What is sentiment analysis in social media?
Are your customers (and potential customers) talking positively about your brand on social media? You could do a quick scan of your comments, tagged posts, and other mentions to see what they are saying about you and what the general sentiment is, but that would take up quite a bit of time and likely wouldn’t get you the results you’d like.
Sentiment analysis is meant to help you understand how your brand is perceived; it’s an automated process that collects and analyzes information related to how people talk about your brand on social media and determines the emotional tone (positive, negative, or neutral) behind that message.
How does sentiment analysis work?
To conduct a sentiment analysis, social media monitoring tools use natural language processing (NLP) and machine learning (ML) to analyze and classify the sentiment expressed in social media posts and comments, and decipher if a message is positive, negative, or neutral.
How can sentiment analysis be used in social media monitoring?
Social media monitoring (also known as social listening) is the process of listening out for social media conversations relevant to your brand, and sentiment analysis can aid in forming a general idea of the emotions (positive, negative, or neutral) tied to your brand on social media.
Sentiment analysis can be used to cut through the noise to find the most important information, which makes it a key part of a social media monitoring strategy.
Below you can see an example from Mention of how sentiment analysis looks like within a social media monitoring tool. As you can see, sentiment analysis is shown through charts and graphs that benchmark your social sentiment.
What are the benefits of using sentiment analysis?
Most business owners and marketers will say that the most important thing to the success of your business is to listen to your customers – and we couldn’t agree more. Ultimately, sentiment analysis can help your business succeed by giving you the tools to listen in to what your customers are saying. But the benefits don’t stop there:
- Fine-tune your marketing strategy: By understanding customer sentiment, you can gain valuable insights (such as what type of content your audience enjoys and how they perceive your brand) that you can use to inform your social media marketing strategy, thus improving engagement and brand reputation.
- Builds community: Listening to your audience and taking the time to reply and engage with them helps you build connections and a loyal community; plus, it helps you stand apart from other businesses that aren’t as responsive.
- Shows you care: By listening in and replying to comments, you’re showing your followers (and customers) that you care, that you’re responsive, and that their feedback matters.
- Provide customer support: One study showed that social media is the second most popular channel for customers to communicate with a brand (and the first for Millennial customers).
- Prevent social media crises: If you’re listening in to your social media community regularly, you’ll be able to catch on to social media crises early on and, hopefully, prevent them from completely snowballing.
- Identify new opportunities: By actively listening in, you can identify gaps in your offering, gain inspiration for new content, or discover areas where you need to improve.
What is an example of sentiment analysis?
Sentiment analysis is often used within customer service teams. Since these teams work incredibly close with customers on social media, they hear from their most vocal users about what features or products need improvement. Sentiment analysis can help them analyze customer feedback, collect common complaints, and identify gaps in their product or service offerings.
An example of sentiment analysis can be found with Yewo, a social-impact jewelry company; they received a lot of customer complaints that the brass on their jewelry tarnished over time. Thanks to sentiment analysis, they decided to upgrade from brass to gold-plating, ultimately making their customers happy and improving the product.