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And the Winner Is… a Black Friday Recap

If you didn’t wake up at 5:00 am this past Friday to shop, chances are you know someone who did or your feeds and timelines were bombarded with DON’T MISS OUT or BEST SALE OF THE YEAR, retail ads.

Black Friday was the unofficial start to the holiday shopping season but according to Dallas Morning News, consumers seem to have lost their shopping spirit.
Compared to last year, spending in stores fell 10 percent on Thanksgiving and Black Friday. Even though sales declined, we saw an abundance of social media content flooding around the brands that we tracked in our blog, Which Retailers Are Poised to Win Black Friday? After looking at Walmart, Target, Kohl’s, Macy’s, Best Buy and Toys “R” Us, here are some overview insights that our analytics report provided us.

  • Kohl’s was the top influencer among all six brands
  • Majority of consumers were posting about the brands during mid-day (38%)
  • The top emoji between all brands was the “Tears of Joy” emoji smiley – also, interestingly named ‘Word of the Year’  by Oxford Dictionaries.
  • The top hashtag after #BlackFriday was #KohlsSweepstakes, and it was predominantly used by 70% females

Now, a closer look into each brand specifically. Who were the social media winners of Black Friday?


Kohl’s not only generated the most user-generated content with 29.5K tweets in total, but had more females talking about their brand than any other (70%). Again, it looks like Kohl’s was able to stir up the most content through their #KohlsSweepstakes retweet giveaway on Twitter. While Kohl’s dropped in the ranks, their Black Friday lead-up promo helped them beat Target and Best Buy.



Walmart stole the show when it came toZPoints® and the amount of influence that each tweet had. Our Topic Leaderboard that actively showed who led the conversations throughout Black Friday revealed that Walmart consumers were generating the most influential tweets with a ZPoints® score of 77.9K. However, they performed pretty negatively in other aspects.

Not only did we want to track how the brands were doing, but we also set up workflows to track trending topics around the event as well such as lines, deals, staff, etc.

When it came down to the topic of fighting, Walmart seemed to be causing the most commotion. The name and Twitter handle were found as the most commonly used words among the topic.

Walmart 1 Walmart 2

Democratic Presidential candidate, Bernie Sanders, took advantage of the #BlackFriday trending topic and didn’t give Walmart the best reputation either. Sanders jumped on the hashtag to speak negatively about Walmart and their low paying workers and the net worth of the six heirs.

Bernie Sanders 1


While digging through the Links feature of our platform, I found that the top shared URL was a screen shot of a video from a Target located in Westminster, Maryland. Last year, Target employee Scott Simms stood on top of a conveyor belt and shouted words of encouragement to his fellow employees, modeling his speech after movies like ‘300’ and ‘Braveheart.’

Even though this video was taken last Black Friday, it still packed a mean punch and landed with 823 link shares throughout the top brands on this holiday.

Something that I found outside of our platform was Target’s innovative way to promote their brand on Snap Chat. They created various themed Snap Chat filters throughout Thanksgiving and Black Friday that were available throughout the two day period and some filters only activated inside Target’s doors.



Although Macy’s only pulled in 1.7K tweets on Black Friday, their social impressions were through the roof! The brand was able to collect a social impressions total of 93.3 million and after taking a closer look, they might have to thank a certain celebrity for all the love on Twitter.

Sean Combs, aka P. Diddy or Puff Daddy, promoted his clothing line, Sean John, on Twitter while encouraging consumers to buy his products while mentioning @Macy’s. After finding him at the top of the Macy’s influencer list, it’s no surprise that Macy’s name was seen the most with Diddy’s 10.7 million followers behind him.

P Diddy

Toys “R” Us

Toys “R” Us was the brand that generated the least amount of activity on Black Friday with only 1.3K tweets all together. However, one famous celebrity seemed to steal the show from all of those Mommy Bloggers from our previous blog. Adam Levine from Maroon 5 was at the top of the list for Celebrity Associations for Toys “R” Us when the band promoted his guitar for sale across all retail stores.


Best Buy

Even though electronics are known to be the first the fly off the shelves, Best Buy didn’t perform as well on Twitter. The brand pulled in 49.8K tweets throughout the holiday and did not perform as well as the others.

However, quality seems to trump quantity in this instance. When looking into Best Buy’s emoji cloud, the blue heart emoji was the most popular among consumers. It was used 163 times while promoting Meghan Trainor’s new album, TITLE, for sale at the retail store. Looks like fans were pretty excited about Trainor’s Black Friday sale!

Best Buy

Now that the all of the pandemonium that Black Friday brings has come to an end, it looks like each brand did their share of promoting themselves on social, but some stood out more than the rest. Target revealed their creativity by creating unique Snap Chat filters, Walmart generated the most influential activity but Kohl’s shined throughout the entire week with their #KohlsSweepstakes that unsurprisingly produced the most activity on Black Friday.

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