How Social Sentiment Has Transformed for Soylent
Soylent, the three-year-old meal replacement solution startup, came into existence as its founder Rob Reinhart hacked his way beyond meals – tired of shopping for groceries, cooking, and scrubbing the dishes.
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The brand gets its name from the 1966 science fiction novel Make Room! Make Room!, which discusses the impact of overpopulation on the Earth and its resources.
Soylent’s fans on social believe that such products have a potential to feed the world, and opt for the hassle-free, smoothie-like drink, which apparently incorporates all essential aspects of human nutrition.
A photo posted by Starship (@thestarshipbooper) on
At Simply Measured, we have been listening to the conversations around Soylent in the past month. Here’s what we found.
Who Talks About Soylent on Social
Soylent resonates most with consumers between 18-24, especially men.Earlier this month, there was news about Soylent bars making consumers sick. Prior to that, conversations on social about the brand were mainly about Soylent being the future of food, and they primarily had positive sentiment attached to them. They were driven by discussions about Soylent products being easy to use and healthy, and there was excitement for their new coffee-flavored drink, Coffiest.
— ALTfood (@ALTfood) September 22, 2016
ordered another 48 bottles of Soylent & Coffiest. This stuff is actually pretty decent & convenient as heck.
— gendohime@ToCS2 (@gendohime) October 3, 2016
While the majority of sentiment was positive for Soylent before the news about their bars making people sick broke, mentions about some of their products being moldy at times and Soylent not being real food contributed to negative chatter.
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This news about Soylent making people violently ill transformed the conversations about the product on social media. The bars dominated over 50% of the conversations in weeks after the news broke, as compared to just 7% before.
Reports of people falling sick and even being hospitalized after consuming Soylent bars forced the brand to recall the new product. This news was shared extensively on social, spiking the volume of mentions that jumped over 200% in the two weeks after the news spread.
Soylent Tells Everyone to Throw Out Food Bars After Customers Fall Violently Ill: Soylent still doesn’t know … https://t.co/z6buW0ibpK
— mmdghostrider (@mmdghostrider) October 12, 2016
How Brand Sentiment Has Evolved
This news has resulted in high negativity for the product. It has not only highlighted the issue with Soylent bars, but has also fueled conversations about the product being made of GMO ingredients, a fact that Soylent has publicly accepted, and is proud of.
— Sarah Willis (@yoginicuisine) October 12, 2016
Soylent is still investigating the reasons behind the mysterious cases of illness amongst its bars consumers. We will be listening in to how these conversations about Soylent shape up, and we’ll post updates right here on our Simply Measured blog.
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I'm a Social Media Analyst at Simply Measured. I love food, music, movies, and long walks. Let's talk about social media data!