Which Brands Boomed and Which Ones Busted in Social Media This Year?

Fiat scores while American Airlines nosedives

Headshot of Lauren Johnson

Between constant tweaks to Facebook's algorithm, changes to Twitter and the rise of Instagram, social media has certainly kept marketers on their toes this year.

A new look into data compiled from 35,000 brands and 26 industries across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn and Google+ from Sprinklr gives an inside look into how brands worked multiple social platforms this year.

Sprinklr's data measures marketers' own social activity in addition to anything that people are saying about the brand. The software cranks out a score for each brand based on 11 different metrics including sentiment, engagement and responsiveness.

Sprinklr measured brands' scores in the first quarter of the year compared to the fourth quarter (although it should be noted that fourth-quarter data is not complete since it is not the end of the time period yet). The data was then split into two groups: booms and busts—depending on how much a score increased or decreased during the year.

Fiat took the No. 1 spot on the boom list by using social media to push into markets like the U.S. over the past few years

"As their brand is entering this market, you see through social their brand health increasing," said Brian Kotlyar, avp of demand generation at Sprinklr.

The airline industry also made for some interesting trends this year. While Turkish Airlines made the No. 3 spot on the boom list, American Airlines was No. 1 on the bust list.

Sprinklr’s data found that between the two quarters, Turkish Airlines' social score increased by 731.5 points while American Airlines' dipped a negative 1,079.4 points. Metrics like engagement, number of posts, satisfaction and passion were used to measure the brands' social success.

During the first quarter, American Airlines had a satisfaction score of 713, more than double Turkish Airlines' 313. Satisfaction was again measured in the fourth quarter, with American Airlines netting a score of 524 (a 26 percent dip). Meanwhile, Turkish Airlines increased its satisfaction score by 24 percent to 313 points in the fourth quarter.

"It's interesting to me that you see these two brands confronted with extremely similar challenges, and one is clearly figuring out how to use social to elevate the brand and the other is struggling to make that leap," Kotlyar said.

In terms of engagement—which measures how people react to brand posts—American Airlines raked in an impressive 630 point score during the first quarter compared to Turkish Airlines’ 45 point score. But when engagement was measured again later this year, American Airlines' score decreased 63 percent to 233 points. Turkish Airlines’ score increased to 142 points during the same time period, representing a 215 percent increase.

A rep for American Airlines said that the brand has incresaed its Facebook fans by 52 percent this year while its Instagram followers have doubled. On Twitter, the brand is close to hitting one million followers.

"American Airlines is well respected by its industry peers and those who truly understand what it takes to successfully position a brand across a variety of social media platforms. Out of hundreds of aviation companies, we consistently rank in the Top 5 on Twitter and we're a Top 25 brand on Facebook," said the rep.

Sprinklr said neither Turkish Airlines nor American Airlines is a client (Turkish Airlines signed a deal with Sprinklr in June 2013 but says that the partnership ended on May 31). Sprinklr reps declined to discuss their relationship with other brands on the list.

Kotylar also pointed out that brands must work harder to stand out because of the many tweaks and changes to social algorithms in the past year. For example, Time Out Group—which operates entertainment and news sites for 75 cities—took the No. 2 spot on the boom list this year, in part because of Facebook's shift to reward publishers that routinely post content to their pages.

Check out the full list of this year's winners and losers on social media in the infographic below.

@laurenjohnson lauren.johnson@adweek.com Lauren Johnson is a senior technology editor for Adweek, where she specializes in covering mobile, social platforms and emerging tech.