Engaging Playfully with Consumers to Stand Out Online

There’s a time and place for humor – and online provides ample opportunity to capture those moments. Brands monitoring social media with next generation AI-powered social listening are taking full advantage of all online offers by engaging playfully, and relevantly, with consumers in real-time. They’re finding that it’s not only helping them stand out online, but also proving the value of social listening to key internal stakeholders.

Cleaning Up Online with Playful Engagement

Sports fans are a competitive lot. And their extreme love touches every sub-category from football to esports. Though football (both American football and futbol worldwide, aka soccer in the U.S.) probably ranks highest when it comes to passionate team loyalties. And this translates to capturing a signficiant share of conversation overall:

Football probably ranks highest when it comes to passionate team loyalties and share of conversation overall

So, when its home team, the UGA Bulldogs was up against The Fighting Irish from rival Notre Dame, a local Athens, Georgia supermarket, Dills Food City, made a clever marketing move. It removed its supply of Irish Spring soap from the shelves to show its support. And shared the move on social media, where it was immediately picked up by a number of top news sites:

media mentions of Irish Spring soap removed from grocery store shelves ahead of game

Thanks to real-time listening and advanced logo recognition capabilities, Irish Spring was alerted to the mentions and able to take advantage of the viral opportunity. They responded very quickly, with a playful post of their own directed at the “rival” team:

Irish Spring's playful response to engage consumers

And as Mallory O’Brien, Associate Manager of Social Listening and Engagement at Colgate-Palmolive shared, the response was made possible by its use of advanced social listening capabilities it uses in NetBase! Not only that, it helped support the case for using social listening, just in general:

Mallory O’Brien, Associate Manager of Social Listening and Engagement at Colgate-Palmolive talking about power of social listening for engaging playfully

How did social analytics offer an assist? Let’s check it out!

Real-time Alerts

Capturing a spike in mentions as they happen is crucial. You can’t leave it up to savvy employees to happen to see when lots of people start mentioning your brand. Nor can you rely solely on customer care folks to sound the alarm, as they quickly end up in the weeds once a crisis is in play. And by the time these folks are aware there’s a problem, “alerted” by a huge number of calls or @mentions happening online at once, the crisis is already out of control.

So, having the ability to algorithmically monitor online mentions, and catch things as they start to spin up, is really the only way to go. And, in NetBase, brands can set triggered, any mention and any metric alerts to tell them when:

  • There’s a dramatic shift in sentiment:

being alerted to dramatic sentiment shifts

  • An influential author mentions “boycott” or other trigger words (applied to a saved analysis in the tool):

being alerted to hot button topics

  • An unusual volume fluctuation occurs. Brands can set the alert strength and stamina to ensure they capture the precise level of change that makes sense for how the brand historically performs. For example, some brands may experience passionate post fluctuations on any given day – just as part of its normal business operations. They wouldn’t want to be alerted every time this happens, so they could set the severity much higher than a brand with a pretty mellow following. Having the ability to tailor this alert offers a brand amazing flexibility and saves lots of time (in addition to worry):

triggered alerts, set by intensity

Logo Recognition

Assuming there wasn’t a huge influx of mentions, or that there were but in the form of the Irish Spring imagery being shared instead of the brand words – what then? Well, then our largest social listening logo library in the industry would have picked it up just as quickly.

And it would even capture partial, rotated and modified logos too:

partially covered, rotated and modified logo recognition capabilities

Responding Relevantly for Playful Replies

Being able to catch the insight right away is huge, of course. But, it’s of little use if a brand is left scrambling to understand context. And engaging playfully with consumers, like Irish Spring did here, requires relevant understanding, that’s for sure! With incredibly transparent social analytics insight, brands are able to click through to see precisely what is behind an uptick in mentions:

sorting out the root of sentiment fluctuations in NetBase

Not only that, but to accurately assess who is talking, specifically, and where. And also whether the mentions are positive, negative or neutral. And why. Brands then need to be able to see how the larger conversation looks.

  • What else is being discussed in context?
  • Are competitors being mentioned? And are those mentions positive, negative or neutral?
  • How is this conversation impacting our share of voice in the category?
  • Are category influencers talking about this? Are their posts resonating? Should we partner with them?

The opportunities real-time social listening offers are pretty endless. And there’s certainly an opportunity for your brand to engage meaningfully with consumers too. Many of them – we’re sure of it! Reach out and we can show you how to make your own social listening splash, and demonstrate the power of social analytics to your skeptical stakeholders.

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