Social (black) Friday

For me, as for most foreigners I guess, Thanksgiving Day is something I am definitely not familiar with. I only know that is something about family reunion, turkey and pumpkin pie. On the other hand, before moving in to the US, I had no idea about the existence of “Black Friday”. However, since businesses and marketing are things that I’m highly attracted to, I thought it could be interesting to see what happened in social media on that crazy shopping day.

According to the Wall Street Journal Blog retailers seemed to change their strategy this year. Social media was not used as a direct sale channel, but as an instrument to motivate their followers/ fans to visit their stores and onto ecommerce sites.

If we take a look at the numbers of this last Black Friday on the Internet, we will find that over the last two weeks, mentions of Black Friday have hit well over 6 million total posts. Twitter accounts for 86% of that conversation, Facebook 8.5%, and Blogs at 2%.  That’s why the power of Social Media can’t be underestimated.

The Salesforce Marketing Cloud´s Blog published some interesting data about Black Friday about volume and demographics. What’s most interesting however, was the sentiment analysis they run. They found that negative posts were close at 48% of the total. The word “hate” featured prominently in the negative side’s top conversation words. Taking a look of some of the negative comments, I would say that this responds to the controversial decision of several retailers to open their gates on the same night of Thanksgiving, “making employees work that night”. Companies like Target, Kmart and Toys R us took that decision, with the consequent anger of some people on their Facebook walls.

In summary,Social Media seems to have become an important tool for companies to attract their customer to buy on Black Friday, which appears to be in the right path, considering building lasting relationships with them instead of only redeem a few coupons.


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