The Importance of Social Monitoring and Social Listening for your Brand
By Mary Clare Riordan, Marketing Administrator
This week was Social Media Week in Chicago, and on Tuesday, LYONSCG Digital Consultant, Jess Jenkins, participated in a panel entitled, “How Can Social Media become an Integral Part of Website, SEO and Content Strategy?” Jess, along with Andy Crestodina of Orbit Media, Patrick Cuttica of Sprout Social, and Benji Greenberg of BCV, discussed how to effectively develop and execute a social media strategy that ties into your SEO, content, and paid media strategy. I was there to hear about best practices from these experts and to see what trends they anticipate coming in 2016 and beyond.
A topic that was discussed in detail, and something that you really should consider when incorporating your social media strategy into your site and content strategy, was the importance of both social monitoring and listening. While these terms are often used interchangeably, and are overall very closely related, there’s a slight difference between the two. Social monitoring is when you watch the social interactions with your brand, and then choose to engage or not to engage with users. Social listening differs in that you take these social media interactions, and go beyond engagement to use them in determining patterns and trends, and consequently, to develop high level business strategies.
By using social monitoring and listening to keep tabs on what’s being said about your company (and maybe just as important—about your competitors), you can make informed decisions about what matters to your customers. You’ll be able to solve customer service issues via social, and engage with users to create brand loyalty. Maybe you notice a lot of people commenting on the strengths and/or weaknesses, of your products; you could take those messages to generate new product development ideas, and better service your customers. You may also start to notice certain themes or patterns among your customers. Does it seem like a lot of your customers post and talk about dogs (who doesn’t love a good puppy video)? Use that information to create content that relates to the interests of your customers and gets them talking and interacting with your brand; their friends will notice, and you could gain even more customers as a result.
As the world becomes increasingly digital, social monitoring and listening have become even more relevant and important to companies. The great thing about social monitoring and listening is that you don’t have to ask people what they want, you just pay attention to what they’re already saying to figure out what they need , which is both effective and, even better, time and cost-efficient. Of course every brand is different and has different business goals, but if you pay attention to your customers online, answer their needs, and keep them engaged with good and relevant content, you’ll be that much closer to establishing loyal customers for life.
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Mary Clare Riordan is a Marketing Administrator at LYONSCG and a graduate of Marquette University.