Social media monitoring is the process of listening to what customers, prospects and the general public are saying about your brand online.
Somewhat confusingly, the term ‘social media monitoring’ doesn’t just refer to monitoring social media. You can use social media monitoring tools to trawl e-commerce sites, news and review publications, blogs, forums and social media platforms for mentions of your brand.
You’ll hear most people use the terms ‘social listening’ and ‘social media monitoring’ interchangeably. Rest easy - both mean more or less the same thing.
Even Snapchat Stories and YouTube comments can offer interesting audience insights
How Can Social Media Monitoring Tools Help Me?
If you run digital communications channels, you’ll know all about the importance of:
Responding quickly to customer queries and complaints
Understanding why some posts get more likes and shares than others
Identifying influential people who talk about your brand or industry
Learning about customer demographics, their likes, dislikes and spending habits
Reporting key findings to the rest of your business (PR, product development, C-suite)
Social media monitoring tools are designed to help you do all these things, and more. Use them to:
Track keywords relating to your brand, competitors, and industry trends
Gauge consumer feelings about a particular topic (sentiment analysis)
Observe engagement patterns (when are people talking about your brand)
Create influencer contact lists for your PR team
Set up smart alerts to notify you when your brand is mentioned, in real-time
Create customizable dashboards to visualize all this data
Report on your analysis
Social Media Monitoring Success Stories
Branded social media can help or hurt any business. Just ask whoever was in charge of Krispy Kreme’s social media when they published this disastrous Facebook post in 2015.
Thankfully, social media monitoring tools can help you spot any glaring oversights wrinkles in your social campaigns in real time. Here are three switched-on brands that nail it every time:
Nescafé used Talkwalker to shape their social strategy in Malaysia. The social listening tool helped them uncover a community of Instagram coffee influencers, and find keywords that Malaysians associated with coffee.
Within three months, they’d quadrupled Instagram engagements, quintupled their follower count, and achieved an eightfold increase in mentions of their Dolce Gusto brand. We imagine their hard-working social media team at least doubled their coffee consumption to make all that happen…
The famed fast-food chain created a new sauce based on insights gathered from Oracle’s Social Cloud software. After seeing thousands of fan posts praising their sauces on Facebook and Twitter, Arby’s launched a marketing campaign for a brand new bottled version.
The result? 50,000+ bottles sold, and more than 500,000 social media impressions for the hashtag #Saucepocalypse. Tasty.
Oreo has an outstanding social media team, supported by the Sysomos social media management suite. The brand has more than 46 million followers on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and a funny GIF for what seems like every occasion.
Their social listening skills were on full display during the 2013 Super Bowl, when a power outage forced a stoppage of play. Oreo responded within minutes with this gem of a Tweet. Some say they’re still selling biscuits off the back of it.
What Are the Best Social Media Monitoring Services?
Social media monitoring technologies have come a long way in a short space of time. Today, lots of companies claim to offer “social media automation services”.
But what does that buzz phrase really mean? And how do you separate sales speak from honest appraisals of these services?
Well, no tool can answer a complex string of customer queries, or create an audience engagement strategy from scratch. In other news, ice is cold and pigs are pork...
But there are social media monitoring services that make these tasks a whole lot easier.
To help you understand which services are worth your time, we’ve rated and ranked 12 of the best.