What is Social Media Listening? Social media listening, or social media monitoring, is the process of tracking when your name, company, brand, or a specific topic is mentioned. Listening is only the venue. It is the base. What you really want to look at is the context, perception, and emotional impact of these mentions rather than just what is being said.
The 5 W’s in Social Media Listening – A Waste of Time
These are the data points that most people gather when attempting to do social media listening. The internet is full of articles that summarize the focus of the 5 W’s in social media listening. Even when you are following the 5 W’s, many business owners are left wondering what to do with the information. Listening for the sake of listening is over-rated, and a waste of time.
Instead, the first thing you need to determine is message. Incorporate ‘active listening’ and try to ‘hear’ what the people are really saying:
- What motivated them?
- What is their perspective?
- What is their objective/agenda?
- What is in it for them? What do they get out of it?
- Is it emotionally motivated?
- Is it relationship motivated or driven?
- Is this ‘fed’ by the competition?
- Is this something that can be used to start trending?
- Is this something you can use to benefit your marketing campaign?
- Is this something that can get ‘out of control’?
- Is the conversation taking place in a vacuum?
How to Use Social Listening to Improve Your Business
When marketing, the number one goal should be adding value to your website. The benchmark for adding value is fluid:
- Gather invaluable insights by paying attention to what people are saying about you.
- Monitor key terms relevant to your brand and that can be used in your SEO campaign.
- Identify terms and headlines with viral potential.
- Learn where your potential customers hang out.
- Custom create content for your prospects.
- Learn the problems that prospects need solved.
- Build relationships.
- Identify influencers.
How to Use Social Listening as a Marketing Tool
There are several ways that you can incorporate this marketing tool to strengthen your online presence. The first is to follow your own brand, company, and name. The second is to follow the competition.
Look for recurring questions, topics, and themes. What do people complain about? What ‘customer service’ (i.e. emotional triggers) tactics are strong enough to encourage people to leave positive reviews, or make positive comments.
What type of people ‘talk’ about you on the internet? Once you can identify these people take, the time to determine what influences them and what helps them make decisions. Once you have outlined these, you can use them to create a website that caters to your prospective customers.
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