Santa’s Social Sentiment Naughty & Nice List

NickArnett |
 12/25/18 |
3 min read

We know Santa has helpers – or he’d never get everything done. Maybe he even uses social sentiment to inform his business strategy, like all smart businesses.

Here are some insights from NetBase, surfaced with Santa in mind.

Top Christmas List Requests

Analyzing the topic “Christmas list” gives us an idea of what terms are popping up as consumers envision the perfect gift:

There are a lot of positive words indicating consumer excitement, like “great,” “perfect,” “amazing,” “best,” etc.

So what brands break through within this same search?

Perhaps not surprisingly, ecommerce brands are front and center – though the most prominent three are distinctly different.

Amazon is top-dog of online shopping – or is it? Artisan-centric Etsy is right there as well – so don’t discount the desire for unique, hand-crafted gifts. Finally, YouTube might seem like an odd companion here, but where else can you see a product in action and decide if it’s right for you?

Other brands and products in the mix include Nintendo, iTunes, Gucci, Hermes, Sunsilk, Kindle, iPhone, and iKONICS. That indicates a few gift-giving themes: tech gifts, luxury gifts, and K-Pop music.

Another way to look at this is via the Trending widget:

This gives you a little more detail of the brands and terms getting the most attention on social right now.

Who’s Been Naughty and Who’s Been Nice?

A great product is important, naturally – and there will always be hot ticket items this time of year. But brands can’t rely on a popular product to do all the work for them. It’s the overall experience being offered that really matters – just as the spirit of giving trumps the gifts themselves.

So what is Santa looking for here?

Well, he wants to be sure that children of all ages are being taken care of. So he’d want to look at Sentiment Drivers to understand how consumers feel as they shop for their loved ones.

Attributes tell him the terms recurring in social conversations. For all the compliments about Christmas gifts, there are a lot of negative terms about money, stress, and heartbreak.

These are the kinds of topics his helpers should explore to understand the specifics. One way to do that is to look at the Emotions being shared in social posts.

Luckily there are lots of positive emotions – but that doesn’t mean you can shrug off the negative ones. Left to fester, negativity on social can go viral and become a brand crisis.

Since the holidays are a time when customer issues abound, brands must carefully monitor issues on social and be prepared with solutions – or they risk ruining people’s holidays, and losing valuable customers.

Another contender for the Naughty List is this UK hotel chain, who reneged on an offer to house the homeless over the Christmas holiday:

Shipping deadlines have thwarted some shoppers…

…as have political concerns. All of these are cause for examination by brands wishing to stay in Santa’s – and consumers’ – good graces.

What do brands need to do to get onto the Nice List? They need to use their social listening and sentiment analysis tools to understand what consumers really want.

Terms like “need,” “want,” and “order” will point them in the right direction – but it’s important to note that “give” is the biggest term in the word cloud above. That’s what consumers are really excited about this Christmas – so brands should help them do that in the ways they want.

Santa would definitely approve.

We want to help you start the New Year off on the right foot. Get in touch and we’ll show you all our social analytics tools can do to make 2019 your brand’s best year ever!


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