According to the 80/20 rule of active listenin, sales reps should spend 80% of their time listening and 20% talking in sales conversations. It’s the same with social media marketing. It should. You should monitor sentiment, not only respond to fan complaints and questions. Enter social listening.
Social listening lets you monitor sentiment in real-time. This allows you to pick up brand mentions, good and bad. Being able to identify great opportunities with ambassadors, influencers and other businesses by being ahead of potential PR problems.
This article will discuss the benefits of social listening, and the brands who are doing it well.
What is Social Listening?
Social listening, in a nutshell is the process of monitoring social media for keywords and conversations that are relevant to your brand. These conversations won’t likely be occurring on your pages or posts. This knowledge can be used to improve customer service, content, and even your product.
Social listening is more than just about measuring engagement and likes. Social listening is about more than just tracking likes and engagement stats. It’s also about how people feel about your brand. You should engage in social listening to stay on top of the dialogue around your brand.
We are all busy and it is not worth our time to do something that doesn’t produce positive results.
Let’s take a look at the many benefits of social listening.
1. Enhance customer relations
Customers are less likely to complain about you than they are to your competitors. Customers don’t always leave positive feedback about you. You’re not really hearing what people have to say about your brand if you don’t use social media listening. It’s important to listen.
Problem is, they don’t usually tag you. Social listening lets you pick up comments about your brand and not tag you.
Example: Reddit is my favorite social media listening site. They are funny and have ears and eyes everywhere. You can see their responses to a LinkedIn poll. It shows that they listen to brand mentions even though they weren’t tagged. It has been liked over 2000 times on the one-word comment.
2. Find brand influencers
You probably don’t have the money to buy Kylie Jenner or her company. We know microinfluencer marketing works the best.
Look for influencers who are interested in your product or service. Fans with a large following who are positive about your brand. Social listening allows you to monitor and identify your fans, then approach them for collaboration.
Example: Sarah Lugor, a content creator, posted a video in which she was wearing Starface pimple patches. Although she didn’t tag Starface in the video, Starface used social listening to find the content on TikTok, and then reposted it to their Instagram. Sarah has 233K fans so this interaction was very beneficial for the brand. They gained additional exposure, great user-generated content, and a potential collaborator.
3. Gain an advantage over your competitors
Do your competitors treat their customers well? Are your customers happy with the service or complaining? It doesn’t matter what the outcome, it is important to understand what people are saying and adjust your strategy accordingly. You could also jump in to offer something more or a quick return. Social media is a hot place for brand banter. If your brand is funny or snarky, this is the right platform.
Example: Many companies try to capitalize on the eclipse excitement. MoonPie takes the crown. Instead of launching their own eclipse campaign they just made a tweet shaming another.
4. Be notified in advance of possible PR problems
Your brand is like a boat floating on a still lake. Everything is calm and nothing major happens. One day, you start to notice ripples on the surface. People are now talking about your brand. Over time, those ripples will become more and more disruptive. If they’re not handled correctly, they can cause damage to your boat.
This is how viral PR stories that are negative can go viral. One tweet or post may be all it takes to make the story viral. Social listening gives you advance notification of possible waves that are heading your way, so you can build your team accordingly.
Olive Garden observed a frenzy on social media just before the last US presidential elections. It was accused of supporting a candidate by donating funds. Twitter users used #BoycottOliveGarden as a hashtag to spread the word, making it viral in just a few hours. However, the restaurant was not having it. A short, sharp tweet was enough to cut through all the noise and avoid a PR disaster. Social media listening can be a great tool to prevent trouble from affecting your business.
5. Get ideas for your product development
Your customers are the best at identifying what your customers need. Right? You can listen to your customers’ needs while your product team is busy creating features. This applies equally to content and marketing concepts.
You should be alert for mentions if you are launching a product/service. Even if the information isn’t positive, you need to be aware of what’s being said.
Example: Dell, the computer giant, created “Idea Storm” a community in which customers could share their ideas on how to improve and change the products. After extensive social media listening, Dell created this community. They learned a lot about the products through this listening. A notebook that was open-source caused many negative reactions from developers right after it was launched. The brand was shocked by this and quickly listened to it and fixed the problem. This is just one example of the great community engagement that Dell encourages.
6. Use and create good news stories
Social media is not all bad. You can share many positive news stories about big brands. Social listening can also be a great way to generate news stories. A social media user might tweet about their car breaking down in their area. Your taxi company can pick them up and rescue the day. There are natural Superman moments, but you don’t need to be Superman every time.
Be sure to comment and share if someone praises your brand.
This is an example: Take a look at this LinkedIn post about American Airlines. Social listening could ensure that the amazing story was shared and the heroes flight attendants received a surprise gift. American Airlines – Give these ladies flowers and a raise!
Now you understand how social media listening can help your brand, and why the most successful brands around the globe are focused on it. How do you do social listening? Let’s look at some key points.
Social Listening Essentials
1. Know what you are monitoring
You can save and compile the best searches by understanding what you are listening to.
These are just a few to think about:
(Include common misspellings, and related hashtags. )Industry news, trends (For instance, Contentworks Agency follows trends in finance, fintech, and crypto related to our work. Key people (known directors, shareholders, or the CEO, plus any brand ambassadors). Your slogan and those of competitors (Just Do it #JustDoIt)Products, (e.g., iPhone 10, MacBook Air. )Campaigns and News (if you launched a new product or service or made an announcement)Competitors (Listen for their names, handles and popular hashtags.)
2. Save your responses
Agorapulse allows you to save approved responses. It doesn’t mean that you won’t personalize them but it can help save time in responding to commonly asked questions and known complaints.
Social listening can help you and your team structure and understand how to respond.
3. Use Good Social Listening Tools
Social listening tools are essential to make the process more efficient and less exhausting. To do this job effectively, it is essential to have a sounding board. Agorapulse allows you to easily set keywords, phrases, and hashtags for each channel and brand. Although it sounds tedious, once you have the basics set up, you can save them forever.
You can then add or modify them as needed. You can save them in sets so that you can track campaigns and brand mentions.
Agorapulse then collects any mentions in your dashboard, so you can review them, assign them or respond to them. This eliminates the need to manually search for mentions. All of it is automated. YAY!
The dashboard also has the added benefit of including all mentions in your reports. It’s a great way to impress clients and bosses, as they can see that you are monitoring what’s happening.
To keep track of specific topics, you can also use platform-specific tools such as Twitter Lists. Lists will not notify you. To see them, you would have to be logged in to the platform. There are many alert tools, but most of them don’t go deep enough into social media listening. The tools that do are expensive, so they’re only for large brands with huge budgets.
4. Find out where to listen
Social media is a platform that your target audience and target are talking about. But which platform?
For example, I have found that conversations about beauty brands are more common on Instagram and Facebook. Conversations about fintech are more common on LinkedIn and Twitter, while conversations about fintech occur more frequently on Twitter and LinkedIn. This doesn’t mean you should ignore all platforms. However, you might find that it is worth doing more searches on one or two platforms.
Sometimes, less is more. You can eliminate any saved searches that do not deliver the best results and get rid of any words that return spam or false results. Although content marketing phrases are easy to monitor, they can produce so many results that it is difficult to make any decisions.
5. Keep an eye out for any changes
Social media is fast changing and so are the keywords, trends and conversations. While the hot topic of last week may not have an impact on your brand, it could. Keep up-to-date with trends via platforms such as Twitter. If you find anything that is relevant, add it your trending alerts. Keep an eye out for changes in your industry or region, and make positive contributions.
Social media listening: Don’t do this
Let’s talk about some things that you shouldn’t do with social listening before we end.
Copying strategies You shouldn’t. You shouldn’t interrupt conversations. You might be perceived as intrusive and unwelcome if you interrupt two people discussing your brand. Sometimes you don’t have to say anything. You don’t have to comment if your contribution is going to be of value, whether that’s information, entertainment, or assistance. Bad things. Keep your brand voice in mind when you have to respond. And don’t lose control of your cool. It is not your job to monitor social media. If comments aren’t on your page or channel, it’s not your responsibility.
Start saving time and energy with your social media management. Get a free trial of Agorapulse, which will help you plan, track, measure, and measure your social media efforts.
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