Adding Dimension to Social Media Data

How third-party datasets can enhance social analysis

Social media echo chamber is a term frequently used to describe being confined to one’s social circles, but through digital platforms. Being in a data echo chamber is equally undesirable if your goal is comprehensive data analysis. When conducting data analysis, it is easy to overlook the bigger picture by only using social media data. Whether it’s incorporating external data into your social media data analysis or simply referencing the context of the social media discussion, you strengthen analysis by acknowledging the offline events that take place. In this post, I outline examples of using external data to help draw the connection between the online and offline worlds.


Measuring Social ROI for the Super Bowl

It is well-known that the Super Bowl is also a Brand Bowl, a glorious hodgepodge of capitalism where brands create ads with the intent to dazzle audiences, enhance their brand, and drive revenue. Because social media is a barometer that measures audiences’ reactions, the social media discussion for large events like the Super Bowl yields high volumes. But not all discussion is equal — some brands experience more social buzz than others.


The Best Picture Winner Doesn’t Always Get All of the Awards

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An average person can probably deduce that a Best Picture nominee will receive the “Oscars boost.” But how can social media data help us unearth findings about which movies are resonating with audiences, and how that discussion drives movie ticket sales?

We decided to look at Best Picture nominees from 2010 to 2015. In order to clearly assess the impact of a Best Picture nomination, we segmented social media discussion and box office revenue into two categories — pre-nomination and post-nomination. We then took the ratio of pre-nomination to post-nomination for social media discussion and box office revenue.
Looking at Best Picture nominees’ social buzz and box office revenue, we were able to find a strong correlation between a film’s post-nomination social buzz and post-nomination box office revenue (r>0.50). Eighty-three percent of Oscar nominees received more than 50 percent of their total social conversation volume after their nomination. We can see that Oscar nominations have a big impact on social buzz and vice-versa.


Incorporating external datasets adds another dimension to your analysis, enriching it. For more on our methods, read about how we developed the Cult Classic Ratio.

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