Sentiment analysis tools

07 Jan 2022  |  by Kristina Kramer

Sentiment analysis (which is sometimes also known as opinion mining) is a natural language processing (NLP) technique that’s used to determine whether data is positive, negative, or neutral. 

In marketing, pieces of text like customer reviews and social media interactions are usually analysed in this way. By running a sentiment analysis, marketing teams can increase their understanding of customer needs and improve their knowledge of customer feedback. On top of this, the analysis also helps marketing teams monitor how customers feel about their brand and product or service.

Sentiment analysis takes many forms. It usually focuses on polarity (positive, negative, or neutral feelings), but it can also be used to measure emotions, urgency, or even intention.

Popular types of sentiment analysis include:

  • Fine-grained sentiment analysis
  • Emotion detection
  • Aspect-based sentiment analysis
  • Multilingual sentiment analysis

No matter which type of sentiment analysis you choose to employ, you’ll need to enlist the help of sentiment analysis tools. These can be used to help you sort, analyse, and interpret your data.

Sentiment analysis tools can help you automatically analyse customer feedback from survey responses, customer service interactions, and social media conversations. Using this data, you can then learn more about what’s making your customers happy or unhappy with your product or service. After the analysis, you can tailor your products and services so they better meet the needs of your customers.

For example, if you ran a survey of all your customers and received thousands of responses, then a sentiment analysis tool could help you sort and organise all this data in a matter of seconds. It would then reveal what customers really thought about your business. Alternatively, a sentiment analysis tool could be deployed on social media. In real time, it could then identify disgruntled customers, allowing you to respond quickly.

With all of this in mind, let’s take a look at what a sentiment analysis tool is. Following this, we’ll outline some popular sentiment analysis examples, discuss the benefits of using sentiment analysis tools, and look at how our products can help you run an effective sentiment analysis.

What is a sentiment analysis tool?

Customer sentiment analysis tools are pieces of AI software that automatically analyse pieces of text. They work by automatically detecting the emotion, tone, and urgency of online posts or conversations. Following this, they then assign each piece of text with a positive, negative, or neutral tag.

Customer sentiment analysis tools provide you with an invaluable insight into your customers. By analysing textual data, they show you how your customers view your brand and product.

What can sentiment analysis tools be used for?

When using a sentiment analysis tool, you can:

  • Select text that includes a certain word, phrase, or pattern. This allows you to highlight customer interactions that focus on a positive or negative aspect of your business
  • Count the words or phrases that appear most often in customer conversations. This helps you highlight trends and popular responses 
  • Train a model to recognise the keywords associated with known good or bad reviews and then use this model to ‘score’ new reviews

There are a number of ways that businesses employ sentiment analysis. But, generally speaking, the most popular sentiment analysis examples include:

Social media monitoring

Customer sentiment analysis tools allow you to gain an insight into how your social media followers feel about certain topics. They also help your customer service team spot issues and respond before a customer churns.

A high number of mentions on social media doesn’t necessarily mean that your business is experiencing more positive interactions. As a result, as well as measuring basic metrics such as likes, comments, and shares, you need to understand how and why people are talking about your brand online. By monitoring conversations, you can understand customer sentiment in real time and over time. So, as well as responding to disgruntled customers quickly, you can also gain an insight into how customer sentiment has changed since you implemented changes. 

Brand monitoring

Customers are more willing than ever to talk about their experiences online. Due to this, you’ll find mentions of your brand on social media, news sites, blogs, forums, and review sites. Like with social media monitoring, simply finding these mentions and counting the volume isn’t enough for your analysis. Instead, you need to measure the quality of these mentions.

Customer sentiment analysis tools automatically analyse the urgency of all brand mentions and route them to designated team members. They also help you get a greater understanding of the feelings and opinions of your customers. 

On top of this, sentiment analysis tools also provide other benefits for your brand. For example, they can show you how the opinion of your brand has evolved over time, and they can help you compare your current reputation to the reputation of your competitors.

Customer service

How you deliver your product or service is just as important as the quality of the product or service you’re delivering. Now, customers expect their interactions with businesses to be seamless, personal, and immediate.

Customer sentiment analysis tools will allow you to use text classification in order to automatically organise support queries by topic and urgency, ensuring they’re routed to the correct department in the right order. Plus, these tools can also be used to help you analyse how your employees are responding to queries and the quality of the support they’re providing.

Voice of Customer

By studying surveys you’ve conducted and customer support interactions you can mine, you can receive valuable feedback from your customers.

By using net promoter score (NPC) surveys, you can directly ask your customers whether they would recommend your business, product, or service to someone else and receive feedback in the form of a numerical score. Using this data, you can then assess whether your customers are promoters, passive consumers, or detractors.

By identifying the overall level of customer experience you’re providing to customers, you can then analyse this data and look at ways all customers can be moved to promoter level. You can also analyse exactly who your promoters are. For example, are they people who hold a specific role, are they people of a certain age, or are they people from a certain socio-economic background? Once you’ve identified this, you can build a profile for an ideal customer. 

In addition to this, although customer sentiment analysis tools allow you to easily quantify and assess numerical data, they can also help you effectively analyse open-ended survey questions. By segmenting your responses into positive and negative interactions, you can truly gain an insight into the emotions and opinions of your customers. By categorising this data and analysing it correctly, you can clearly see improvements you can make to your business and its offering. 

Benefits of using sentiment analysis tools

By extracting and analysing meaning and sentiment from textual data, you can gain real understanding of your customers’ feelings towards your brand or products.

Businesses that correctly employ tools receive many sentiment analysis benefits, including:

1.    The ability to sort data at scale

Manually sorting through, organising, and analysing thousands of tweets, customer support conversations, and surveys would take days. Plus, by the time you’d finished, hundreds of new interactions would need analysing.

Your business has too much data to process manually. By employing sentiment analysis tools, you will gain the ability to process huge amounts of unstructured data quickly, accurately, and cost-effectively.

2.    You can perform analysis in real time

If you gain the ability to sort and analyse your data quickly, you’ll also gain the ability to analyse that data in real time.

For example, by running a sentiment analysis, you can quickly gain an understanding of whether a social media crisis is escalating and requires PR input, or whether an angry customer is about to churn if they don’t receive support or help.

By identifying these situations in real time, your business will be able to respond to problems quickly and effectively. 

3.    The ability to employ consistent criteria

It is often difficult for different individuals to agree on the sentiment of text. This is because different personal experiences, thoughts, and beliefs determine how we respond to certain words and phrases.

However, by using a sentiment analysis tool, you can apply the same criteria and interpretation to all of your data. This will make your analysis more accurate and will improve your insights.

4.    Gain an understanding of customer motivations

By analysing the sentiment around your business and your products, you will understand the motivations behind your customers’ purchasing decisions and the intent behind their purchases.

Your customers are already talking about their likes and dislikes online. Using the information they’re providing, you can learn a lot about what they like or dislike about your business and its offering. By performing a sentiment analysis, you can learn exactly why customers are purchasing your products. For example, you may learn that a certain feature of your product is very popular, or that your customer service exceeds expected standards.

Using all this data, you can refine your marketing strategy and ensure you’re playing to these strengths. 

5.    Measure the effectiveness of your campaigns

Qualitative data is the backbone of any successful marketing analysis. However, to get a rounded idea of how successful your campaign has actually been, you need to also measure your qualitative data.

Although metrics such as likes and shares are incredibly helpful in enabling you to measure the effectiveness of your marketing activities, they only provide you with part of the story. As a result, in order to properly assess the results of your activities, you need to run a sentiment analysis. This will provide you with some context to the numbers and will show you exactly how your audience is responding to your message.

The exact sentiment analysis benefits you’ll experience will depend on the nature of your business and the goals of your organisation. However, it’s possible to achieve all of the above if you utilise your sentiment analysis tools effectively.

Sentiment analysis tools from Apteco

By using sentiment analysis tools to generate actionable insights, you’ll unlock endless possibilities. Our market-leading analysis tools allow you to analyse data, target your audience, and manage your campaigns.

Our sentiment analysis tools are perfect for performing targeting and analysis. With our help, you can collect and analyse text information across multiple platforms, including everything from social media sites to industry-specific forums. In doing so, you can effectively monitor public sentiment and ensure that you are always in a position to respond accordingly.

On top of this, you can also access all of your connected data sources and ensure you’re always making smart decisions that are backed by first-party data. Plus, you can also use our powerful software to share insights and campaign reports with stakeholders and design beautiful, branded dashboards. With our software, your visualisations update automatically, so your teams will always be working with up-to-date information.

If you’d like to learn more about what Apteco marketing software could do for your business, then book a one-to-one demo today.  

Kristina Kramer

Online Marketing Specialist

Kristina Kramer joined Apteco at the beginning of 2019. As online marketing specialist, her responsibilities include taking care of our website and various social media channels as well as the Apteco blog.

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