The Evolution of Sentiment Analysis in Hotel Social Media

By Alex Tamayo

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Tap Into Your Emotions

For years, sentiment in social media was imprecise, especially when compared to human behavior. Think about it. When someone says, “It’s fine,” it can be interpreted with a lot of different meanings, depending on the context. Humans give clues about these meanings through body language and other cues that indicate the feelings behind what is being said. Emotions are important to the communication equation. And yet, most social media marketing relies on cold metrics to determine sentiment, oftentimes devoid of human context. What can be measured, such as post engagement, shares, or reach tells you little about how your audience feels about your brand. Without that information, you can’t really tell what people are saying about you. Is your audience sharing your posts to make fun of you, or are they singing your praises? Using rapidly improving technology for sentiment analysis, brands can now monitor social media to understand more about what customers are saying, what it means, and what they can do about it.

What Is Sentiment Analysis in Social Media?

Sentiment analysis is a process of social listening in which words are analyzed to study the emotions and feelings of the text. Expressions are classified as positive, negative, and neutral. This eases the labor of sorting through thousands, of social media posts that might potentially lead to a PR nightmare–or a success story. You can use sentiment analysis to monitor brand perception, including negative talk, customer service tickets, and opportunities for amplifying testimonials.

What Tools Are Available for Sentiment Analysis?

BCV uses Amazon Comprehend to process information in social media posts. Every word in a message is analyzed and tagged with a specific sentiment. This program has been used in Amazon’s network, which has years of data to train the machine to make it more effective and offer accurate results. This information can then be presented to the brand team to help deal with positive and negative posts quickly. For example, incorporating sentiment analysis into your marketing strategy can help you identify times when you pick up more positive reviews and when you receive negative messages. This information can translate into actionable ways to improve the guest experience and gain a stronger share of voice among competitors. The more you analyze, the better you get.

Applications of Sentiment Analysis in the Hospitality Industry

The hospitality industry probably gets more chatter online than any other. If you want to know how your audience is feeling about your brand, sentiment analysis is the ticket. Sentiment analysis can not only monitor social media sites, it can also be used to monitor review sites. Trying to monitor every platform on your own can be time-consuming. Sentiment analysis can handle a large amount of data while giving you the information you can act on to make your business better.

At BCV, we use sentiment analysis to score your performance and to find ways to increase the number of positive comments. Our timeline helps you see your audience’s attitude toward your business. This information can be compared to our industry benchmark of sentiment analysis to know how you are doing. 

Data doesn’t exist in a vacuum. There may be events going on in the world that impact your industry and affect how people feel about your destination. Sentiment analysis gives you more input about your messages that accounts for such external influences. 

Sentiment analysis can also be deployed to push content and positive messages to boost your reputation. You can engage with customers when it makes sense to join the conversation without being overly pushy. It’s a multiplier effect that amplifies the positive–and that can minimize the negative reviews. We also address negative reviews to show customers that you care about their experience. 

At BCV, we look at each month’s report to see how customers are responding and to get ahead of the curve. Analyzing the data gives you insights into customer satisfaction before and after events throughout the month. Sentiment analysis can also help you understand your competitors and how your audience is talking about them.

In the hospitality industry, one bad review can easily become a PR nightmare. Too often, the bad reviews hide the positive ones. Staying on top of how your audience feels about your brand helps you manage your reputation. Sentiment analysis gives you the edge in social media marketing.

For more information or to look at a sample report, let’s talk!

Alex Tamayo
About the Author

Alex Tamayo

VP, Monitoring and Data Science

Alex Tamayo is the VP of the Monitoring and Data Science departments. He’s been with the company for over 8 years and has spent the majority of that time monitoring hotel guest messages and overseeing customer service solutions. With that experience serving as a guiding hand, Alex is now harnessing BCV’s vast data lake to deliver audience insights and performance best practices to clients.

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