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5 ways to monitor and improve your brand health on social media

By Michael Nutley | Writer for The Drum

June 8, 2022 | 6 min read

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Brand health is a measure of how consumers perceive and engage with your brand. So to find out how healthy – or otherwise – your brand is, you don’t need to look any further than social media, because someone, somewhere will be talking about it.

Brand health

Key trends in social media

“We think of social media as the world’s largest focus group,” says Mike Baglietto, global head of market insights at next-generation consumer and market intelligence platform NetBase Quid. “You don’t have to buy a research report, you don’t have to do a survey. People on social media share anything and everything, and they’re pretty unfiltered, so you can find out exactly how people feel about your brand, and your competitors, and even your market.”

There is, however, a crucial difference between social media and any other focus group, big or small. Once you’ve found out how people perceive your brand, only social media also allows you to change that perception.

Key trends in social media

Baglietto was one of the speakers taking part in a webinar – Consumer & market intelligence in 2022: what’s impacting your brand health? – produced by The Drum in partnership with NetBase Quid. In the session, Baglietto and his colleague Harvey Rañola, NetBase Quid’s global head of media intelligence, talked about:

  • the key trends in social media this year

  • the mass adoption of augmented reality

  • the growing importance of TikTok and Reddit

  • how brand managers can identify influencers and detractors

  • the need to create a baseline so you can track your brand’s health over time

Baglietto outlined the main metrics marketers should be using to benchmark the health of their brands.

“There’s the number of posts or mentions around my brand; how do consumers feel about it, my net sentiment score; how many people actually will see this, my net potential impressions. And then there’s the number of people who are creating those posts.

“Then we want to take a look at where your audience is talking about your brand, which social channels are the locations for those conversations. And we also want to look at the opportunities for your brand on those channels.”

One of Baglietto’s key points was that different channels attract different audiences. The TikTok audience, for example, skews more towards women; Reddit skews more towards men. So rather than creating “social media content” and pushing it out across all channels, marketers need to target their content by channel.

“Who follows your brand on Twitter may not be the same audience that follows your brand on TikTok or Instagram” he said. “So you want to really understand who that audience is to unlock more potential in revenue and retention.”

Don’t worry about the Kardashians

The other major topic for discussion was influencers, and in particular micro-influencers.

“Micro-influencers – the folks that have between 5,000 and 25,000 followers – create a lot of opportunities for your brand and have the biggest impact,” Baglietto explained. “They allow you to really engage with consumers in a very authentic way. It’s great to get someone like a Kardashian to tweet about your brand. But do consumers really take action as a result? Whereas if I’m an activewear company, I might want to look for yoga instructors or personal trainers who have a following. They’ll engage their audience, they’re authentic to the category, and authentic to my users.”

But as Rañola pointed out, authenticity cuts both ways. Talking about engaging with communities on Reddit, he stressed the need to find the balance between information and promotion.

“One of the things that Reddit is known for is how brutally honest people are and how easily they can sniff out something that is not authentic,” he said. “Something that brands have to be really careful about is toeing that line of being able to demonstrate value while at the same time being authentic. I know this from personal experience at a company I worked for previously, where we were a little bit too salesy and we got called out pretty quickly, and banned from the Subreddit we were promoting on.”

Baglietto ended with a series of tips for marketers looking to monitor and improve the health of their brand:

  • Baseline your performance with all your key audiences across all your key channels at least monthly

  • Know the content types that matter most for each segment on each channel

  • Find influencers who match your brand’s personality

  • Track the response to everything you and your team share, as well as what your influencers share, in real-time

  • Course-correct as necessary

To watch the whole webinar, Consumer & market intelligence in 2022: what’s impacting your brand health? click here.

Media Brand Strategy Influencer Marketing

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