Wrapping up social media for the best gift ever!


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My best gift ever was when, at 8, I finally received my own bike – not a hand-me-down from an older uncle, but a real man’s bike, a black and red space invaders bike with a big banana seat [find picture] – that I immediately took to the streets in a fit of intense glee.

Customer feedback is a gift, to quote the Chairman of our Steering Committee, which when turned into action should approximate that 8 year old’s satisfaction of finally getting a bike I could ride with pride. At our recent users conference, one of our sessions focused on the challenges and best practices in mining social media for actionable customer intelligence.

For the purposes of that presentation, we analyzed 128,000 comments about 6 major retailers over the 2009 holiday season. Our Social Media Analysis allowed us to remove the spam, advertisements, etc… and analyze the comments for a general understanding of the topics under discussion, competitor analysis and insight into the consumers. This analysis was only possible because of our advanced natural language processing engine, classification suite and sentiment analysis capabilities, as it took random conversations about video game consoles up to a level that would help the day-to-day activities of the brand managers for these retailers.

After harvesting the comments, organizing them for analysis and understanding the key sentiment, we began to compare the reactions of the social media world to the various promotions ran by the retailers. For example, Target ran a “Buy 2 Wii Games, Get 1 free” promotion and Walmart ran a “Buy a Wii Console, receive a $50 gift card” promotion.


Our analysis showed that Walmart’s promotion generated more conversation from social media participants.


In addition, reactions were generally more positive.


A possible conclusion is that the Walmart gift card promotion led to:

  • Higher volume of conversation
  • Conversation over longer periods of time
  • More positive sentiment than the neutral conversations around Target’s promotion

I know two things from our Social Media Analysis:

  1. Social Media needs to become part of your feedback ecosystem
  2. If I had that $50 gift card, I might just go looking for another Space Invaders bike. Unfortunately my bike was altered beyond recognition when, shortly after my 11th birthday, I spray-painted the thing silver and replaced its banana seat with a normal one in a desperate attempt to fit in with the older kids. 🙂

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Tony Lopresti
As Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Clarabridge, Tony is responsible for the integration of our clients' feedback into our product offerings, marketing activities and business development plans. Tony is an entrepreneurial executive with progressive experience in enterprise software sales, product management, marketing, strategy, and operations.


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