Here’s a Month-by-Month Look at the Most Engaging Brand Content of 2015

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Social media analytics company Unmetric has compiled a list called "Awesome Things Brands Did in 2015," which looks at social campaigns throughout the year that performed especially well in terms of engagement.

Looking at the year’s biggest social successes shows “a continued trend for brands embracing content marketing—i.e., content that is meant to tell a story, convey an idea, project a brand's values or simply entertain without any overt sales/product message,” Unmetric CEO and co-founder Lux Narayan told Adweek. He cited Thai Life Insurance’s “Garbage Man” from January (see below) and Android’s “Friends Furever” (one of Adweek’s 10 best ads of 2015) from February as examples.

Unmetric looks at data from Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to determine an engagement score of zero to 1,000. The engagement score is a weighted measurement based on the company’s belief that certain metrics have more value for brands than others—a share is more valuable than a like, for instance, a retweet more valuable than a favorite.

The company analyzes brand content using a combination of algorithms for quantitative data, and human insights for qualitative data. Because algorithms can’t always identify a brand campaign or track one across social channels, Unmetric has a team dedicated to tagging and verifying whether something is indeed a campaign.

“Each year, the team uses this data and insights to spotlight several campaigns every month that stood out in terms of audience engagement and overall media buzz,” Narayan said. “This year, we saw a marked increase in brand videos, and marketers should be looking closely at the elements of successful videos as the format continues to rise in popularity."

Unmetric uses a slightly different method for measuring a campaign’s success on YouTube. There is no engagement score. Instead, likes and how quickly a video accumulates them are important factors—if a video ramps up unusually fast, the company’s outlier-detecting algorithm picks that up. For top channels, Unmetric primarily looks at views.

Here’s a month-by-month breakdown of brand posts Unmetric tracked that achieved engagement scores of 1,000 or otherwise met its standards for awesomeness in 2015:

@ejwander Erik Wander is the digital features editor at Adweek where he oversees Adweek's Story Desk.