How Brands Can Shape a Message on Social Media

Staying on top of social media messaging is a challenge for any marketer. It doesn’t matter if you’re coming fresh off the heels of a killer campaign; you’ve got to be able to read into new circumstances and get back in the batter’s box. And a water-tight social media analysis is how you do it.

No one ever said that marketing was easy, but the right approach will help you read the room with your audience and adjust your strategy accordingly. We’ll explore how brands can shape a message on social media, with a focus on:

  • Understanding existing narratives
  • Crafting messaging that resonates
  • Aligning with influencers and key opinion leaders

A focused social media analysis is the cure to what ails most marketers. With ever-shifting consumer perception and behavior, staying in touch with the voice of the customer is mission-critical to your marketing messaging. Here’s a few stats relevant to our discussion to keep in mind:

  • Only 61% of marketers feel their strategies are effective, and 58% find audience targeting a challenge.
  • Social listening is the number one tool marketers use to inform their social media strategies.
  • 89% of marketers say Instagram is their go-to platform for influencer marketing.

Honestly, without a solid social media analysis to inform your efforts, your marketing will be flying blind. A keen understanding of the consumer landscape through social listening should be your guiding light.

Let’s explore what that looks like.

Understanding Existing Narratives

Since most brand’s marketing budgets aren’t infinite, it pays to make sure your messaging is hitting the nail on the head. In other words, spending time on messaging that misses your audience or targets a waning trend is money better spent elsewhere.

Therefore, a social media analysis that uncovers emerging trends will help you focus on more impactful topics to get the most bang out of your marketing dollars. Social media is full of noise, and data visualizations illuminate existing narratives and how they play out over time.

Quite simply, social media monitoring is your window into what’s hot and what’s not. So, to make sure that you’re maximizing your messaging efforts, understanding the emerging themes that have captured your audience’s attention is critical.

For instance, let’s say your brand or client needs to know more about how the climate change conversation is playing out. Social listening allows us to tune into the major narratives to find where we can align our marketing message for the best fit between our brand and emerging trends.

To that end, a data visualization of the top ten climate change conversations on social media over the past month is invaluable.


Network map featuring the top ten social media topics within the climate change conversation. 6/21/21-7/21/21

This social media analysis supplies us with a buffet of thematic options which we can use to align our brand messaging with climate change. And we can do so with confidence knowing these are emerging trends with lots of traction.

However, suppose you’re interested in preparing messaging for a longer-term campaign. In that case, it never hurts to run a social media analysis using historical data to see if your topic is on the decline.

For example, here’s a social media analysis of the same climate change discussion stretched over two years. As you can see, the renewable energy solutions conversation in yellow continues to grow incrementally during that time.


Timeline of climate change conversations on social media. Renewable energy cluster highlighted in yellow. 7/21/19-7/21/21

From this perspective, we can see the entire climate change conversation is growing. Additionally, we know that aligning our messaging with renewables is a strong bet since it features prominently in our short and long-term social media analyses.

Crafting Messaging That Resonates

Once you’ve narrowed down the topic(s) you’d like to center your messaging around, it’s beneficial to run a social media analysis that isolates your specific theme. Doing so allows you to dive into the topic uncluttered by extraneous noise

The goal here is to understand what consumers are feeling about the topic at hand. Most importantly, you need to know where their pain points are to address them in your messaging. That’s how you consistently craft messaging that resonates with your custom audience.

The goal of your messaging should be to show your audience that you see their wants and needs concerning the topic at hand. You also need to offer insight that informs or helps alleviate a problem.

So, whether you are looking for ideas for one-off social media posts or to build a long-term campaign, your social media analysis will lead you to the topics that resonate with your audience.

Drilling down into the topical sub-clusters of our renewables analysis, we find conversations around the hashtag #plasticfreejuly. Here, this brand used the opportunity to educate its audience on the different types of plastic and which ones are difficult to recycle.


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A post shared by Imperfect Foods (@imperfectfoods)

While Imperfect Foods is primarily a grocery delivery service, aligning with this messaging resonates with its audience. Your marketing can expand your positive brand association in line with emerging trends by speaking to the topics that your consumers find interesting or helpful.

But that’s not all a social media analysis is good for – let’s check it out

Partner with Influencers & Piggyback on KOL Messaging

To get your message on the fast track with trending conversations, you need to enlist the help of influencers already operating in the space. The good news is your social media analysis will tell you what authors are active in your area of interest.

Your social media analysis offers you a two-for-one special here as you’ll be able to not only identify influencers to help your marketing message – but you’ll also identify key opinion leaders active on the topic.

As you’re probably aware, key opinion leaders have a lot to do with why emerging trends got there in the first place. Consumers and professionals trust their opinions. So, when you’re crafting new messaging to tie into emerging trends, connecting into key opinion leader conversations is a must.

That means understanding who they are, what they’re saying, and what kind of initiatives they’re involved in. That way, you ensure that your messaging isn’t contradictory. And if like Greta Thunberg, your key opinion leaders are keen on using hashtags, you can piggyback on those too to help raise the visibility of your messag

And since getting KOLs to endorse your marketing messaging is nearly impossible, getting an influencer or two to help get the message out is the next best thing!

Whether you’re building rapport with an existing audience or crafting messaging in hopes of targeting a new one, a thoughtful social media analysis is your best bet for success. Drill into your consumer’s interests and needs to discover your options and narrow down your messaging opportunities.

Once you’ve got that dialed in, align with KOL conversations to stay in touch with the most relevant discussions and hashtags. Lastly, dig into the influencers operating in the space to help you get the message out quickly.

Crafting impactful messaging for your brand doesn’t have to feel like searching for a needle in a haystack. Reach out for a demo, and we’ll show you how a social media analysis is a game-changer for your marketing efforts.

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