3 ways to start listening to social media
Do you remember the last time you created new content for your organization's social media channels? How about the last time you followed what the customers are talking about you and what kind of campaigns your competitors post on social media? If you can't answer the first question, read our tips on how to create a content calendar. If you can't answer the second one, read on.
Utilizing social media in communications and marketing is already familiar to businesses. Most companies acknowledge that actively producing content in social media channels helps to make customers committed and satisfied. However, one thing that is completely forgotten in many organizations is social media listening.
What is social media listening?
Social media monitoring and social media listening are often thought to be synonyms, even though they have slightly different meanings. Social media monitoring means following keywords and discussions on social media. Social media listening, in turn, is a more profound understanding and learning about the discussions on social media. It's more about meeting the customers' needs, recognizing trends, measuring the effectiveness of your communications and learning from the competition.
Social media monitoring can exist without social media listening but listening cannot exist without monitoring. That is why these two concepts are so strongly intertwined. In this article we will go through three useful hints on how to start with social media listening.
1. Find out what customers think of you
It's a good idea to start social media listening by finding out what your current and potential customers think of you. Your customers are probably talking about you and your services without targeting their messages to you. Therefore, take advantage of search engines, as well as a social media monitoring service to find out in which channels and discussions your organization and brand are mentioned.
After this, pay attention to the tone of the discussion. What are the aspects that make the customers satisfied? How about the aspects they are not happy with? By following the discussion related to your brand you get feedback in real time and can quickly react to customers' comments.
Was your company not present in social media discussions? This is usually a sign of people not knowing enough about your operations. Be active in making your company recognizable and start marketing to both the press and the public.
2. Follow what is talked about around you
Social media listening should not be limited to your own operations. By paying attention to the buzz in your industry, you stay on top of trends and will be able to recognize the so-called silent signals that are especially helpful in product development and improving services.
Follow the important hashtags and discussion groups of your industry. Find out which channels and groups the gurus and the opinion leaders of your industry follow and what terminology they use in their conversations. Also, search for the industry-specific keywords in discussion boards and blogs.
Do your customers have a problem they are trying to solve and you could bring a solution to? Find out in which channels you could bring forth your know-how.
Once you have found out where your colleagues and customers are having their discussions and what they discuss, just go out there and join the conversation. Ask, share your opinion and provide useful tips.
Also, follow whether your activities yield good results. You have boosted active discussions with the people, but have they subscribed to your newsletter or contacted you? Are you mentioned in discussions more often? If the answer is no, keep on discussing.
3. Monitor your competition
After you know what your customers discuss and what they think of you, focus your attention on the competition. Follow what customers are talking about your competitors' products and how these rivals are taking part in social media discussion. Also pay attention to what kind of content your competitors produce and how the public reacts to it.
It's also good to learn from your competititors. Collect tips regarding discussions and content production.
Always try to perform better than your competitors. Be active and produce genuinely gripping content to social media channels. If your rivals are not interested in taking part in your industry-related conversations, you have a good opportunity to show your own expertise and stay ahead of the competition.
Where to get help for social media listening?
Simultaneously following your own brand, customers and competitors on several social media channels can be a challenging task. Media monitoring tool LianaMonitor collects all discussions on social media with keywords and hashtags. With a daily analysis, you get a clear picture of your visibility and you are always aware of what is talked about on social media.