Take a look at our 5 tips to get the most from social media listening and drive results
Social media listening – the tracking of data from digital conversations to find new opportunities, create actionable insights and output targeted, relevant content for your audience.
Social media has been around long enough now that we know it’s not just for pushing messages; the fastest way to turn your audience off is to just broadcast and not listen. Leveraging social in the right way is about understanding your target audience’s needs, desires and pain-points and creating meaningful conversations and content that resonates with them on a personal level. Through social media listening you can extract value from those conversations and apply intelligent, data driven insights to your overall marketing strategy.
The depth at which we can analyse the social web means businesses can now draw actionable insights that fuel financial return. Social media listening goes a long way beyond Facebook dashboards and tracking mentions and retweets. If you’re just compiling data and gathering information about what’s already happened, you’re probably not going far enough to get the results you crave.
Want to know more about why you should start really listening to social media instead of just monitoring it? Our experts could talk about the insights you can glean from social media until the cows come home, but we’ve narrowed it down to these five compelling reasons to get involved.
- Discover popular, emerging conversations and trends
It goes without saying that social media listening can enable you to discover the conversations that are happening about, and around your brand. Things get really exciting when you unearth what happens beyond that. Source granular data about what your business ecosystem, your customers, business partners, constituencies, employees and competitors have to say, then collaborate with colleagues and stakeholders to formulate how to engage market segments and piggyback emerging trends.
Get an insider’s view about the issues that are about to hit before they do, and get your action plan in place. Make sure your brand is on top of trends, and feed that information and sentiment back into the business to develop your products and offers.
- Identify influencers to reach new audiences
The I-word was the big thing in marketing last year, and that’s not set to stall any time soon. Social media listening not only lets you see what people are talking about, it will also aid you in identifying who is talking about your brand and your industry. Who gets the most engagement for this topic? Who do people really listen to and trust?
Influencer marketing grew by a staggering 198% last year. Using branded searches along with exploring Facebook, Twitter and Instagram from within a social media listening platform enables you to identify the right influencers who not only talk about your brand, but who affect and impact your target audience’s decisions.
From there you’ll be able to ascertain how powerful their influence is with key measures of post likes, number of comments etc. Further segmenting by industry, reach and the specific influencer marketing goals, brands can use social media intelligence platforms to identify influencers who are a great match for them.
Image Source Klear.com - State of Influencer Marketing
- Create content that resonates with your audience
By listening to both your prospects and customers in an arena where they speak freely - be it social media, websites, blogs, forums etc - you will also get unique insights into what matters to them. These days, any pains we experience or frustrations we deal with will usually make their way onto social media. Supplying social media listening data and insights to your content creators, is a collaboration that ensures any content you put out hits the bullseye.
Be sure to share that content on social, too, and tag the influencers you identified earlier, then use social listening to see what they think. Share the data and insights you gather with the wider business to help educate all departments about the profile of the company's audience and how to approach them in an engaging way.
- Target your social selling and generate leads
Just as consumers express their frustrations on social media, they also express their joys and great experiences. Using social media listening, you can track when your brand or products are part of that experience. Be sure to generate leads by getting in touch with those who are talking about you - or generate leads by talking to those who are frustrated with your competitors.
Finding posts like these provide opportunities that already have a need and help you gather invaluable market research on where your competition has frailties. Engage by asking what the shortcomings are of their current provider and then abate their concerns by conveying the added value of your offering and where it differs from the competitor’s in question.
Website hosting service ChemiCloud is great at this. They monitor frustrations and those seeking advice, and they make sure they get heard.
- Improve customer care
Companies have been using social media for customer service for years and years. The difference between a pure customer service play, and using social media listening to improve customer care, is that you can ‘go the extra mile’ for your customers. 67% of customers use social media for customer care, posting questions, opinions, recommendations and complaints on the channel that they trust the most.
Now, imagine the power of getting your hands on all of that data. As a marketer, you can use the words and phrases that your audience itself uses, meaning you can create content that will resonate further with them. As a customer service operative, you can provide real help and advice rather than sales messages or apologies. And then you can track that social data to see the impact on brand sentiment.
Social media listening, and social insights, can be the difference between a few people talking about your brand online, and a truly joined-up omnichannel strategy driven by valuable insights.