‘Awesome’ beats ‘perfect’

We know all reviews aren’t created equal.

But a 5-star rating can make all the difference between a successful product and one that never takes off.

New research from the University of Massachusetts Boston discovered that emotional reactions in the written text are a much better predictor of business success than star ratings.

The researchers write:

Emotionality is different from valence—whether a feeling is positive or negative—and from extremity—how positive or negative the feeling is. Rather, it’s the extent to which a reaction is rooted in emotion. “‘Awesome’ is a very positive word that also conveys a lot emotion with it,” Rucker explains. “‘Perfect’ is also a very positive word, but it doesn’t have a lot of emotionality.” The same goes for “fantastic” as compared with “perfect,” or “terrible” as compared with “dumb.”

And emotionality also applied to movie reviews and how they performed at the box office.