New York Times READ

UK Christmas Winners and Losers: How Did Social Contribute?

Published by Steve Thomson January 16, 2018

January brings the UK cold weather, flu, and intense focus on which retailers ‘won’ and ‘lost’ in terms of Christmas trading.

We know that TotalSocial® measures – volume and sentiment of offline and online consumer conversation – and these an impact on overall sales. But for retail, the relationships are invariably more complex.

Take the issue of discounting, for example. Shoppers love discounts, and talk about them a lot, in both online and offline conversation. So a troubled retailer, desperately cutting prices to boost flagging sales, might be getting strong TotalSocial scores, but revenues may be flat because of all those discounts.

Another key factor is that brands can rarely become overnight successes, even if they have developed a strong Christmas campaign and offer. Sure, your TotalSocial scores might jump up in November and December, but if the preceding six months’ conversations have been lacklustre, it may be hard to shift negative perceptions.

Hence in analysing how social contributes to retail performance, it pays to dig a little deeper – and look at social performance more broadly. Here’s our TotalSocial diagnosis on some of the big UK retail brands this season:


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