July 20, 2023

The A to Z Guide to Brand Sentiment Analysis

by Michael Brenner

Brand sentiment describes how your customers and the public at large view your B2B brand, and it plays a huge role in how well you’re able to generate leads, win customers, and grow your business. Without a strong understanding of your company’s public perception and the ability to manage it effectively, your success is left to the whims of what others have to say.

Enter: Brand sentiment analysis.

Brand sentiment analysis is a way to track, understand, and react to the online discourse about your brand so you can actively manage your reputation and differentiate in your market. In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about it—its full definition, why it’s important, key benefits, and the right tools to help you execute.

Quick Takeaways

  • Brand sentiment analysis describes the overall feeling people have about your brand at an individual and collective level.
  • It’s powered by AI-supported, highly automated brand sentiment analysis software tools with sophisticated data insights and reporting capabilities.
  • Key benefits of brand sentiment analysis include: data-driven strategies, active brand reputation management, greater responsiveness, higher retention and lower churn, and increased competitive knowledge.

What is Brand Sentiment Analysis?

Brand sentiment is the overall feeling an individual or group holds about a particular brand or product, typically expressed through online channels such as social media, review sites, news stories, and direct feedback surveys (among others).

Brand sentiment analysis is the comprehensive monitoring of that sentiment conducted by a company to understand how their audience perceives them.

In today’s highly digital and fast-moving marketing and sales environment, brand sentiment analysis has become essential for companies to maintain agile strategies—strategies that can both capitalize on opportunities that generate positive sentiment and quickly resolve issues causing negative sentiment.

This level of real-time, on-the-pulse knowledge of customer needs is still proving tricky for B2B marketers and advertisers—54% report that understanding customer “needs of the moment” is their number one challenge when working to reach their target B2B audiences.

More than half (54%) of B2B marketers and advertisers report that “making sense of customer data to understand the needs of the moment” is their top challenge in reaching their target audiences.

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Brand sentiment analysis is the antidote to this challenge, allowing companies to be responsive to customer needs as they evolve and change, in turn generating higher satisfaction, loyalty, and new business won.

In short: Brand sentiment analysis makes companies more responsive to their customers’ needs and preferences, in turn generating higher satisfaction, loyalty, and new business. 

How to Activate Brand Sentiment Analysis

It’s impossible to execute brand sentiment analysis manually. Instead, it must be done using a brand sentiment analysis software platform powered by AI technology, which can mine massive amounts of data to deliver focused, relevant, accurate customer insights.

The market for these types of tools is steadily on the rise—and expected to stay on its current trajectory—as companies increasingly recognize the importance of brand sentiment analysis to their marketing, sales, and growth potential.

The market for brand sentiment analysis technology tools was valued at $3.15B in 2021 and is expected to more than double that number by 2030.

Bar chart showing the projected growth of the brand sentiment analysis market through 2030.

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Key features and capabilities of brand sentiment analysis tools include:

  • Straightforward Analysis — Classify sentiment from separate and collective datasets as positive, negative, or neutral
  • Multiple Data Types — Natural Language Processing (NLP) technology can pull insights from text sources and other types of unstructured datasets
  • Social Media Monitoring — Monitor brand mentions and sentiment across online social media channels
  • Real-time Analysis — Access always-current data that’s automatically updated
  • Topic and Keyword Identification — Identify and track specific brand-related topics and keywords
  • Sentiment Trend Analysis — Track sentiment changes over time to identify patterns
  • Competitive Analysis — Compare brand sentiment with competitors
  • Customization and Filtering — Customize brand sentiment analysis for demographics, regions, or languages.
  • Reporting and Insights — Generate customized, well-designed reports to drive actionable strategies
  • Multilingual Support — Analyze datasets and sentiment in multiple languages
  • Data Visualization — Make large datasets and insights easy to understand and analyze using charts, graphs, dashboards, and other visual tools

Check out our complete list of Brand Sentiment Analysis Tools to Check Out Now to start your product research and find the tool best suited for your company and strategy needs.

5 Powerful Benefits of Brand Sentiment Analysis 

Data-Driven Customer Insights

Brand sentiment analysis tools deliver data insights that are sophisticated, current, and relevant to your unique company and audience. They enable you to operate a more data-driven strategy informed by objective, systematic, large-scale data analysis vs. manual data collection methods, which are more prone to human error and bias.

Further, brand sentiment analysis software tools make that data more accessible and shareable to key decision makers, allowing for more collaborative and agile strategies. As you can see in the example brand sentiment dashboard pictured below (from software platform MonkeyLearn), users can see a complete snapshot of brand sentiment in a single interface.

Example brand sentiment dashboard from MonkeyLearn, a leading tool in the market.

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Better Brand Reputation Management

Brand reputation can make or break your ability to win new customers and grow your business. Why? Because B2B decision makers want to trust the brands they buy from—81% say trust is an imperative prerequisite for purchase—and they build that trust by researching your reputation.

Poor feedback from customers and/or unfavorable PR in the media can be a reputation killer in almost no time if you aren’t actively tracking brand sentiment. When you have a brand sentiment analysis strategy in place, you can actively manage your brand reputation and quickly address any issues that may arise.

Greater Responsiveness

Customer needs, preferences, and expectations are always evolving and changing. Brand sentiment analysis allows you to track these changes, identify trends, and stay a step ahead so that your customers feel heard and satisfied with the experience you provide.

Higher Retention and Reduced Churn

Customer retention is a key revenue driver for B2B businesses in every industry, and it’s earning even higher prioritization as SaaS and other subscription-based businesses—which all depend on periodic renewals—grow in number.

Brand sentiment analysis helps you to stay better aligned with your current customers, too, so you can deliver an exceptional experience that drives higher retention and less churn over time.

Competitive Knowledge

Competitive knowledge is critical to understanding your brand perception (i.e. where you stand compared to competitors in the eyes of customers) as well as how to better differentiate in your market. Brand sentiment analysis delivers both high-level, holistic view of your market position and specific comparative insights to help you design a more intentional competitive strategy.

You can also track changes over time in how customers feel about both your brand and competitor brands, capitalizing on opportunities along the way and, as always, quickly resolving issues and closing gaps that arise.

The Bottom Line

There’s no way around it—you need to know how your customers feel about your brand at all times in order to succeed in today’s competitive B2B business landscape.

Brand sentiment analysis and the insights it delivers are the key to unlocking accurate and sophisticated insights that truly connect you to your audiences and allow you to be as responsive as possible to their needs.

And with the right tools in place to execute, you can automate the process so your teams can focus on actually using brand sentiment insights to engage customers and drive growth.

Michael Brenner is a keynote speaker, author and CEO of Marketing Insider Group. Michael has written hundreds of articles on sites such as Forbes, Entrepreneur Magazine, and The Guardian and he speaks at dozens of leadership conferences each year covering topics such as marketing, leadership, technology and business strategy.