Sony PlayStation 4 Announcement – A Hit or A Miss?
Answering the basic “why’s” and “what’s” in social media can take a variety of approaches. What has worked successfully in a past situation might not provide the same insights in the future, and the overall process can be overwhelming at first.
I should know. As the newest member of the Visible Technologies Insights Team, I had the opportunity of familiarizing myself with the power and versatility of the Visible Intelligence platform by examining one of my personal passions: video games.
On February 20th, Sony held a press conference in New York City to formally announce its newest gaming console, the PlayStation 4. It’s predictable that an event such as this, webcast over dozens of websites would generate an increase in discussion related to Sony and the PlayStation brand. But how great was this increase? Let’s look at some recent data spanning mid-January to mid-February.
We chose this period due to the absence of any special events. The Consumer Electronics Show occurred earlier in January, and the volume of posts is a steady spread between 350-1300 per hour. Now that we know what an average month looks like, we can take a more informed look at the week of February 14-21:
The highlighted area shows three distinct spikes between 6pm and 8pm on February 20, coinciding precisely with the start and end of Sony’s press event, reaching a maximum of 11,422 hourly posts across all social media. That’s an increase of over 1600% on the average weekly volume!
After answering “how much” we can now take a look at the “what”, and Visible Intelligence lets us do just that by taking a look at discussion sentiment during the peak hours.
The vast majority of discussion is Neutral, as is to be expected, but what is truly interesting lies in the marked difference between Positive and Negative sentiment. Ordinarily, they share a balance of 50-50 but something must have occurred during the press event to skew this balance.
Was it passionate fans of competing products charging against the PlayStation 4? Was it a power outage or a tech demo gone wrong?
The answer is simpler: fans were disappointed when Sony failed to show a prototype of the console so many were eager to see.
But some found this lack of a prototype to be a clever marketing move:
That’s the Electronic Entertainment Expo to be held in the late spring. Gamers and home entertainment aficionados will be eagerly awaiting announcements from industry leaders, and we’ll be eagerly watching all the trends in online discussion.
Luca Zanzi is a Business Analyst at Visible Technologies. He is a former researcher in Human-Computer Interaction, and learned the importance of social media as a marketing solution during his experience as a video game journalist. He is fascinated by linguistics, cultural differences in online interactions, and spends his free time roaming fictional worlds.
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