Getting the full picture: Understanding the link between online and offline brand chatter
From a marketer’s perspective, word-of-mouth is how the positive (or negative) views of brands are spread by consumer conversation, through public, social channels or through one-on-one forums such as face-to-face conversations. The rise of social media has led to easier measurement of the channel, but private channels are still a major but less trackable influence.
For a comprehensive view, brands need to measure the full conversation both on and offline, its volume, sentiment, who it is shared with and how influential the speaker is. From this we can create the TotalSocial® score – combining online conversations, including public posts and shares on social media and blogs, with consumer surveys to understand how people talk about brands in their daily lives – and measure and benchmark performance over time.
The message of word-of-mouth depends on the platform
Cosmetics brand Lush hit the headlines earlier this year when it decided to close its UK social media accounts. The brand redirected customers to its website, email and phone lines for one-to-one conversations, increasing its emphasis on engaging consumers directly online.
Lush’s decision suggests that some brands are beginning to question the power of social media to influence consumer opinions and purchase decisions. Many marketing and advertising teams still consider going viral as the pinnacle of achievement, with success measured in thousands of likes, mentions and re-shared posts. But just how much does trending online matter from a business perspective?
Read the full WARC Exclusive article, here.
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Want a better understanding of the online and offline conversations around your brand? Are you a journalist who wants to use real data to measure the brands you’re reporting on? Are you a company who wants to gain further insights into your brand's marketing strategies to develop effective campaigns to reach your audiences?