“Really grinds my gears that Walmart doesn’t have their Halloween cookies out yet.” @KyraCavanaugh Twitter, 28 September 2014.
“Really grinds my gears that Walmart doesn’t have their Halloween cookies out yet.” @KyraCavanaugh Twitter, 28 September 2014.
Social listening assists companies in gathering insights about a particular brand or product through online conversation. They have essentially replaced focus groups as the key method in understanding the marketplace. But how can social listening specifically benefit the CPG industry?
The Consumer Packaged Goods industry exists in an ever-changing environment. Consumer needs are always changing. Chocolate and candy are popular during Halloween season, but not so much in January when people are starting new year resolution diets. Social media campaigns, offline promotions, pricing, innovations, and competition all factor into a consumer’s purchasing decision. This just scrapes the surface of what a CPG company needs to consider to ensure that their products are meeting the needs of consumers. Predicting consumer trends has become an art form that is impossible to thoroughly learn without the assistance of social listening companies.
Social media, eCommerce sites, forums, and blogs are just a few ways that consumers can voice their opinion about a product. With their brand’s reputation always on the line CPG companies constantly need to be monitoring what is being said about their products. Social listening companies like DataRank assist CPG companies by collecting comments about a brand or product, filtering out irrelevant conversation, and narrowing down the pool of data so that companies can quickly see how their brand/product is being received in online conversation. Companies are then able to take this knowledge and address negative sentiment, harness positive sentiment, or possibly create new products based on the information that they gained through data analysis.
There seems to be a common misconception that data can only be retrieved about big and popular brands. This is assumed because they are the brands that people talk most about on Twitter and Facebook. While popular brands like Coca-Cola, and Budweiser take a large share of social conversation, there is also a lot of conversation about household goods, and personal products. The key is finding where consumers like to talk about products online. Social media is not the only place consumers like discuss their product experience. ECommerce sites like Walmart.com and Amazon have thousands of reviews for products as common as toilet paper and bread. It’s true! Check out the number of reviews and ratings you can find for kitty litter products at Walmart.com.
Brand management is important, not just for determining if people like a product, but also for controlling negative sentiment when a company needs to change a product or introduce a new one.
We recently published a blog post about Nestle reducing the size of its popular Australian gummy, the Killer Python. Taking a sample of conversation from Twitter we were able to determine that 80% of comments disagreed with the resizing of the Killer Python. In an attempt to quell negative sentiment, Nestle took to social media, and responded to many tweets. By doing this they were able to stop misconceptions about the new product bearing the same price as the old product despite its quantity reduction. They also showed consumers they were listening to their complaints by responding to them directly through Twitter.
A business discovers through social listening that people were adding cinnamon spice to their brand of hot chocolate. They could use this information to come out with a new product of cinnamon spice hot chocolate to fulfill the needs of their established customer base. This may also drive sales from new customers who prefer spicy beverages. Increased conversation and engagement could occur during the fall season with the company pitching cinnamon spice hot chocolate to consumers who already love pumpkin spice.
- Can Track campaign performance.
- Discover potential product development from online conversation.
- Use deep listening to make informed marketing decisions.
- Develop an understanding of consumer needs.
- Build a relationship between consumer opinion and the product/brand.
- Be at the forefront of innovation in the CPG industry.
- Have a competitive edge in the market.
DataRank collects data from a variety of sources including eCommerce sites, forums, blogs, and social media. The data collected is then ranked by relevance, revealing the most useful comments that are then analyzed by our team. The insights we derive from the collected data are used by clients to understand current shopping trends, brand metrics, and consumer sentiment. Book a demo with us today.
Daylight savings will be coming to an end soon, which means time to finish up those summer DIY projects. Power tools are an important part of home renovation and improvement projects, and with eCommerce sites implementing reviews for their products DataRank was interested to hear what people say about drills. Black and Decker have built home improvement products since 1910 so we chose to analyze their drill brand in online conversation, to discover if there were any interesting trends in home improvement drills.
Using our social listening tool, we captured online conversation about Black and Decker drills from 10 October 2013 - 10 October 2014. We also compared the last 6 months to the previous 6 months to see if there was any change in conversation about the drills over a shorter period of time. What we found was a stable brand with surprising demographic statistics.
Drilling Deeper into Online Conversation
From the get-go we noticed that B & D drills are quite popular amongst drill owners. 85% of overall conversation was positive, with many favorable mentions for various Black and Decker drills. The feature that garnered the most mentions was the cordless drills, which took 21% of total conversation and had 81% positive sentiment. What made the cordless drill important to many users was the life of the battery:
The brand wasn’t without its issues, however, with 9.5% of total conversation generating negative sentiment about Black and Decker drill battery and charger malfunctions. Some reported an issue with the charger smoking or melting. Others complained about drill bits breaking. The conversation share for complaints was very small in comparison to the positive mentions it received. 3% of total conversation mentioned how a Black and Decker drill was worth the money they spent in purchasing it.
An interesting demographic statistic revealed that comments about Black and Decker drills were published by more females than males in the last 6 months. Check out the difference over the past 12 months below:
Big Data is so mainstream that it’s mentioned on TV
commercials, and most of us would agree that we have access to more data than
ever before. Yet a June 2014 study
concluded that 65% of U.S. executives rely on gut feelings for their decision
making, and a May
2014 global survey found that only 11% of North American execs surveyed agreed
that their companies rely strongly on data about customers for decision making.
This was true in spite of increasing spend on data, agreement that data is important, and a majority belief that data-driven decision-making is a good thing.
How can this happen?
· First, the people in charge of collecting and analyzing data often are not the people in charge of making the decisions. Decision makers think about issues and draw conclusions… and then attend a PowerPoint presentation or receive a memo summarizing data. The data would have to be pretty compelling to overcome that disadvantage. In fact, human nature is such that decision makers in this situation will tend to ignore data that doesn’t match the decision they’ve already made, while emphasizing the data that agrees with their preconceptions.
· Second, the data often isn’t that compelling. Data scientists and analysts may feel that the numbers speak for themselves. For many people, though, numbers are silent. Plenty of savvy business leaders find that their eyes slide right off the page when they try to look at spreadsheets or tables of data. Put those tables with eight bullet points of text on a Power Point slide and you might as well be showing a large gray square.
· Third, we all think we’re special. While a surprising number of executives describe themselves as not being very good at getting data or say that it is hard to get reliable numbers, they still tend to conclude that data which contradicts their intuitions just doesn’t apply. Social scientist Daniel Gilbert has spent years studying why people make bad decisions, and has determined that one of the main reasons is that we can see how actions have turned out for other people, but we don’t think it will happen to us. This explains a lot of teenage car accidents, but it also explains a lot of bad business calls.
If you’re in charge of presenting data, there are things you can do to counteract these issues.
· Get the information in early. If you can bring the data to the decision makers before they’ve already made up their minds, you’re more likely to sway them. Since a Business Week study found that executives tend to feel that it’s hard to get information or that it doesn’t reach them fast enough, you may find that decision makers in your company will be receptive to some proactive data sharing. At the very least, offer some preliminary information while you’re polishing up that final report.
· Present the story, not the numbers. Have the numbers ready to back up your story, of course, but start with the narrative. Use infographics or other graphic representations instead of tables. And remember the cardinal rules of the PowerPoint presentation: one point per slide, strong visuals, and minimal text. Your slides are there to support your presentation with clarifying images, not to make the presentation for you. At the very least, resist the temptation to put all your text on the slides and read them to your audience; that’s what handouts are for.
· Make the connection. If your data doesn’t resonate with your audience, they can easily dismiss it. If the decision maker loves to fish and you can find out how your data applies to fishermen, do it. A little shameless personalization can help get your audience’s attention and make it easier for them to accept the information you’re offering.
The bitter satisfaction of saying, “I told you so” when decision makers ignore the numbers is nothing compared to the sweetness of hearing, “You were right!” when your data helps your company make the right decisions. Presenting the information effectively can make the difference.
You wouldn’t take the caramel out of a Caramello Koala, or remove the hundreds and thousands (sprinkles) from a Freckle, but Allen’s Lollies, owned by Nestle, is doing the unimaginable - it’s cutting the Killer Python in half. The Australian lolly company stirred up a social media storm last Wednesday when they announced that their classic gummy is going to be decreased in size from 47g (1.65 oz) to 24g (0.84 oz).
Nestle made the move to half the Killer Python in an effort to help Australian gummy-lovers manage their health with smaller portions. The “treat size” Killer Python will hit Australian stores in late October with Nestle preparing a social media campaign to popularize the new product. Unfortunately for Nestle, their Twitter marketing hashtag #TreatSizePython has been used by Killer Python lovers to negatively express their opinion about the cut.
Using our Twitter Live Search function we analyzed Killer Python shrinkage reactions from the last 48 hours, tracking back to when news first broke. There were almost 2000 mentions for either #TreatSizePython or Killer Python, with a staggering 90% of comments expressing a negative opinion over the change.
@peteandcaz66 Lollies like our Killer Python are a treat food and are best to enjoy as a smaller portion- so you consume less Kilojoules.— Nestlé Consumer Care (@NestleCare) October 10, 2014
Every year, shortly after the commencement of the new soccer season, EA Games delivers their latest version of the FIFA video game. Sales have remained strong with FIFA 13 selling 14.5 million copies in its first year, and FIFA 14 remaining one of the top five games sold worldwide.
This week we take a look at FIFA 15, listening into the social conversation generated in the first two weeks since the game’s release (23 September 2014 - 7 October 2014), to see if FIFA 15 is faring as well as its predecessors on social media.
DataRank gathers data from a variety of sources, collecting a diverse set of comments for more accurate analysis. Using data gathered from social networks, eCommerce sites and forums we are able to create a fuller picture of the sentiment surrounding a client’s brand. To illustrate the diversity of conversation we gather, we compared the FIFA 15 conversation we found on Instagram to the data we gathered from Twitter.
3.6% of conversation was gathered from Instagram with an overwhelming 98% positive mentions for FIFA 15. An interesting culture difference emerged on Instagram, with 92% of Instagram shares mentioning FIFA 15 uploaded by Italian users. #finalmente (finally), #mio (mine), and #love were the most popular hashtags used to accompany Insta pictures featuring the FIFA 15 game. While it is not a revelation that Italians love soccer, it is useful for companies to know where conversation about their product is being shared online. Mentions of FIFA 15 from Italians on Twitter was virtually non-existent, despite the greatest share of FIFA 15 conversation coming from this social network. In the future if EA Games needs to discover what Italians think of their product they will know to look to Instagram to find feedback.
Instagram data also held a demographic surprise, with 30% of FIFA 15 pictures shared by females. This was a stark difference to Twitter demographics, which had only 13% of FIFA 15 conversation generated by females. Information like this is invaluable for a company whose products are usually purchased by males. Further research could be conducted to see what else female FIFA 15 players are saying about their product.
Twitter users were far more critical of FIFA 15 with 41% of all tweets consisting of negative mentions. Pricing, and game performance were issues brought up in Twitter conversation.
Mentions using the dollar ($) currency were more prominent than mentions using pounds (£) but mentions including currency were concurrent with an average 80% negative sentiment. This information reveals that FIFA 15 owners using Twitter were more displeased with the game’s price across several countries including the United States, Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom, than the 20% of people who positively mentioned the FIFA 15 price.
Of all negative comments 80% complained about performance issues. The most common problem was the servers, with gameplay disrupted due to slowness, game crashing, and inability to complete tasks like redeeming packs, and coins. Comments were most negative when the performance issues interfered with running the game.
30% of all Twitter comments mentioning FIFA 15 also mentioned Madden, with 57% trying to decide which game to purchase. Sentiment surrounding mentions of the two games was more positive for FIFA 15, with 50% of mentions contemplating purchasing both games, or stating a preference for the soccer game.
As great as Madden 15 is, Fifa 15 is twice as good...Fifa never disappoints.— Patrick Carabin (@1red1body) September 24, 2014
Living Up to the Hype
It’s still early days for FIFA 15, but it appears that while people are excited to purchase the game, server issues are holding the game back from receiving better reviews in online conversation. Pricing complaints will likely subside in the holiday season as retailers offer discounts or packages to go along with with consoles.
Using our analysis, we project that the reception of FIFA 15 in the future will improve as EA Games resolves its server issues, and ensures that packs and coin transactions go smoothly.
Fall is already upon us, but while the hot weather lingers, DataRank is taking the opportunity to look back on the summer of 2014, and the nail polish trends that captured online conversation.
Using a sample of comments collected between 1 May 2014 and 31 August 2014, we pitted top nail polish brands OPI and Essie against each other to see what consumers had to say about their summer nail polish offerings, with a keen interest in color, price and shopper experience.
Share of voice is an important factor in determining the impression a brand has made on consumers. OPI had the greatest overall share of voice with almost 45,000 mentions and a total positive sentiment of 83%. Comparatively, Essie’s total share of voice was just over 35,000 with only 78% positive sentiment. These numbers reveal that people who use OPI nail polish are not only more vocal about their OPI experiences in online conversation, but also generally positive about the brand.
Demographics differed greatly between the brands. 40% of total OPI conversation was generated by the 35-44 year old age group while 45% of Essie‘s brand mentions came from within the 25-34 age group. It appeared that Essie appealed more to a younger demographic than OPI.An interesting data point emerges when comparing the 18-24 and 25-34 age groups. 20% of OPI mentions came from 18-24 year olds; 6% more than Essie for the same age group. While only 10% of OPI conversation was generated by the 25-34 age group, Essie’s strongest demographic for online mentions. It appears that OPI is seeing a surge of popularity amongst teens and early 20 year olds that have yet to reach the 25-34 age group.
Found this Essie pink/watermelon color that's really cute. Brighter than I normally wear, but it's summer.— Meter Maid (@ritabook11) July 15, 2014
PriceWhile Essie may have a wider range of preferred colors, OPI was more competitive in price. 35% of Essie nail polish price mentions were negative, with 11% of comments labeling the product “expensive”. Comparatively OPI had 88% positive mentions for the price of their nail polish during the 2014 summer season.
A summer nail polish collection can be difficult to obtain if the experience in purchasing the nail polish isn’t enjoyable or the product fails to meet buyer expectations. Analyzing comments about summer experience by nail polish shoppers, DataRank learned that people purchasing OPI nail polish were more satisfied than those who bought Essie nail polish. OPI captured 83% positive mentions for shopper experience, while Essie garnered 76% positive mentions. Many negative Essie nail polish mentions focused on the polish being too thin and requiring multiple applications to get adequate color and coverage. While OPI did not acquire as many negative responses, it was not exempt from negative sentiment, with some mentioning their dislike for the OPI polish texture.
The Brand of the Summer
Both OPI and Essie performed well in all categories under analysis. But with a larger share of voice, overall higher positive sentiment, competitive pricing, and positive shopper experience, OPI performed slightly better than Essie in summer nail polish online conversation.
Since the release of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus on 19 September, questions surrounding its durability have surfaced in online conversation. Unlike previous post-release iPhone issues (yellow iPhone 5 screen) the iPhone 6 Plus’s newfound flexibility is a phone accessory marketing dream. Traditionally, iPhone users have fallen within one of two camps: putting a case on it or keeping the iPhone in its true naked form and hoping that they never drop it. But news that the iPhone 6 Plus can be bent out of shape has caused a flurry of conversation on Twitter about whether the iPhone 6 Plus needs a case.
To understand the effect that the iPhone 6 Plus phone bending has had upon iPhone users, DataRank analyzed conversation on Twitter from 26 August 2014 to 24 September 2014. We took a sample of comments from Twitter to evaluate sentiment for iPhone 6 phone cases.
The announcement of the new iPhones on 9 September resulted in iPhone case mentions jumping 43% from the previous day. Since that day there has been a steady increase in conversation about iPhone cases, but mentions peaked on 21 September with over 24,000 tweets mentioning an iPhone case. The peak coincides with the first social media reactions to news of the iPhone 6 Plus’ bending ability. However, of those who mentioned an iPhone 6 case in the past 14 days, only 25% of tweets talked about needing a case to protect their phone from bending.
Hey @HabsGirlSWO the iPhone 6 and 6 plus bend easy in your pocket please get a case if you bought one of them— Justin Ramsden (@jramsden013) September 24, 2014
With these statistics we began to question just how many people get a phone case to protect their iPhone from damage, and how many purchase cases for decorative purposes. DataRank’s distributed crawler system collected 17,000 comments mentioning iPhone cases from 24 March 2014 to 24 September 2014. We collect data from a variety of sources including eCommerce sites, forums, blogs, and social media.
Battle of the Brands
When it comes to iPhone case brands the choice can be endless, with many companies vying to attract iPhone owners for various case features: protection, beauty, battery life and wallet/phone combo. We searched for the top brands and within the past 6 months, OtterBox iPhone cases were by far the most popular, garnering 22% of overall conversation. The next most popular brands were Speck, Mophie and LifeProof, who made up 5% of overall conversation.
76% of OtterBox case mentions were positive, with conversation evenly spread between the 18 - 44 year old age group. This suggests that iPhone owners of all ages are interested in protecting their phone from cracks, scrapes and scratches over aesthetic appeal when they purchase a case.
Traditional colors also appear to hold the greatest share in iPhone case conversation, with black cases collecting a 23% share of voice and white closely following with 17%. Of those who mentioned black iPhone cases, 38% also named OtterBox. From this data we have found that traditional protective cases are the most popular within online conversation.
iPhone owners appear to be very vocal about the price of their phone case, with 29% of total phone case conversation mentioning how much their iPhone case cost them.
The case I want for my phone is $80 situating this iPhone will be the death of my account everything's so expensive!— Ashley Jean Seaton (@Ashleey_Jeean) September 22, 2014
Females appear to be most critical about the price of iPhone cases, with 71% of females who mentioned price also stating how expensive iPhone cases are.
Even if you don’t regularly use social media outlets like Twitter or Facebook you will have likely heard that Scotland is in the midst of voting for or against independence from the United Kingdom.
We have seen political campaigns featured on social media sites in Barack Obama’s campaign for presidency in 2008 and then again in 2012. You can even buy a book that teaches you how to win elections using social media. The influence social media sites have on the public’s opinion is indisputable, but can Twitter really predict the outcome of Scotland’s referendum? Or any political campaign for that matter?
Currently Twitter has #Scotland and #indyref (independence referendum) trending in conversation. #VoteYesScotland and #ScotlandDecides are a couple of others featuring in tweets.
While a more conclusive analysis will be required after all of the data has been collected, we took a sample of data from over 30 million tweets collected in the past month mentioning the hashtags #Scotland, #indyref, as well as #VoteYesScotland, and analyzed social conversation about the Scottish referendum. The result was very decisive.
Our preliminary analysis shows that there is overwhelming support for Scottish independence with roughly 80% of Twitter comments using the hashtag #indyref being in favor an independent Scotland.
Since polls opened in Scotland, mentions of #indyref on Twitter jumped by 51% from approximately 250,000 to over 380,000 mentions. This was a consistent result over other topical trending hashtags like #Scotland, which received 60% more mentions on 17 September than the previous day. Today the #VoteYesScotland hashtag rose 367% from around 2,500 mentions yesterday to over 11,990 at last count.So has conversation on Twitter predicted the independence of Scotland? If vocal social media users have any sway, they have, but as with any election we will have to wait until they tally the votes to see how influential Twitter users are in predicting the result.
Since the day Sam Walton opened the doors to the first store,
Walmart has been known for its low prices and substantial savings. However, it
doesn’t take getting stuck behind an extreme-couponer in the checkout aisle to
know that coupons and price-matching can be as time-consuming and annoying as getting
stuck in traffic or having to go to the DMV.
Luckily, those days are gone thanks to Walmart’s new Savings Catcher app. With one quick download, customers can scan their receipts through their smartphones in order to receive price match savings from competing retailers. The app can also be used to track savings, refill prescriptions, and make shopping lists which then tell customers where to find specific items within the store.
To understand how the new Savings Catcher app is perceived by Walmart consumers, DataRank analyzed conversation through the period of August 1 2014-August 27 2014. (Walmart launched the Savings Catcher nationwide on Monday, August 4th). Then, conversation specifically about the app was isolated and evaluated in order to gain insight into its success in the marketplace.
Stepping up the Savings Game
Conversation around the app has made quite a splash on social media, with many customers mentioning it in their various social media platforms during the past month. These comments have been overwhelmingly positive, and people seem to see the app as the future of savings and an impressive new way for people to save money. In fact, 25% of customers mention the amount of money that they saved with the app on their last receipt.
So get downloading!