What D.C. Tourists Are Talking About Online This Month — And Why It Matters for Your Brand

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Michiko Morales

It’s spring in the capital: the cherry trees have bloomed, and the museums are packed with schoolchildren and their parents, eager to get a first-hand glimpse of American history. Sitting on a crowded subway car with many children and parents in matching sweatshirts got us thinking–do these kids Tweet yet? Or, better yet, do their parents? Let’s find out using a little social media monitoring…

Using social media monitoring tool Social Radar, we conducted a quick breakdown of social media chatter about Washington, D.C. that took place in the last few weeks.

Social media monitoring is increasingly used to understand consumer behavior and needs. Marketers can use it to gauge the success of a campaign and measure customer satisfaction. Even the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority uses its Twitter account to field complaints or concerns. A recent study by SHARE says about 52 percent of its participants are currently monitoring their brand on social media and that 60 percent of businesses plan to increase their social media monitoring in the next two years.

Our search found that with an average of 6,326 posts per day over the past 30 days, spring in Washington, D.C. was mentioned every 13 seconds. As you can see in the word cloud below, some of the most popular words mentioned in these posts were national, cherry, and blossom with celebration and festival close behind. Clearly people were very excited about the National Cherry Blossom Festival this year. With parades, art exhibits, auctions and an online photo contest, the blossoms have generated a big buzz around Washington, D.C. this month.

On average, women and men created almost the same amount of buzz with women at 56% and men, 44% – you can see how it fluctuated over the past month.

While Twitter is a great place to share how much you love the spring weather, most of the conversations about D.C.’s fantastic spring atmosphere were actually posted on blogs – 76% of those conversations to be exact, according to this pie chart.

That means residents and visitors were taking the time to enjoy and share their experiences in D.C. instead of a quick little shout-out. March 21, 2012 had the most mentions of spring in D.C., which is the day after the Cherry Blossom Festival officially started.

Washington, D.C. tours is mentioned 1,107 times per day on average, which isn’t surprising since April is the single most popular month to visit the capital and ranked the top museum destination in the world.  If you’re a business in D.C., that means April brings tons of opportunities to reach out to new customers – even if they’re one-time visitors – who may also become online brand ambassadors following a  positive experience.

A lot of the conversations revolve around planning a trip to D.C. with fun creative ideas like this one, “29 Free Things to do in Washington, DC.”

So what does this mean for you and your brand? Being aware of what people are talking about allows you to become a part of that conversation, to share relevant information, and to create a community around your brand through social media.

So if you’re in the area, let us know how your company uses social media monitoring!

From the Blog

Leah Nurik