Black Friday is over, and we have the early scoop on how retail brands used social media to try and boost their sales. Given that sales are reported to have dropped by as much as 11%, those methods appear not to have succeeded. Some results were unfortunately predictable: customer demand skyrocketed, but brands didn’t keep up. Some outcomes were more surprising...
We monitored Twitter and Instagram for Black Friday mentions, and visualized the data in an interactive heat map.
We also tracked all of the buzz as it developed over time. The results give an amazingly quick overview of where and when Black Friday is a factor for marketers in the days before and after the big sale.
Socialbakers Analytics backed the conclusions from the map up, and allowed us to dig even further back to find the root of Black Friday mentions on social. We saw that demand began to rise steadily for Retail brands at the end of September.
That means that if you manage social for a retail brand in the U.S. (or other countries participating in Black Friday), be prepared to start getting a higher demand for social customer care about 2 months before the event next year. The best approach to dealing with increased customer demand is to hire extra help or use an enterprise tool like Socialbakers Builder that makes it easy to answer more questions, faster.
Later this week, we will be releasing an in-depth study examining how Retail brands coped with the increased demand for social customer care during this lucrative time of year.
We also looked at a sizeable amount of brands to see whether they were boosting their posts more often than normally in the time leading up to Black Friday. Although this seemed to make sense, as it was a chance for a last-minute grab of customers’ attention, our data showed that generally, brands did not increase promoted targeting to take advantage of the opportunity. There was no significant overall change in the proportion of boosted content to organic content leading up to Black Friday.
So the take-away lessons from the pre-Black Friday social rush this year are: be prepared for higher customer care demand, answer your customers’ questions, and remember: targeting your best-performing content during high-value moments is usually a good idea.