Emerging Social Media Trends

The search for share of voice and why an ‘always-on’ campaign focused on brand-building will pay off.

Social share of voice has become a popular measure of how much potential market share a brand has. Based on brand mentions, it gives you an accurate view of how many conversations people are having about a brand. It’s simple and it’s accurate. It delivers precisely what it promises.


What it doesn’t promise is purchase intent, nor does it promise an actual indication of market share. Share of voice correlates with market share and revenue, but it should never be confused with social share of voice.

Social share of voice promises share of conversation, this includes if the conversation is even negative, focused on poor customer experience… You will know how many people are talking about you. Remember that it also doesn’t provide the context of the conversation.

Social conversations tend to be skewed towards past experiences and not future intent. There are more, “I bought this, and this is how I feel about it”-type conversations and far less “I’m going to buy this” conversations on social media.

Purchase intent

What would we do without Google? The self proclaimed, “world’s biggest database of human intent”, and it makes perfect sense. The search for information on products, brands and services is often the first step in a consumer’s journey to purchase. It stands to reason then that organic share of search will determine purchase intent. In fact, research shows that share of search directly correlates with market share.

A leading indicator

Share of search is also a leading indicator of market share. If share of search goes up, the market share goes up in the months and years that follow. While search has been used to predict buying behaviour, the key difference is that we can now see that share of search is actually a long-term predictor of brand health. While we’re used to looking at search to understand current behaviour, when looked at over greater periods, search’s forecasts are active.

Search and sentiment

Compared to other tools, share of search has proven to be the most accurate forecasting tool currently available. Where it fails is or comes short is that it doesn’t provide the ‘why’ of search. For example, when there is a PR nightmare, share of search may go up and share of market may go down. People will search the brand to get more information on the problem while their interest in purchase drops. While the brand is ticking along , these are not considerations.

Going back to the social share of voice, we know that on its own, it’s only useful for determining sentiment. When we pair it with a share of search, we can now determine why people are searching. If the sentiment is positive and search goes up, an increase in market share is likely. Conversely, negative sentiment and a drop in share of search is a sign that things are not going well.

Brand advertising

To end off Share of search has also demonstrated that any kind of burst marketing campaign can have a long-lasting effect on share of search. It’s proof that any kind of always-on campaign that is focused on brand-building will pay off.

Reference: #BizTrends2021: Search share of voice; an emerging trend by Craig Hannabus

Post by Marc

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