Once I learned Python and Pandas I tried to come up with unique and creative ways to use them. The Baller Index is a good example of what I am talking about. Throwing new tools in the mix opened up more possibilities, and one of the best things about Python is that there are allot of tools for it. For this project I learned Beautiful Soup and Selenium. This allowed me send my bots out, across the interwebs, to get the data I was looking for myself before feeding it to Pandas.
I collected data from Twitter, Youtube, Wikipedia, Kaggle, Google News, Tumblr, TechCrunch, Engadget, Forbes, Google Trends, and the independent.co.uk. I parsed this data to get it into a consistent format conducive for manipulating with Pandas data frames. I finally got it into a state where I could create a snapshot of the hottest brands on the internet based on brand saturation ( size ) and trendiness ( heat ).
Internet Brand Heat Check Snapshot
The bigger and bolder the font is, the larger the brands presence. Red brands were the hottest, white brands were hotter than average, and grey was baseline brand hotness. Granted this snapshot is skewed towards high volume internet users. I am sure that if you asked your average Fox News viewer ( note: Fox News did make the list ) if they were more familiar with Pornhub or Coca-Cola it wouldn’t be much of a contest. Frankly I was surprised to see a porn site featured so prominently in the zeitgeist but I guess it is a sign of the times…
While there are many newer, hipper brands highly rated ( Steam, Twtich, etc. ) the majority of brands represented are old and established. My biggest question: “what is y’all’s fascination with Bed Bath and Beyond?”. Amazon is a monster. If I made the font for Amazon as large as it should be it would have broken the design. Google is the other large brand that is slightly undersized in the design. Google’s font size is in relation to the downsized Amazon, but should be larger than it is in relation to the other brands.
Social Media Hotness 2018
As dominant as Facebook is online it is far from hot. In fact it falls slightly below the baseline and could be colored even darker. By contrast Facebook’s other social media platform, Instagram, was just percentage points from being white hot. While I confess to having no insights into the popularity of social media sites beyond this exercise, I must admit I was surprised by how large and hot Instagram remains.
This does bring up an interesting social media related question. Is Reddit a social media site? If so, then it inches out Twitch as the hottest social media site. Is Twitch a social media site? Well, kinda, but not really…
Welcome to the “Post social media era of social media”.
One last note. Being on this list is not necessarily a good thing. Wells Fargo did not make the cut because their users love them. They launched a huge, multi-million dollar marketing campaign to try and restore trust. It would be interesting to see if they are still listed in six months after they burn through those marketing millions.
If fact, I think that is exactly what I will do. I’ll run this code again in a few months and see what changes and what brands rise and fall. For now – if you have any thoughts, questions, or insights please post them in the comments section below. The interaction with commentators on this blog is one of the biggest rewards of publishing it. Of course if you have a data manipulation project of your own you need some help with, holla.