Why Social Media Listening is Key to Your Marketing Strategy
The most significant marketing change in the past decade was brought about by social media. Before Facebook or Twitter, brands couldn’t dream of building such close connections with their audiences or having real-time conversations with their customers on a global scale.
In order to leverage your presence on social networks, build a strong brand and effectively manage your social media accounts, you'll need to do some social listening. Here are 8 good reasons why your marketing team should be monitoring your brand on social media right now.
1. Building a community
Social listening tools are available to businesses of all sizes. They enable you to track conversations and detect buyers, leads and key influencers in your industry. All this knowledge will help you to interact with customers in a way that builds a positive image of your brand and fosters better relationships, which eventually form a tight community of loyal followers or even brand evangelists.
2. Understanding consumer behavior
Brands that pay close attention to their consumer base will easily understand the main problems, motivations and issues customers might have with their products or services. This in turn helps them to come up with more efficient customer service.
Brands can identify common problems and provide specific solutions, create a comprehensive knowledge page based on questions frequently asked by consumers and integrate those insights with CRM to benefit from some cost savings.
3. Powerful marketing analytics
Marketers listening closely to social media will be able to uncover what is being said about a brand, who is saying it, on which platforms, how often and who the main influencers are. Keeping tabs on what's happening in their audience, marketers will improve their content marketing by leveraging topic insights in such a way as to come up with optimized content, SEO and PPC strategies.
4. Social media management
Most social listening tools feature smart functionalities to help brands take good care of their social channels. Many different tools (Hootsuite, PostPlanner and Buffer to name just a few) allow a business to manage and monitor multiple networks and profiles on a single dashboard, helping their users execute campaigns across various channels and instantly measure their results.
5. Improved agility
When it comes to social media, timing is everything. A recent study from Lithium Technologies showed that 53% of consumers who tweet a brand expect a response within an hour. Things get even more extreme when the tweet in question is a complaint – the figure above rises to 72%!
Time of reaction is also important for building a positive brand image. Finding that smart window of opportunity is a strategy proposed by Jay Baer, who claims most people are in meetings during the day which are usually scheduled on the hour or half-hour. If that's your audience, you should try to post your content just before or right after this key hour.
6. Developing a better product
By intelligent listening in social media, you can uncover various problems consumers experience when using your product and then address them when releasing a corrected version. Monitoring the reviews of your product, you'll gain additional input and lots of ideas on how to improve it to better suit the preferences and expectations of your target audience.
7. Boosting sales
Social listening is also important for your sales department – you can uncover conversations that indicate someone's intent to purchase your product, as well as monitor what your competitors are up to in their social media feeds. Integrating CRM with those insights, you'll be able to effectively improve your ROI.
8. Social recruiting
Another area of your business that can benefit from insights gained through close monitoring of social media is human resources. Your recruiters can access new talent pools, uncover key experts and influencers, build your employer brand and have their eyes open to problems that might impact employee happiness.
All in all, social listening is an activity that is rich with insights relevant to every area of your business. By keeping tabs on what's being said about your brand, you can improve your interactions and build a positive image throughout the web.
About the Author:
Monique Craig is an Australian blogger and marketing specialist who works for Oneflare, an online marketplace which connects customers with local service providers.