Social Intelligence: How Twitter and Instagram Deliver the Consumer’s Voice

Posted by
Devon Bergman on 12/6/17 5:00 AM

Every business owner knows the immense value of social media data, but few have figured out how to harness its full potential, especially as it relates to the voice of the consumer. The first step to interpreting this voice is to understand the best platforms for analysis. 

When it comes to generating business intelligence from social data, many businesses focus on the raw number of people they can reach on platforms, such as Facebook. Unfortunately, the world’s largest social media platform only provides aggregate user data about a company’s own follower and fan-bases. Snapchat and LinkedIn are no different. This limits your ability to generate true insights.

In contrast, Instagram and Twitter give access to all posts from public users on their platforms. This provides the power to sift through everything anyone says about your brand, products, competitors and anything else within your industry. With this granularity, it is important to look at the conversation streams on each platform separately.


Let’s dig a bit deeper into the intelligence you can glean from Twitter and Instagram and why its important to look at them separately.


For the last ten years, people on Twitter have talked in 140-character posts. Even though this limit was recently expanded, most users continue to talk in bite-sized segments. Twitter pioneered the usage of the hashtags and @-replies that have become ubiquitous across all social media platforms today.

With regards to consumers, you will mostly find data that is news-driven and customer service focused. Twitter is a great resource for companies that are looking to gauge their PR efforts, topical updates, and crisis management.

Instagram_logo_2016.png Instagram

It’s hard to imagine a world without Instagram. Debuting in 2010, the app dedicated to “capturing and sharing the world’s moments” acquired over 25,000 users in its first day. Instagram has no character limit so it is easier to mine its social stream for deep data analysis.

Most Instagram users post mainly lifestyle photos for friends and family and when they post about brands they typically focus on the brands they love to use and are excited about sharing. This makes it an ideal data source when you’re looking to learn what people are consuming in the moment. 


Function follows form in social media, and the differences between Twitter and Instagram post types drive important nuances in the conversations on each platform.


Here's an example:

Wicked Weed Brewing was acquired by Anheuser-Busch InBev in May 2017. Here’s how the data looked on Twitter vs. Instagram.


After the announced acquisition of Wicked Weed by ABInBev, Wicked Weed’s Twitter conversations spiked as a market share of Craft Beer conversations. Using the Social Standards Platform and our knowledge of typical Twitter language, we were able to determine that this spike was driven by the press around the acquisition, not the consumers.

Wicked Weed Brewing Twitter Spike  


However, Wicked Weed conversations on Instagram never saw that spike. Conversely, they saw a dramatic drop in market share of Craft Beer conversations on Instagram as the loyalists stopped communicating about the brand.  

Wicked Weed Instagram



Gotta Keep ‘Em Separated

At Social Standards we purposely separate the data from Twitter & Instagram within our platform because we know the importance of looking at the data from all perspectives to give contextual value to your insights.

We have built out each and every consumers’ social conversational map by market vertical enabling you to comparatively explore every facet of the discussion taking place around your brand and your industry. These maps empower our clients to truly understand their consumer’s voice and provide the intelligence necessary to grow a business through new:

  • Brand positioning
  • Targeting opportunities
  • Product innovations

The intelligence gleaned from Twitter and Instagram represents a trove of untapped value for businesses looking to mine social conversation and generate true insights. Companies who fail to grasp this will miss out on a key competitive advantage. Those who do get it are able to predict profitable trends, avoid costly fads, and address customer dissatisfaction before it materially affects their bottom line.


If you need more help driving growth in your business, contact us today.

Topics: social analytics, social data, social intelligence

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