As marketers, we sometimes can get too caught up on the numbers and data. However, in social media marketing, while it is certainly important to analyze your data, it’s just as important to know what customers are talking about your brand and how your brand is perceived in the marketplace. In this world, where every brand is exposed on social media it is the overall brand sentiment that makes or breaks a business. A Social media sentiment goes beyond just ratings and reviews but also dives deeper into how your brand is perceived by your audience, what they say, and how they interact with your business. A Social Media Sentiment is the first step in increasing your overall brand Net Promoter Score (NPS).
Recently, we partnered with a client in the Events & Entertainment space and helped drive an increase in positive social media sentiment. With over 25K+ social media followers, sentiment was an important metric to track since word-of-mouth is critical when it comes to live events. In this article, we will walk you through why social media sentiment is important, how to measure it, and steps to take to improve it.
What is Social Media Sentiment?
According to Hootsuite “Social media sentiment is the attitude and feelings people have about your brand on social media. It adds context to all the @-mentions, comments, and shares.”
Social media sentiment dives deeper into your audience’s perception of your brand. The beginning steps of analyzing your social media sentiment is to first look at your tags, mentions, and comments on your social media platforms. The next step is tagging each interaction with a happy, neutral, or negative feeling that your audience experiences.
Sentiment does not improve in a vacuum but instead it is about bridging the offline and online user experience. If you aren’t providing a great offline experience at your event for your ticket holders, it will in turn affect your online experience. It all starts when your customer walks through the door: staff interaction, customer service, and the overall experience that people have while at your business. If they have a good experience, they will most likely go like your page, follow your updates, leave a good review, suggest your business to friends and family, and in turn be a happy customer both offline and online.
Tying Social Media Sentiment to Net Promoter Score (NPS)
A social media sentiment will tell you how many folks in your community like your brand and how many are not satisfied. You can take this information and then calculate the promoters (folks who give positive feedback) and the Detractors (folks who are not happy). And so this is how the NPS is calculated.
The Net Promoter Score is calculated as the difference between the percentage of Promoters and Detractors. For instance, if you have 25% Promoters (positive comments), 55% Passives (neutral comments) and 20% Detractors (negative comments), the NPS will be +5.
SurveyMonkey has a detailed NPS score primer that you can read here.
Why is Social Media Sentiment Important?
A big part of social media sentiment is monitoring your social media tags, mentions, and comments. In the case of Digital Sparx Marketing, we had a dedicated social media specialist almost always monitoring our client’s social platforms. This may be difficult for many businesses, so working as a team, splitting up monitoring, and having a defined target response time (in our case: 1 hour) is very important. It will likely be different for every business depending if it is a daily event or a one-time event.
Part of the process of staying on top of response time is responding to comments, liking posts, sharing users posts and thanking customers for their reviews. Let’s break down each platform to give you more details about how to keep your social media sentiment up.
Your exact strategy will depend on your business, social media traffic, and users that are following you. Facebook has a few important tactics you should be sure to follow.
- Response time: Facebook rates your response time to comments, questions, and private messages. Even if someone comments on a post, you should acknowledge it in some way, as quickly as possible. This will increase your response rate that is shown publicly on your business’s page. Leaving comments and interacting with users was key for our client. You want to be sure to give off a personality and tone that fits your brand. In our case, we focused on portraying our client as fun, hip, and appealing to the younger, creative crowd. We tried to use a more relaxed, laid back tone when responding to comments while also staying professional.
- Reviews: Facebook reviews and recommendations are also important sentiment numbers to be aware of. Often people turn to facebook to find top local businesses and the first thing they may look at is a business rating review. 5 stars is the goal, but at a minimum staying above a 4 is important so as to not fall behind your competitors. A few things to note, you should interact with your audience by thanking them for their reviews, responding promptly to all of them and carefully crafting responses to negative reviews. The last thing you want to do is respond negatively or aggressively to a bad review, this could seriously damage your brand image.
- How do you respond to a bad review? 1) Apologize for their bad experience, whether you find it valid or not. 2) See how you can turn the situation around. For instance, offering them a free ticket or discount for another visit. 3) Provide an email or phone number for them to reach out to find out more details and see how you can correct the problem. Try and fix the situation to the extent that it is possible. Make sure that you thoroughly explain, and appear genuinely apologetic because reviews are public and permanent.
Tools to Help Track Social Media Sentiment:
Social media sentiment is an important metric to analyze. There are many tools out there that can help you break down your sentiment. Most social media management tools have the ability to give you a breakdown of the number of happy, neutral, and negative toned interactions on social media. The screenshot below is an example from Hootsuite’s report.
Another useful tool to keep track of comments and reviews is the Facebook page manager app. This app will bring in your data from different platforms all in one spot. It will show you which comments and reviews have not been acknowledged and it will notify you with every message or comment your business page receives. Also, if you have multiple business pages, it allows you to connect all of them in one app. This came in handy as we worked on a client but also kept up our own business Facebook page.
When it comes to social media, there are many important metrics to measure. Social media sentiment is one of the most important. Identifying your sentiment can give you a good idea of your customers emotions and feelings toward your brand. Make sure to pay attention to the way that people see your brand.
Need help improving your social media sentiment? Reach out to Digital Sparx Marketing at firstname.lastname@example.org for questions or comments.