MSI Paper on “Social Media Intelligence” Wins Two Awards

April 22, 2014

At the Spring MSI Trustees meeting, David Schweidel, Wendy Moe, and Chris Boudreaux were announced as the winners of two MSI awards for their paper, “Social Media Intelligence: Measuring Brand Sentiment from Online Conversations.”

Their 2012 report, which tested a new approach for measuring online brand sentiment, received the 2014 Robert D. Buzzell Best Paper Award for its significant contribution to marketing practice and thought. It also earned the first-ever MSI Top Download Award as the paper most downloaded by marketers and academics in its first year of publication.

In the study, Schweidel, Moe, and a team from the social media consultancy Converseon developed a statistical model that adjusted for various factors—such as venue and posting dynamics—that can influence posted opinions. Their model allowed them to isolate a measure of underlying brand sentiment from how customers felt about individual product attributes within the brand portfolio.

They tested the model using two datasets focused on a single enterprise software brand. The first was provided by Converseon, which scoured the Web from June 2009 to August 2010 to collect comments relating to the brand. The second dataset was collected via a telephone survey of 1,055 registered customers over the same period.

The authors found almost no correlation between the telephone survey results and a blanket measure of average online sentiment that is typically used by marketers. When they compared the telephone survey’s results with their model’s adjusted measure of online brand sentiment, however, the correlation was approximately .80, which is quite a strong relationship.

Their findings demonstrate the potential for social media to be incorporated into the brand’s research activities, but only if marketers use the right measurement tools. “Marketers must cast a wide net across venues when monitoring social media. To understand underlying brand sentiment, they need models that account for differences across those venues and customers.  Aggregate measures may offer ‘easy’ answers, but they don’t provide a reliable understanding of how customers feel about your brand,” says Moe.

Download full paper:
Social Media Intelligence: Measuring Brand Sentiment from Online Conversations
David A. Schweidel, Wendy W. Moe, and Chris Boudreaux (2012)

Related links

Social Media Intelligence
Wendy Moe (2013) [Video]


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