A study done by researchers at Emerson College has found a correlation between the revenues that a movie garners and the sentiments being expressed about the particular movie on Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR). The results of the study were provided to TheWrap.
These findings are the work of the latest study by Owen Eagan, who works at Emerson College’s Department of Communication Studies. Eagan had previously conducted another study in which the results showed that word of mouth, whether negative or positive, could affect the revenues of a movie. In his most recent study, Eagan employs activity on Twitter as the metric that replaces word of mouth. The results show that the same truths apply in both cases.
In the study which had been part of a research course at the School of Communication, a sample of 12,000 tweets was manually coded. The sample was drawn from a collection of 800,000 tweets that bore hashtags that had something to do with 17 films that were released in the fall of last year. To avoid skewed results, the study employed a criterion of only choosing wide releases and avoiding movies with holiday themes.
The average weekly percentage change in box office revenue was then compared with the average weekly sentiments from Twitter and a strong correlation was noted.
“The correlation analysis between tweet sentiments and revenue found an r value of .75, which indicates a strong relationship since a correlation coefficient of .5 is considered high, .3 is considered medium and .1 is considered low,” a statement accompanying the research findings said.
Despite the study confirming the hypothesis that Eagan held, some outliers were observed. This included Bleed for This, a boxing movie which had an approval rating of 98 percent on Twitter but still experienced a weekly average decline in box office revenue of 69 percent. Miss Sloane was also another outlier after its main hashtag was taken over by pro-guns activists who didn’t appreciate the message in the film as well as Hollywood’s liberal standards.
In Tuesday’s trading session, Twitter Inc fell by 1.62 percent to close the day at $16.96.