Nearly 60 percent of the world’s total population are active Internet users. It is no wonder why social media users have passed the 3.8 billion mark, according to the latest trends.
What is even more surprising is that the number of social media network inquiries has increased by 77 percent over the past years. In other words, more people are now relying on social media to obtain information rather than on search engines.
There is no issue with that at all. It is just that several online businesses can’t leverage their social media monitoring very well. If you happen to be one of them, you are in the right place.
Here are some effective ways to improve social media monitoring.
1. Track Brand Mentions
Brand mentions are the best way to monitor your SEO and marketing’s success. “Mentions” take place when a brand is mentioned on social media, online publication, or anywhere on the web.
They are considered as an “informative metric” that can aid online businesses in improving their brand awareness and popularity.
One of the ways to make your brand popular in no time is by promoting a positive feedback loop. When a company’s name, service, or product is tagged or linked on social media (i.e., brand mention), it will be factored into the brand’s organic search value.
From there, it will turn into positive SEO leads that can prompt increased visibility, which, in turn, trigger more mentions and then again increase SEO value, and the cycle goes on.
A heavy volume of brand mentions isn’t automatically caused by a successful outreach campaign. It can also indicate a potential crisis.
Hence, tracking all your brand mentions with and without links is a must, especially when you want to obtain a more holistic view of your brand’s social media positioning.
Here are some ways on how to monitor media mentions:
- Use tools like Google Alerts, Awario, Social Mention, Mention, Hootsuite, or Talkwalker Alerts
- Lookup your brand, including misspellings, abbreviations, or common alternates in all languages
- Check social posts that mention your brand, including those without the # or @ operators
- Search for key phrases, mottos, or slogans that are usually employed in your marketing and to your market niche as a whole
- Search for the names of management, owners, popular employees, and other key staff, including misspellings, abbreviations, or common alternates in all languages
2. Trace Brand-Adjacent Terms
Brand-adjacent terms refer to any keywords relevant to your brand. They are traced so you can find potential clients who have purchase intents, only that they did not mention your brand’s exact product or service.
For example, any travel agencies might monitor for “best tour operators” or any real estate agencies might monitor for “apartment rates.”
These non-branded keywords can be easily looked into Google Analytics or Google Webmaster tools. Check their internal data from these web services and pick the terms with a history of converting.
Micro-target the people who you found using adjacent terms to your brand. Start off tactfully and use likable articles. Carefully gauge their intent rather than swamping them with pushy messaging. Otherwise, you might miss your chances to win them over.
When starting a conversation, especially with people who haven’t mentioned your brand, always strike the right balance.
3. Respond to Your Customer Needs
While the percentage of social messages that require a brand response is increasing, five out of six messages go unanswered. Even worse, customers nowadays expect you to respond to their queries 24/7.
In fact, statistics show that two-thirds of customers demand brands to solve sales, marketing, and customer service issues within 10 minutes or less. If you don’t meet their needs promptly, they won’t waver to switch their loyalty to competing brands.
Put another way, being unavailable is not an option for brands, especially if they are in a competitive market. That is why social listening is deemed necessary. You want to actively listen to your clients and engage in meaningful, two-way communication.
There are many ways to better your brand’s social listening. For example, set up a unified inbox in all of your social media networks. Other platforms allow you to configure specific alerts for various audience segments, as well. They tend to have smart inboxes that can delegate tasks to assigned team members without even leaving the same inbox.
4. Monitor Customer Sentiments
Many of the best product ideas come from your target audiences. Crowdsource actionable insights on content, products, and pricing from your customers who vested interest in your brand.
At least to public perception, doing so offers you a better sense of what direction your brand is headed in. You can usually employ their sentiment in your product roadmap.
The sentiment of your clients can also give you a top-level view of your brand’s performance. A high volume of brand mentions is great, but it is not a good sign if they are accompanied by negative sentiments. In this case, you have to improve your customer service to prevent the snowball effect.
On the other hand, your business experiences low brand awareness if you are getting a low volume of brand mentions with positive sentiments. If this happens, it’s recommended to accelerate and improve your marketing efforts better.
5. Run Competitors’ Analysis
In business, it has always been a rule of thumb to be mindful of your competition. Social monitoring is crucial to that effort. Inspect your competitors’ brand mentions the same way as you did your own.
Competitors’ brand mentions usually show up in search results every time you set up alerts for keywords in your market niche. Check their product ideas, customer feedback, unique marketing strategies, and even their tactical mistakes.
Negative sentiments from the customers of your competitors can serve as additional business opportunities for your brand. You can win over these dissatisfied customers by offering them better deals and competitive prices, but don’t reach them out directly.
Make a soft pitch, ideally through influencers or brand advocates. This won’t make your brand look aggressive or desperate, which can be a total turn-off to other potential customers.
Social Media Monitoring Strategy can leave a big impact on your marketing tactics. It gives you a clearer understanding of how your existing and potential clients discuss your brand, what are the best product ideas, and how your competitors do their business.
All of these can give your brand reputation management opportunities. Follow the steps above and give your brand a competitive advantage!
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I am Adeyemi Adetilewa, a media consultant, entrepreneur, husband, and father. Founder and Editor-In-Chief of Ideas Plus Business Magazine, online business resources for entrepreneurs. I help brands share unique and impactful stories through the use of public relations, advertising, and online marketing. My work has been featured on the Huffington Post, Thrive Global, Addicted2Success, Hackernoon, The Good Men Project, and other publications.