Mentions on social media of COVID-19 have begun to drop during the past seven days, according to new data from Talkwalker. For example, there was a nearly 5 percent drop in mentions during the last 24 hours, it said at 5:45pm ET today.
We've not reached information overload, however. Americans are no less concerned about the virus. Instead, the decline in social mentions relates to the nature of the social conversation. Conversations have moved from the virus to related topics, such as healthcare, PPE and distancing, Talkwalker says.
“Once general awareness of the issue reaches a saturation point, the focus of the conversation begins to shift. It's moved toward active prevention, treatment, and adapting personal behaviors,” Talkwalker says.
The company's analysis of conversation clusters allows it to see how information overlaps, intersects and spreads. This helps it to understand what topics are dominating social conversations. It also shows how one topic transitions into another.
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For example, the most-discussed topic related to COVID-19 is government response. It makes up 23 percent of total coronavirus conversations. To Talkwalker, this indicates people are concerned with the federal government's reaction. In addition, the public craves leadership, Talkwalker says.
Not surprisingly, health care recommendations are at the center of conversation clusters. Talkwalker believes this indicates people are listening to medical professionals and epidemiologists. This should be good news for efforts to #flattenthecurve.
On the other hand, Talkwalker finds a great deal of uncertainty about details in healthcare conversations. The back and forth over details, Talkwalker says, shows the importance of clarity. Increasing clarity and consistency in healthcare communications is a point made often during the past month.
A trend many have seen recently is positivity shining through during this dark time. Talkwalker has seen the same theme reflected in social conversations. “People are expressing their solidarity with the affected, including health care workers and those who are furloughed or temporarily unemployed,” it says.
In addition, it’s also seen a rise in social mentions of community efforts to protect the vulnerable. One phrase it has noticed is “special senior shopping hours at grocery stores.”
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