Social Intelligence about Headphones

Niraj Sharma |
 01/23/13 |
2 min read

millennial woman in headphones

This is the first in a series of posts by Candy Chang, an intern from my alma mater whom I had the pleasure of hosting this past week. She put together a summary of NetBase’s social intelligence report on Sennheiser, a German headphone manufacturer.

My generation has grown up with parents always tugging earphones out of our ears or yanking headphones off our heads, warning us about our imminent deafness. That being said, I’ve been using those cheap, free earphones and hand-me-down iPod ones for the past 7 years. If I’m going to lose my hearing, I should get some nice headphones to do it in style.

But after taking a look at NetBase’s social intelligence report on Sennheiser, I might just hold that thought. I need headphones that can reasonably weather wear and tear (even if I’m in college and my parents aren’t there to wrestle them off my head). Unfortunately, all headphones, no matter what brand, are pretty weak in the durability department. It’s the most talked about and the most disliked out of all headphone attributes, which also include sound quality, design, and cost. About half of all people who want new headphones (and there are a lot—over 800,000 people tweeted last year about wanting headphones) want them as replacements for existing ones—most likely because they’re broken.

This is a pretty important observation because that means all headphone manufacturers have a chance at getting into the lead if they can just figure out how to make themselves the most durable brand (or at least seem like the most durable). Or maybe consumers have resigned to the hope of finding durable headphones and instead just buy them on a regular basis.  If so, couldn’t there be some kind of “headphone of the month club” where your headphones could match the latest styles for the season?

Also shopping for headphones or curious about Sennheiser and too lazy to scroll back up to the link? Check out the complete PowerPoint here.

Not enough time? I’ll be recapping the parts that I found most memorable in a series of short posts.

  1. Not quite lovin’ it
  2. Listening in on the competition
  3. Keep your friends close
  4. Why so negative?
  5. Forest for the trees

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