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Modeling your strategy after a brand with the type of success you want is smart. What might that entail in 2018? The NetBase 2018 Global Love List Best Practices Guide shares the key strategies the world’s most-loved brands use to stay on top.

Give Your Audience What They Want

The whole point of social media is to connect with other people who share your interests – and brands aren’t exempt from this. The best way to leverage social media is to find insights that tell you what your audience wants, so you can serve it up. Here’s how:

1. Focus your analysis to specific sub-themes within the category; identify a key question to answer.

You don’t want to be too broad with your analysis. Specifics are everything when it comes to delighting consumers. Specifics make things more personal.

We looked at Nikon (Technology category) because they moved up quite a few spots on our 2018 Global Love List, compared to our previous report. With the goal of connecting to more than casual photographers, what trends could they focus on?

Sentiment analysis of this audience highlighted their main concerns were picture quality – where DSLR cameras got a lot of love – and learning/education. Photography enthusiasts want to get the most out of their cameras, but don’t always feel they know how.

2. Remove unwanted conversation by filtering only to personal narratives and original posts— this will make sure unique insights are not drowned out by popular posts.

A common barrier to social analytics for many brands is the idea there’s too much information to effectively sort. State-of-the-art social analytics tools do this work for you, of course, letting you limit your analytics to the information that matters. In a case like this, look for first-person stories and original posts for a true measure of the organic conversation.

3. When analyzing popular posts, look for themes about types of content that drive the most engagement.

Once you have an idea of what’s being said, you can identify which of those posts are popular, and why. Doing this led Nikon to create mobile-friendly sites of how-to guides and how-we-made-it videos.

Along with a contest to win various cameras, Nikon succeeded on a number of fronts:

  • 16% increase in sales
  • 12,500 competition entries, i.e., connections to photographers shooting beautiful images
  • 6X number of engagements in Q1 2018 v. Q3 2017
  • Improved sentiment related to learning from 60% to 80% in Q1 2018 v. Q3 2017

Segment and Conquer

Giving your audience what it wants often means recognizing they don’t all want the same thing. This is why segmenting is so important.

Here’s how Kohl’s used this tactic for a successful Oscars campaign:

1. Identify you target audience and set campaign strategy—the best social listening content is informed with clear research direction.

Looking at Kohl’s target audience of Millennial Moms, we learned the Oscars was the most talked about awards show for this segment – making it a smart sponsorship choice for the retail brand.

Additionally, comparing to the general population, we saw Millennial Moms were 3-4X more likely to talk about the show, individual awards, and movies. Great info.

2. Use social listening to understand the emotional drivers of that audience and tailor content accordingly—mix quantitative (what are they talking about the most) with qualitative (how are they expressing themselves).

What about the rest of Kohl’s female audience? Sentiment analysis shows us the most-loved topics include “family days,” having kids help around the house, and philanthropy beyond the home.

3. Measure effectiveness using audience penetration (demographics) and shareability (engagements).

With these insights in hand, Kohl’s focused their Academy Awards campaign around emotional connections and gratitude within families, using the hashtag #AlltheGoodStuff to encourage engagement.

The success of the campaign carried over, bringing in user generated content throughout the year, and one viral video:

Where to Start

Before you can delve into trend and audience analytics, it can be helpful to know where your category stands – or your brand within your category.

Our Top Loved Global Brands 2018 infographic illustrates the top 10 global brands, as well as industries (by percentage) across the globe. Check it out!

For the full list of brands, click the infographic to access the complete Global Love List 2018.

As for more best practices – like how to measure campaigns and find influencers – read all about them in the full NetBase 2018 Global Love List Best Practices Guide, with examples from Ikea and Nissan, respectively.

There’s no need to wonder how other brands get things done – learn from their best practices and you’ll give them a run for their money!

To see how our social analytics tools power these best practices and more, reach out!

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