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Coding Social Media "Responses"

Bassett Hound with HUGE Ears perked upThere is a whole new and improved research segment blooming out there -- social media research.  There are experts out there who will scan the social media sites for chatter about your company and your brand.  They will make sense of a and filter seemingly meaningless chatter and mine it for marketing intelligence you can use in your next campaign.

But what if you don't need that high a level of research but still want to listen to your target audience?

Here are some ideas for analyzing social media comments that I found :

Basic Categories to Listen For:

  • Praise

  • Criticism

  • Recommendation

Next, tag the social media channel:

  • Blog

  • Facebook

  • LinkedIn

  • Twitter

  • Other

The next level of coding might include:

  • Brands mentioned

  • People mentioned

  • Subsidiaries/Locations

Finally, you can start breaking out specific items or concepts that appear in the comments.

What to Listen For

Coding social media comments is a little different from coding data in that these aren't responses to specific questions.  It's actually a lot like Jeopardy (the game show) where the comments are answers to questions that you will have to intuit.

Each comment or statement gives you more information than you might expect.  You will have a user -- the person who made the comment.  You can look at their profile, and learn about what demographic or psychographic they are in.  Instead of asking questions YOU want answers to -- you'll be able to see what's really most important to your audience and the hot button issues they have around your brand.

You can ultimately use this kind of information to develop survey questions that are more targeted and in tune with where your audience is.

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