McDonald's and KFC are the top two social media performers among restaurant chains, according to a report from the Sprinklr social media management platform.
The Social Business Audit report ranks social media performance across multiple metrics, using data from Sprinklr's Social Business Index.
The top three restaurant brands performed strongly on every metric studied during a 30-day period ending Sept. 30, including engagement with followers, total numbers of impressions and earned impressions, active audience and others.
The other brands in the top 25, starting with No. 4 (in order), were: Applebee's, Burger King, Starbucks, Subway, Domino's, Wendy's, Dunkin' Donuts, 7-Eleven, Buffalo Wild Wings, Taco Bell, Dairy Queen, Olive Garden, Outback Steakhouse, Krispy Kreme, Wingstop, Baskin-Robbins, Chick-fil-A, Hooters, Red Lobster, Morton's Steakhouse, Whataburger and Hard Rock Cafe.
McDonald's had the largest number of followers (69.49 million) and logged the largest number of posts during the study period (7,748). It also had the largest active audience (533,128), highest impressions (104.8 million), earned impressions (441.82 million) and engagement (709,382) numbers.
KFC, with 36.24 million followers, logged 3,937 posts and had an active audience of 402,078; 86.05 million impressions; 422.92 million earned impressions; and 694,246 engagement during the study period.
However, the data also confirm what social marketers know by now: When it comes to content, effectiveness often bests frequency. Higher numbers of posts by a brand don't necessarily equate with higher numbers of followers, engagement, or even impressions. As just one example, No. 3 Pizza Hut (29.1 million followers) made 2,205 posts during the tracking period and yielded engagement of 285,717, versus No. 8 Domino's' (28.3 million followers) lower engagement (167,273) for nearly double the number of posts (4,004).
On the other hand, Domino's' earned impressions (277.69 million) were close to Pizza Hut's (279.73 million), and Domino's' impressions were actually higher: 55.8 million, versus Pizza Hut's 51.92 million.
Sprinklr defined engagement as a weighted composite of the total number of likes, comments, favorites and retweets that followers had with a piece of branded content. Active audience was defined as number of followers that engage with brands by taking small actions such as likes or favorites.
The full report, including all metrics definitions, can be downloaded free from Sprinklr's site.