreaking; companies have been asking customers to fill in feedback forms, give their opinions and carry out market research for decades. It allows businesses to have an understanding of what customers are thinking and feeling about a company. Social media sentiment analysis is simply taking this need for data online and using social media platforms to help you gather this valuable information.
Sentiment Analysis Using Social Listening
Social listening allows you to listen to what your customers are saying about you, your competitors and your industry online. We already know that analysing this data in the right way can reap big rewards for your company.
Many companies have already set up social media monitoring dashboards so that they can check what is being said on social media and ensure that they reply effectively and in a timely manner. Social listening takes this one step further and gives companies even more data and insight into what is being talked about online.
Advantages Of Conducting Sentiment Analysis
Social listening sentiment analysis allows you to determine whether what is being talked about online in terms of your brand is positive, negative or neutral. Tracking this and analysing the average feeling of your customers gives you an idea as to whether business decisions you have made or products you have launched have changed this feeling in a positive way. This has several advantages:
Understanding Your Mentions
It is easy to concentrate purely on the interaction levels that your posts get – a natural intuition is if you get a sudden spike in mentions or follows you would assume this to be a positive thing. However, if the mentions are overwhelmingly negative this is certainly something to be aware of. Social media sentiment analysis allows you to understand what is being said and whether the change is a positive or a negative thing for your overall business.
Understating Your Competition
As well as looking at what your customers are saying about you, social listening allows you to see what is being said about your competition and throughout your chosen industry. This gives you a great understanding of your competition, what they are doing and what you can do to stay one step ahead of them.
Easy Access Market Research
Market research has always been a vital part of product launches and successful advertising campaigns, and there’s no reason for this to change. However, social listening and sentiment analysis allow you to launch these products or advertising campaigns and get an immediate feel for what the public response is – allowing you to act accordingly if necessary.
Identify Gaps in the Market
By understanding what your customers are feeling you get to identify any frustrations they feel about products being available or substandard. As a business that wants to expand this is great news – because it gives you insight into what you should be concentrating on in order to keep your customers happy and potential customers interested in your brand.
Methods Of Analysing Sentiment In Social Media
The great thing about social media is that it allows you to take from it whatever you feel would benefit your business. This means that analysing sentiment is something that can work for businesses of all sizes – including yours.
What you need to do is work out what data you think your business would benefit from and set about tracking this on social media so you can begin analysing. If you’re wondering how to do social media sentiment analysis, popular methods that work include:
Audience Insights – Having an understanding of what your customers are saying, what potential customers are feeling and the general sentiment across your social media channels. Monitoring replies to various post types and understanding whether this causes a negative or a positive reaction from your followers is a great way to see which post types work and which should possibly be avoided in the future.
Customer Service – Analysing why customers are contacting you directly and what they have to say about your products is a great way of understanding just how happy your customers are. Monitoring customer service interactions on social media is always a great idea because it allows you to speak to customers when they are unhappy and give you a chance to turn things around. Monitoring this deeper to see what they are feeling and what you can do to improve this is a great idea.
Consumer Trends – Understanding consumer trends and what people are talking about is a great way to ensure that your company stays part of the conversation, for all the right reasons. Consumer trends are a great way to see what potential customers would be interested in and whether there is a gap in the market for this, so it’s definitely something that you and your business want to be a part of.
Reporting On Social Media Sentiment Analysis
If you are going to start looking into sentiment analysis it is important to understand what you are looking for and what data is going to be important to your company. A sentiment analysis can be made up of all manner of headings and data, it is about putting something together that is right for your company and is going to be beneficial. Things to consider including on your report might include:
- Social media mentions
- Engagement numbers with social media posts
- Whether customer messages are positive or negative
- If complaints have been resolved and how
- How social media is performing
As you delve deeper into your own sentiment analysis or work with a company such as WatchMyCompetitor (WMC), you’ll start to get an idea of what data is useful to your company and you can tweak any reports you generate accordingly. It is essential that you track this data as you go, so you can have an understanding of any changes that have happened, and whether these have been as a direct result of any action the company has taken.
For example, if you have launched a new advertising campaign and your social media mentions increase then the chances are the two are related – and it is a great idea to have this data secured on a tracking report so you can see exactly what difference it makes. Not only that but tracking this and carrying out sentiment analysis allows you to see whether customers have received the advert in a positive way or whether it comes across as something much more negative. If opinions are negative then the company has the option to act quickly and do what they can to turn this around – which they wouldn’t have been able to do before the days of social listening sentiment analysis.
It really is a vital tool and something worth carrying out; just make sure you go about it in the right way so that you can access the data efficiently and as accurately as possible.
Can my business benefit from sentiment analysis?
In short, the answer is yes. Every business can benefit from understanding how their customers are feeling and the overall perception of their brand. Even if this is negative, it gives the company a starting point and some real-life data that they can work on in order to improve things.
Should I be social listening?
If your brand is being talked about online or you want an understanding of how your competitors are faring online then social listening could very well be beneficial to you. People assume that social media monitoring is about seeing what people are saying about their company directly, but social listening pieces together a much bigger picture.
What can I find out from social media sentiment analysis?
The truth is that you can find out pretty much anything you want, as long as you approach it in the right way and analyse the data correctly. Consumers spend large chunks of their day on social media, sharing their thoughts and feelings – so as a business it makes sense to tap into this.