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Using forum analysis to gain audience insights

Forum analysis

Forum analysis can be intimidating. With pages and pages of conversations, obscure usernames and exclusive lingo – it’s formidable territory. But forums also happen to be a goldmine for gaining insights into niche groups of people.

There’s a forum for practically anything – bread stapled to trees, unstirred paint and people with bird heads – meaning there’s almost certainly a conversation dedicated to your brand.

Relative Insight is the key to utilizing this mess of unstructured qualitative data. Using text analysis, we compare two or more written data sets to discover the subtle differences, similarities and frequencies in word usage. Our technology pinpoints the words, phrases, grammar, topics and emotion seen more prominently in one data set compared to the other.

What can we compare?

Competitor Benchmarking
Let’s start with brand comparison. We can compare how forum users discuss brand A compared to brand B, revealing the language they associate with each brand and what emotions are tied to those opinions. Forum analysis shows us what separates the two brands in the eyes of the consumer, giving your brand the insight to make strategic decisions, capitalize on strengths and overcome weaknesses.

Check out: Comparing online marketplaces through the language of seller forums

Source Comparison
Forums can also be utilized in multi-source comparisons. By comparing forum data against social data or reviews, we can uncover attributes unique to users of each platform. Additionally, comparing forum data to your own company communications allows you to understand where there are gaps in public perception. Forum analysis uncovers discrepancies in how your company presents itself and how it is experienced by customers, helping to foster consistent brand image.

Check out: Is there a difference between how home workout brands talk vs their customers?

Audience Insights
You can use forum data to research your target audiences and different demographic groups. Relative Insight can analyze how men vs. women feel about a brand, how older vs. younger customers discuss a topic, how New Yorkers communicate compared to Californians or how a discussion changes over time. By using forum analysis to compare audiences – like gender, age, location or time – you can learn how to successfully market to each segment of potential customers.

Check out: Millennials and Gen X: Is anyone investing in their future at the moment?

How does it work?

After uploading your data, Relative Insight highlights the topics, words, phrases, grammar and emotion used by one data set more than the other. You’ll also see the significance of that trait through the metric we call Relative Difference. Relative Difference is a number indicative of the likelihood that word or phrase will be used by one data set. For example, you might see a data set 5x or 2x more likely to use the word happy compared to the other.

How can Relative Insight help you?

Forums are a treasure trove of written social media data, but it’s just the beginning. Relative Insight can uncover insights from qualitative data sources like surveys, transcripts, forums, blogs, website copy or social media. Using your data, Relative Insight can help your brand or agency discover linguistic insights that lead to targeted communication and successful brand strategies.

Relative Insight can do it all – from social listening data to reviews and long-form open-ended survey results! Contact us using the form below and we’ll show you how.

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