IBM’s Social Sentiment Index Crowns Andy Murray & Serena Williams as Social Champions

Social Media Manager and Webmaster, Accessibility, IBM

According to fans on Twitter, Wimbledon women's champion, Serena Williams, and men's finalist, Andy Murray, have been crowned the most popular social players from the 2012 Wimbledon Championships, as IBM’s Social Sentiment Index unearthed a range of unexpected insights from more than 1,270,000 public tweets.

Joining the conversation online – for Wimbledon or any large sporting or social event – is now a huge part of the fan experience, as well as the desire to consume more information and statistics and get closer to the game, players or event (read more about IBM SlamTracker).

From a business perspective, measuring social media commentary adds a valuable new dimension to understand different constituencies, learn what fans like or, more importantly, dislike allows organizations to change/enhance products and experiences that much faster, as well respond directly to consumers.

IBM Social Analytics software uncovered a range of unexpected insights from Wimbledon that confirms the “chatter matters.” The findings included:

·  Murray is the most popular men's player with the highest percentage of positive tweets. Williams secured the highest percentage of upbeat tweets among female players (overtaking Agnieszka Radwanska who led before the women’s final match).

·  Murray and Williams top tweet rankings eclipsed their spots in the official tournament seedings, where they ranked fourth and fourth, respectively.

·  British fans were behind Murray with 87 percent of positive tweets about him coming from outside of his homeland of Scotland throughout the UK. 

·  The top three unexpected talking points on Twitter that related to Wimbledon 2012 were:

o    Late running matches

o    “Big serving” players dominating The Championships

o    Major upsets as top players were knocked out unexpectedly

·  There was a strong correlation between the words “hawk” and “steal” in tweets, which proved to be indicative of the infamous kidnapping of Rufus, the Club’s pigeon-patrolling hawk.

·  Mentions of strawberries peaked on the July 2, 2012, due to a strawberry giveaway much to fans’ delight (strawberries and cream is a Wimbledon favorite).

The IBM Social Sentiment Index, which has also been used to measure travel and shopping plans, Academy Awards, Super Bowl and 2011 World Series, uses advanced analytics and natural language processing technologies that can be applied to analyze big data (in this case, large volumes of social media data) in order to assess public opinions.

The Index can identify and measure positive, negative and neutral sentiments shared in public forums such as Twitter, blogs, message boards and other social media, and provide quick and unexpected insights into consumer conversations about issues, products and services.

Representing a new form of market research, social sentiment analysis offers organizations - from sports and film to retailing and health care – new insights that can help them better understand and respond to consumer trends.

Learn more about how IBM Smarter Analytics solutions extract insights from enterprise data and all the big data that is continuously flowing in from a variety of new sources.