As human beings, we’ve always had opinions – and many of us have always been willing to share them. Although, in the past, the sharing of opinion would be confined to friends, family and colleagues, these days we can voice our views to thousands of people with just a couple of clicks.
For businesses, this means that there’s, effectively, nowhere left to hide. Customers can now express their views on a brand or product’s performance on a huge number of forums and social media outlets quickly and easily. Although this is great if those customers are singing the brand’s praises, it can spell disaster when they’re doing the opposite.
Some of the most important tools for business in 2019 are those which deal with sentiment analysis – this is basically using technology to gauge the emotion, or sentiment, behind attitudes and opinions shared online either in reviews or on social media, and is vital for a brand’s survival.
Of course, a brand could hire somebody to spend all day trawling messages and posts in order to get a sense of the context but, thankfully, there is a quicker and easier way – several of them in fact! We take a look at some of the best tools out there for sentiment analysis.
As the name suggests, New York based Critical Mention is all about finding and analysing mentions of your brand online. Specialising in broadcast monitoring, online news tracking and social media tracking, Critical Mention is a well respected sentiment analysis tool used by some major worldwide companies. Pricing is on a subscription basis – although accurate pricing is only available upon request, it’s thought that subscription prices range from $29 to $99 per month.
Focussing on social networks, Quick Search’s extensive services include brand overview, real-time trends, content ideation and competitive intelligence which allows comparison with other, similar brands. Like most sentiment analysis tools, pricing for Quick Search is not advertised but is thought to start from $29 per month – with a very basic package available free of charge.
Quick and simple, Real Eyes allows users to download an automated summary of what folk are saying about a brand, product or campaign. Users can filter results by profile or demographic and, can also compare their results against competitors to get a better picture of the market. Features include Sentiment Scoring, Sentiment Scaling, Sentiment Clusters, Customer Segments and audience diagnostics for a great, all round picture of customer comments and responses. Unlike many similar tools, Real Eyes is available for French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Spanish and Chinese speaking audiences as well as English.
Available in over 50 languages, Hootsuite is able to analyse news sites, forums, blog posts and social media platforms to quickly provide insights based on sentiment. Users can filter by demographic, including location and gender as well as by keyword. Hootsuite is also able to (for the most part) recognise emojis to provide a more in-depth analysis. Hootsuite offers a free, very basic package and, group subscriptions start from around $16,000 per year.
Thought to be one of the most reliable sentiment analysis tools, Repustate is able to extract and analyse insights from news sites, surveys, blog posts and social media outlets and, is available in 23 different languages. In addition to reliability, Repustate is also known for its great customer service. Packages range from $99 per month to $1699 per month and, a free 7 day trial is available.
This handy tool is free to use – which is one of our favourite prices! For use only with Twitter, this is nonetheless useful for extracting data from a week’s worth of tweets – fast. Not only is NCSU Tweet Visualizer free to use but it’s really easy to use too – simply hover your cursor over a dot to see individual tweets and, their position on the sentiment range. Users can toggle between sentiments, topics and heatmaps.
Based in Boston, Lexalytics boasts that it turns customers’ thoughts into actionable insights. Lexalytics uses Salience and Semantria platforms to monitor social media and offer insights on reputation management. Once again, pricing for Lexalytics is available on request.
A cloud based data mining tool, Rapid Miner uses machine learning to perform sentiment analysis. Brands are able to identify currently trending topics and collect responses and feedback, including sentiment measuring. Rapid Miner also features a heatmap for mapped Tweets and a time ordered sequence to put conversations into context. Although Rapid Miner does struggle with some responses such as sarcasm, it’s free to use and so a good one to keep in a brand’s arsenal.
This useful little tool works in real time to allow users to instantly receive a heatmap of analytics showing emotional comments and responses. This is particularly useful for brand’s experiencing a crisis as it allows for constant, right up to date monitoring. Heatmap offers a basic service free of charge with full subscriptions costing $100 and $200 per month.
Calling itself a ‘social intelligence company’ Brand Watch creates bespoke sentiment analysis solutions for an impressive range of businesses including British Airways, Walmart, Whirlpool and Unilever. Prices are – you guessed it – available on request.
Meaning Cloud provides a multilingual service for analysing and identifying the emotional content of words, phrases and sentences. This sophisticated tool is able to distinguish between opinion and fact, agreement and disagreement and, can even detect irony which is quite unusual for a tool of this kind. Meaning Cloud also features an Excel add in for Windows. Naturally, this level of sophistication doesn’t come cheap – subscription packages range from $99 to $999 per month. However, this is a very basic free of charge option available.
Fairly basic compared to some of the other tools available, Feefo is able to monitor feedback from news sites and social media outlets and identify trends relatively easily. Although not the most sophisticated tool out there, Feefo is great for those who are looking for a general idea of their brand’s feedback. Prices are available on request.
Working in real time, Social Mention claims to be able to monitor over 100 platforms which include FriendFeed, Digg, Google+, YouTube and more. Social Mention aggregates user content in order to allow them to measure feedback and responses. Free to use, Social Mention doesn’t include a lot of bells or whistles but is a good tool for those just looking for an indication of their brand’s mentions and feedback.
Another freebie, Sentiment Analyzer combines text mining and computational linguistics from a test collection of 8000 text samples in order to spot the sentiment behind the text. Although Sentiment Analyzer is not without its merits, it is limited in that it doesn’t recognise irony or sarcasm at all and, only really works well with American English.
Claiming a staggering 16,000 social web texts per second, SentiStrength is a crude but helpful resource. Free to use (but only for Windows), SentiStrength also claims to have human level accuracy for English although there is no current evidence of this. SentiStrength offers analysis from -1 to -5 for negative feedback and 1 to 5 for positive feedback based on the idea that us humans experience positive and negative emotions in parallel.
A one stop shop for all things online, Cloud Factory offers sentiment analysis as well as image and video annotation, context analysis and statement processing. A popular program for brands looking for more complex algorithms and more in-depth analysis, Cloud Factory is best suited to larger companies. Prices are available on request.
Super-easy to use, Sentigem is able to quickly analyse blocks of text written in the English language in just seconds. Sentigem is able to analyse content and assign it a value of positive, negative or neutral. Sentigem is free to use.
One of the best free tools available, Social Searcher is able to whizz through 100 real time searches per day – completely free of charge. Real time searches of Twitter and Google+ include a number of filter options including social channel, the type of post and the sentiment and, results are neatly colour coded for easy identification. Social Searcher is available for English, German, French, Italian, Portuguese, Russian, Dutch and Spanish languages and includes handy notifications and alerts. Social Searcher also offers paid versions for those looking for a little more power.
Scale combines human and machine learning to create a highly accurate sentiment analysis tool for those needing a little more quality control. Pricing is available on request through the website.
A fairly basic but effective sentiment analysis tool, Talk Walker allows users to manage risks by using its technology to identify high risk posts in real time, allowing for fast action. Talk Walker packages start from $6240 per year with more sophisticated packages to be priced upon request.
Based in the Big Apple, Meaning Cloud uses its two decades of experience to create high quality cloud based text analytics for business. Accurate and reliable, Meaning Cloud is one of the most professional tools on the market today and costs between $99 and $999 per month with a free version available for those happy with something a little more basic.
With so many tools out there, brands really are spoilt for choice when it comes to finding out what their customers really think – enabling them to act on that information.
Post from Milosz Krasinski