Which brands topped the social media Movers and Shakers list in 2017?

You do not have to be a new, hot technology in order to get consumers talking about your brand. Consumer engagement can happen across all brands -- if you get it right.

Apple Watch: Its time will come

It does seem that new products and those within sectors such as technology that are considered to be the "hottest" are the ones consumers are talking about most.

However, this is more of a myth than fact. New York-based data, analytics, and insights company Engagement Labs has identified the top 10 brands that saw the most improvement with respect to the quality and quantity of consumer conversations.

engagement-labs-movers-and-shakers-eileen-brown-zdnet.jpg
(Image: Engagement Labs)

It looked at 500 consumer brands and ranked brands that gained the most consumer conversation over the course of a year.

It ranked its 'Movers and Shakers' as brands with the biggest point increase in their TotalSocial scores from the year ending in May 2016 to the year ending in May 2017, placing them in the top half of its TotalSocial ranking.

According to its analysis, these Movers and Shakers are not from just one category.

They range from technology and entertainment to insurance companies, travel services, and food brands.

There is a raft of new products, such as the Apple Watch, along with well-established brands such as General Mills.

It does not seem to matter what the category or age of a brand is.

If there is a strong product, good customer case study, or great marketing campaign, there is always an opportunity to gain momentum and improve how much and the way in which consumers talk about a brand.

USAA and Bayer are clear examples that brands do not have to be 'sexy' to earn consumer engagement. USAA is ranked third on the list. It focuses on providing military members and their families with insurance, banking, and investment services.

Its marketing campaigns focus on patriotism and appeal to consumers emotional. This has resulted in a rise in people who were talking offline about their advertising and marketing.

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Life science company Bayer is second on the Movers and Shakers list. Bayer had a record-breaking year and substantially improved its face-to-face conversations and offline sentiment.

Apple Watch is the No. 1 Mover and Shaker. The brand moved up more than 100 places. During the reporting period, it released product innovations including the iPhone 7, Apple Watch Series 2, and Apple AirPods.

Consumers have long been talking and interacting with the brand. It used the Apple Watch launch to generate consumer conversations.

General Mills proved that even the most established brands can rise up the list, One of the catalysts that enhanced its position was its controversial "Bring Back the Bees" campaign.

Ed Keller, CEO of Engagement Labs, said: "In the case of Apple, it is clear that the company really made the most of its product launch for the Apple Watch."

Consumer conversations are a proven driver of critical business outcomes, including sales. Tracking, measuring, and benchmarking the impact of conversations happening around a brand and industry -- both online and offline -- is key to the brands success.

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