Welcome to our new blog series on Social Intelligence Beyond Monitoring, from FACE MD Job Muscroft. In this series, Job will be showing how brands can get high-value insights from social media listening – first up, Brand Positioning.
There are now hundreds of social media monitoring tools on the market that allow you to quickly and easily mine thousands of conversations about brands and topics you are interested in learning about. In fact, as social listening has become an established part of brand health monitoring, most brands now subscribe to a platform and use key word search strategies to conduct basic monitoring around 2 main use cases:
- Measure how visible a brand is in comparison to its competitors.
- Track sentiment of customers likes and dislike about brand/products.
This type of monitoring is usually conducted by agencies on behalf of brands and feeds into the development of creative and comms strategies. This, in a world where digital and social advertising spend is now overtaking traditional spend, is crucial.
In this series of blogs I want to look at the emerging use cases for social intelligence which go beyond counting mentions of brands and quantifying consumer sentiment. I want to and talk about where the big value lies for companies who invest in building the capabilities of analysts and research teams to look at social data strategically – to go beyond saying what happened to work out why, and what to do about it.
Social Intelligence for Brand Positioning
A large US female haircare brand with a strong legacy in the market is facing the reality that consumer perception has changed quickly over the last 2 years. It’s is looking to strengthen its brand positioning and identify new opportunities to engage with women.
What we did
Our approach was informed by the fact that Haircare is a highly emotional category and generates high levels of conversation amongst women online. This social media discussion is highly visual who often share images within their networks in order to find the right solution for their hair.
- Started wide by listening to the whole category and identified a community of women driving the conversation around this product range and the most common articulated haircare needs
- Focused the next stage of the project on this active community by creating a social panel of women who we listened to for a month to give us insight into their lives beyond their care hair needs
- Aside from text analytics we spent time understanding the thousands of haircare images shared on Pinterest, Instagram, Tumblr and Twitter as an invaluable source of visual insight
- Workshop with client team to download insights and build positioning platforms together
Why this worked
The client stakeholder group found this approach to their challenge worked for them as it helped them to get closer to their consumers’ mindset than more traditional research groups or surveys. It additionally as it gave them strategic insights about both individual and group behaviour in the haircare market: it’s not just about one-to-one communication with your customer, but understanding how she shares with her friends.
- Identified and brought to life a community of women that the brand needs to tap into if they are to reignite an connection with today’s consumers in this category.
- Most importantly, it brough to to life the emotional struggles surrounding their ideals of beauty
- Showed the specific language and aesthetic imagery that constructs the bonds within this community that can feed directly into more authentic creative executions
- Gave insight into both individual and group behaviour in the haircare market: it’s not just about one-to-one communication with your customer, but understanding how she shares with her friends.
- Highlighted the opportunities for the brand to position itself to engage the widest possible audience without alienating sub-communities
In the next blog in this series I will be highlighting how we can use social intelligence to help innovate products.