Brand love and the social consumer



Measuring brand love is a sophisticated romance between art and science, and while the technology involved has a lot of moving parts, the premise boils down to one simple fact: people describe how they feel about this or that, including brands, and these descriptions can be coded, aggregated, and analyzed to measure sentiment.

Before social media, these descriptions were shared directly among family, friends, co-workers, and neighbors. If I own a restaurant, for example, I might stroll around chatting with customers, asking how they are enjoying their meal. Outside of the establishment, I might run into my third cousin at the grocery store and she might say “I just had a great lunch at XYZ Café.” I don’t need complicated software to recognize the word ‘great’ and infer that she enjoyed her experience at XYZ. If I hear much the same thing from others in my circle, I have my own home-made sentiment analysis — people I know like XYZ Café. As a diner, it’s nice to have the recommendation. But if I’m the owner at XYZ, I have no way of knowing when my customers are sharing the love (or the dissatisfaction).

Since the advent of social media, every one of my customers could be recommending (or dissing) my café, and not just to a neighbor, but potentially to an unlimited number of total strangers. Measuring sentiment today, therefore, involves computer recognition of descriptive words and phrases, both positive and negative, associated with specific brands. The process can be called ‘sentiment extraction’ and requires a database of thousands of possible positive, negative, and neutral words and phrases used in association with a brand. That’s a lot of “signal to noise” for restaurateurs to understand and manage.

At DigitalCoCo, we separate out all the noise so you can manage your brand according to your customers’ needs and expectations.

A quick look at how we do it

Everything starts with our Facebook Top 100 Restaurant Brandsdatabase, which tracks the approximately 187 million consumer restaurant brand “Likes” on Facebook. Many restaurant consumers “Like” more than one restaurant brand, and we can identify the 127 million unique individual consumers who generate these total Likes. That’s more than half — 56% to be exact — of the total U.S. adult population! But this remarkable density of coverage isn’t the end of the story, because we drill down into that density to identify the more than 34 million individuals who are super influencers among restaurant customers with our companion social analytics platform, Social Insights. We built this tool to serve in part as a trend prediction engine, based on advocate trends and the massive index of industry terms we’ve collected over more than 20 years of experience in the restaurant business. Social Insights is the most robust restaurant monitor in use today, measuring the daily interactions of more than 34 million super influencer consumers with 3,400 restaurant brands across 160,000 brand locations.

Understanding what this 127 million U.S. consumers are choosing when they eat out — and why is the future of how the restaurant business will conduct predictive analysis from social. Within this group, we can tap into the 34 million super influencers whose active engagement with restaurant brands is priceless and quite possible the future of how restaurants will begin to break away from their competitors.

Hopelessly Devoted to You: Best loved brands

Our Q1 data show the restaurant brands consumers love most. We track more than 3,400 restaurant entities and these are the top dogs in the first quarter of 2012.

1. Starbucks leads the pack with a soaring Consumer Sentiment (CS) score of 72. The coffee-and-community giant’s score puts Starbucks in the pre-eminent consumer sentiment position among fast-casual brands. With 2.3 million Twitter followers and nearly 30 million Facebook Likes, Starbucks ranks first across social media scores.

2. Red Mango is a close second with 69.8 on the CS scale. The top-shelf frozen yogurt and smoothie purveyor is ranked third on the overall Restaurant Social Media Index (RSMI). Only 5 years old, Red Mango embraced social media early on, and has gathered 525,000 Facebook Likes and 51,333 Twitter followers.

3. Peets comes in third with a score of 62.7 in Q1. Started in 1966 in Berkeley Calif., Peets Coffee and Tea ranks ninth on the overall RSMI, with 13,000 Twitter followers and 139,000 Facebook Likes.

4. The number four spot is held by Bonefish Grill, a St. Petersburg, Fla., eatery whose mission is to “laugh more and worry less”. Bonefish Grill scored 60.9 on the Consumer Sentiment scale, and ranks 18th on the RSMI. Bonefish started tweeting in 2009 and has gained 8,870 followers. It has 164,321 Facebook Likes.

5. Buffalo Wild Wings is fifth in Consumer Sentiment, and ranks 10th on the Twitter scale, with more than 88,000 followers and a 46.42% growth rate in Q1. These wild wing kings also rank sixth on the Facebook scale, with 7,085,079 Likes, and are eighth on the RSM Index.

6. At 60.1, Boudin Sourdough Bakery and Café is the sixth highest-ranking brand for Consumer Sentiment. Boudin is 52nd on the RSMI Top 100 list, and has 20,546 Facebook Likes. The creator of the original San Francisco Sourdough French Bread has been tweeting since 2009 and has 4,065 followers.

7. Wendy’s is firing on all social media cylinders: number seven in Consumer Sentiment (58.9), 13th on the Twitter ranking (66,654 followers), 21st on the Facebook scale (2,202,595 Likes in Q1), and second overall on the RSMI.

8. Noodles & Company comes in eighth, just a hair behind Wendy’s, with a Consumer Sentiment score of 58.8. The recipient of a number of business and industry awards, Noodles has 4,489 Twitter followers and 129,135 Facebook Likes. It is 36th on the RSMI index.

9. Like Starbucks, Buffalo Wild Wings, and Wendy’s, ninth-place Chick-fil-A has enviable scores across the top social media measures: The ‘Eat Mor Chikin’ place scores 58.2 on Consumer Sentiment, seventh on Twitter, ninth on Facebook, and fifth overall on the RSMI.

Update on Sentiment Data for Chick-fil-A on July 29, 2012 — Consumer sentiment has dropped significantly from a top score of 58.2 in overall sentiment to 28.7, one of the lowest scores in all of the Restaurant Social Media Index. This update would drop Chick-fil-A from a top five ranking in the RSMI to out of the Top 25.

10. Rounding out the top ten most loved restaurant brands, Texas Roadhouse scores a 55.3 on Consumer Sentiment. Texas Roadhouse has nearly 4,000 Twitter followers, 1,482,535 Facebook Likes, and is ranked 79th on the RSMI Top 100.




6 tips for writing irresistible content for your target audience

Whether you’re trying to grab attention to your newspaper, e-mail or blog post, one constant has remained: Content is king. You can write the greatest headline in the world, but if the rest of the content doesn’t deliver, captivate readers or mesh with the target demographic, you’ll quickly lose interest. The secret to creating and maintaining buzz for your content is to write content your audience wants to read. That sounds simple, but knowing your audience — and what it wants — is anything but easy.

First, you need to identify your audience. There are several methods to identify your audience, such as determining keywords that are bringing users to your website, creating user personae and more. Once you’ve identified your audience, you should create content that speaks to each user persona. Do not stray from this concept, because you will lose readers or followers. Readers are finicky at the beginning of any article or post. If you don’t capture their attention with the title, the remainder of the content might as well be in a language they don’t understand.

For example, let’s say you operate a blog about the exam for certified public accounts. Who is your audience? There are a few user personae we can identify without doing much detailed analysis. You can easily create personae for your audience in the same manner.

  • Students: those in their early 20s who are working on an accounting bachelor’s or master’s degree, with the intent of taking the CPA exam eventually.
  • Entry-level professionals: early- to mid-20s professionals working full time at a public accounting firm, after attaining a bachelor’s or master’s degree. This group is most likely to be actively involved in accounting practices or preparing to become a CPA.
  • Career changers: adults looking to change careers or re-enter the workforce.
  • Educators: accounting professors who might need to discuss CPA exam content with their students.
  • Professionals: licensed CPAs who are concerned about the future of the profession.

Let’s say we want to target entry-level professionals, because this is likely the largest of the five personae we have identified. Many of these individuals have probably taken entry-level jobs as an accountant but have not yet sat for the CPA exam. One of the greater stresses about this exam is finding out one’s score for each section. Though the exam is largely computerized, it can take a few months for scores to be reported to the appropriate governing body. So “CPA exam score release” is a hot topic and sure to draw attention from entry-level professionals because this demographic would be interested in knowing exam scores.

This would be a perfect theme or title to create your content around. When reading this blog for the first time, readers will immediately be locked in because the content pertains to their situation — not their past, not their future, but what they are actively involved in at the moment. Most readers and discussion groups talk about what’s happening now. What’s buzzing? By focusing your title and content on “the now” of your target audience, you have a much better chance of each reader reading your article or post from beginning to end, which is the goal of any writer.

When selecting a topic, there are a few tips to keep in mind.

  • Pick one that relates to at least one of your user personae. This drives at least one group of users to your content and is sure to relate to them.
  • Topics should be useful or answer a question. This encourages social sharing, allowing your content to reach beyond its page.
  • Pick a controversial or trendy topic. Readers usually show initial interest in current topics and trends compared with those of the past. That is, unless you are comparing a “now” topic with a past topic.
  • Limit the sales and marketing aspect of your content. If you’re only trying to sell a product or service, you will probably fail. No one likes to feel as though he or she has been sold, but everyone likes to buy.
  • Analyze solutions that have worked for others, and share them, because one can never have too many solutions. Solutions are exactly the type of content or discussion that goes viral.
  • Find out your user personae’s questions. Sites such as Yahoo! Answers and Quora can be a gold mine for content topics.

While there are tactics that can drive users to your content — using social media tools such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. — the simplest way to generate buzz is to produce great content. Know your audience, their concerns, their questions and their requests. Selecting the right topic and targeting your audience is the easiest way to generate buzz and keep users coming back.

Social Media Universe

Hello everyone!

We hope you all had a great weekend, it has been a long one over here!

How is SM treating you all? The more times goes by the more we realize that SM already plays a massive role in almost everything we do everyday and it will become even more essential in the coming years as the wheels of business turn faster and faster.

Social Networks are expanding more and more to fit their users’ needs and requirements but which will take the cake at the end of this long social battle? Which SM network do you think is the most valuable and why?

Let us know and also remember, we still want to hear from you regarding brands to go under the analysis tool so let us know who you want us to take a look at.


The Social Media Globe

Social Media has become an every day tool which is somehow automatically integrated into everything we as people do.

But how is Social Media really taking the world by storm? Have you stopped to think of the ways people are using this “miracle” tool so far?

The answer is simple, it doesnt matter how many analyses are carried out on whichever business or brand, it is more than clear that the circle of social platforms being used are expanding as well as the areas where these are being used. This poses a challenge for all of the business trying to keep up with their customers and that is where we come in, we have adopted the tools and the knowledge to pick up anything anywhere at anytime!


If you would like to find out more about what we do feel free to contact Peru Fourie on 02078145282 and we will be more than happy to help you!

Social Media: Business Responsiveness

Greetings to all.

How is Social Media working for you? Here we discover everyday a new way we and a business could benefit from the use of SM, once again, the possibilities are endless.

The fact that engagement is made possible between a brand and a customer via SM is the main interest at this given time and place. The ability for a business to incorporate this into their way of thinking is what will place them in a different bracket in the business world.

If you have any questions regarding our services feel free to call Peru Fourie on 02078145282, we will be more than happy to help.

Social Media Image Sizing Guide

8 Tips to Better Organize Your Social Media Efforts

Ask Alain Classe

20120708-234416.jpgSocial Media Management can be a difficult task, no matter how long you’ve been, no matter what is your experience on Facebook, Twitter, WordPress, Youtube, Pinterest or any of the other platforms.
If you compare Social Media with Athletism It’s better to be a marathonian than a sprinter, Social Media is a long journey…, not a sprint.

What you should monitor is your organization, it is the key to limit your frustration, your effort and your time and for the latest point, in the Hospitality Industry, days seems always too short.

Below are few ways that you can use to better organize your social media efforts.

  • Developp a Social Media Calendar
  • You must remember your Monthy, Weekly or Daily Social Media Agenda must be livable, you should post on a regurarly basis, to post once a day or a week on Facebook or Twitter there is no interest. If you…

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How to create an irresistible LinkedIn group

1 inShare

What makes a LinkedIn group engaging and sticky? Certainly the discussions, posts, content and interactions within the group, but you must first build your group on a strong foundation. For that, you need an excellent group description and set of group rules.

Fortunately we have Anne Thornley-Brown, group manager of “Event Planning and Event Management” (founded and owned by Julius Solaris) to show us how.

Group description

Let’s take a look at some elements you should include in your group’s description:

1. Invest in a branded logo.

It is worth taking a little time to upload (or create and upload) a nicely branded logo. This will lend a sense of trust and cohesiveness, especially if people already know you through other venues.

2. Put keywords in your group’s title and description fields.

You might have the most awesome group in the world, but if no one can find it, it’s going to be a lot harder to get new members. Make sure you include all the key terms you think people will use to search for your group. Those keywords should also be in the title.

3. Identify your USP.

What is your unique selling proposition? What makes you different from all the other groups out there? Use your group description to share it with potential members.

4. Explain what’s in it for members.

Why in the world would a LinkedIn member join yet another group when there are so many other useless ones out there? Well, tell them why! Tell people what they can expect to get out of the group. Which of their problems, frustrations, needs and desires will your group solve?

5. Explain what members can do for the group.

Like children, sometimes group members need to be told what to do. Give them boundaries and ideas. What does their participation bring to the group?

6. Create a spam policy.

Have one, and then direct your members to it. (See group rules below.)

7. List contact information for the group’s management.

Make it easy for your members to get in touch with your managers, moderators and you. Share email addresses, social links, etc. Let your members know if you have more than one manager or moderator for the group, and tell members how they can get in touch with them.

8. Make group links.

Create a link for your group that is easy to remember (such as, and share it in the group. If you use your group description in your group invitation, the group link will be hyperlinked. Make it easy to share and find.

9. Use hashtags.

If you encourage your members to interact on Twitter, be sure to create and share a hashtag (and even a Twitter chat) for your group.

Group rules

It is crucial to have a good set of group rules. The rules from Thornley-Brown’s group are the most complete I have seen on any LinkedIn group to date.

1. Tell your members what constitutes spam.

I like what Thornley-Brown does in her group. She allows the membership to define what spam means to them. (I did the same with my group). You will notice a variety of answers. You can also define spam for your group. If people don’t like it, they can leave.

2. Tell your members how to flag spam.

Let your membership help you manage spam. Show them what they can do when flagging and reporting spam-like content.

3. Tell your members what they can and cannot share.

Make it clear which members are allowed to share and how they are allowed to share. Can they include contact information? Is a free webinar spam? What constitutes valuable information? What types of content can they share? Give them details.

4. Activate the jobs and promotions tabs.

People will always have jobs and promotions to post in your group. Fortunately, there is a place to put them.

Don’t be afraid to kick people out, and let your members know there will be consequences. Tell people right off the bat that you have a three strike policy, and don’t hesitate to kick those people out.

5. Set your settings.

Another thing should do is make sure your settings are the way you want them. Fortunately, Neal Shaffer wrote an article on this topic. Click here to read it.