The Ultimate Social Listening Guide: Importance, Advantages, and Tools
Most brands aim to have a strong presence on social media, whether directly by managing different social media accounts, or indirectly by interacting with the content customers share about their experiences with these brands. For these reasons, it is essential to follow social listening strategies to achieve this goal.
Social listening helps brands monitor their presence on social media and what users of these platforms think about their services, or even those of their competitors. This enables brands to benefit from this information in formulating their marketing messages, as well as figuring out, solving, and dealing with weaknesses in their services.
In this Social Listening Guide, you’ll find answers to all the questions you need to be aware of before looking for the right social listening tools for you. What is the concept of social listening? Why is it important? What are its advantages? How do you make use of the information it provides you? Finally, which tools are most suitable for your needs?
The concept of social listening
Social listening refers to the practice of monitoring social media platforms to track what customers are saying about your brand, the services you offer, related topics, and your competitors. After gathering this information, it is analyzed to gain insights that can be used to enhance your brand’s image.
Suppose you run an online store, and a customer has a problem with your service. When they contacted your Customer Service, things did not go well, and they wrote a negative tweet advising people not to do business with your store. However, by utilizing social listening tools, you can be alerted to such incidents and address them quickly, which can help protect your online store’s reputation.
Here is another example: Customers may share their opinions about your restaurant service, including incidents or anecdotes that happened during their visit. Unfortunately, sometimes fake accounts may be created in your restaurant’s name, and negative or annoying responses may be posted in response to these tweets. To combat these incidents, social listening tools can be used to track and address fake accounts as quickly as possible. By taking action promptly, you can help preserve your restaurant’s reputation and maintain a positive image in the eyes of your customers.
What sets social listening apart from the rest of social media monitoring tools is that social listening not only collects data about a brand’s online presence and services, but also employs this information in building a marketing strategy that answers key questions, such as:
- How can we improve this service or product?
- Do customers prefer to group brand services into a Bundle package?
- Do customers find the brand prices high or undeserved?
- How satisfied are your customers with your customer service?
- What services or products would your customers like you to offer them?
In other words, social listening is more of an advanced stage of social media monitoring.
Stages of Social Listening
Social listening is composed of three main stages:
During this stage, social media platforms are monitored for any references to the brand, whether they are tagged or not, as well as any keywords related to the brand’s products or services, as well as its competitors. This helps to ensure that a comprehensive overview of the brand’s online presence is obtained.
During this stage, the company analyzes the data that was collected during the previous stage, with the goal of understanding the underlying emotions and motivations behind what is being said about the brand on social media. This analysis helps to identify what customers like and dislike about the company’s services or products, and provides insights that can be used to improve the customer experience.
By analyzing the data collected during the Monitoring Phase, companies can formulate an appropriate response to what is being circulated about them on social media. This response may take many forms, from small-scale actions such as reaching out to individual customers to address their concerns, to more radical measures such as modifying the company’s marketing plans. By leveraging the insights obtained from social listening, companies can take targeted actions to improve their online reputation, enhance the customer experience, and drive growth for the business.
The Importance of Social Listening
Social listening enables brands to gain precise insights into what their customers actually think about their services, rather than making assumptions. By using real data to inform their actions, brands can increase the effectiveness of their strategies and tactics. This approach can lead to more successful outcomes in areas such as customer retention, acquisition, and overall brand reputation.
Large companies recognize the value of social listening, as evidenced by a recent study conducted by The Social Intelligence Lab. The study found that 80% of respondents had invested in multiple social listening tools, with one-third of them spending more than $100,000 in this area. Here are some highlights on the importance of investing in social listening:
Gain Customer Satisfaction
In today’s business landscape, customers seek out brands that prioritize their needs and actively listen to their feedback. By using social listening tools, businesses can gain real-time insights into customer opinions and preferences, and use this information to improve their products, services, and overall customer experience. By demonstrating that they are responsive to customer feedback and willing to take action based on their input, brands can build stronger relationships with their customers and enhance their reputation in the marketplace.
Social listening provides businesses with a unique opportunity to enhance customer satisfaction and improve the overall customer experience. By leveraging the insights gleaned from social media conversations and online feedback, businesses can identify pain points, uncover new opportunities, and tailor their products and services to better meet the needs of their target audience. This not only helps businesses retain existing customers but also increases the likelihood of turning them into brand ambassadors, who can help spread positive word-of-mouth marketing and attract new customers to the brand.
Protect your Brand’s Reputation
Every business is bound to experience occasional hiccups that may result in negative feedback from customers on social media. However, if these negative comments become a trend, it could be an indication of a more systemic problem with the company’s customer service system. Social listening tools allow businesses to monitor online public conversations in real-time and identify the root cause of customer complaints and concerns.
Social listening tools enable businesses to analyze the vast amounts of data generated by social media platforms and identify the root cause of customer issues and concerns. Whether it’s a problem with a specific employee or a systemic issue with the customer service system, businesses can use this data to take corrective action and mitigate negative comments.
Brand hijacking is a growing concern for businesses on social media. Malicious users create fake accounts that impersonate legitimate brands, using them to spread misinformation or damage the brand’s reputation, in what is called “Brand Hijacking”. Social listening tools can help businesses identify these fake accounts and take the necessary steps to shut them down.
Raising the quality of the company’s services
Social listening allows brands to gain insights into their customers’ desires and preferences, helping them to understand what their audience wants to see from the brand. For instance, if a company that produces headphones and audio devices recently introduced a wired headset, social listening can provide data to support the decision by showing that there is indeed a market demand for such an update.
By monitoring your customers’ feedback on your new product, you can determine what they would like to see from your brand, thus reducing the risk behind such decisions, and increasing your chances of success.
Increase the probability of acquiring new customers
Analyzing data from social listening tools can help you identify potential customers from among your followers who engage with and enjoy the content you provide on social media. This allows you to more effectively target this segment of followers with relevant offers and promotions, as opposed to targeting random audiences in the hopes of finding those interested in your brand or products.
Social listening goes beyond monitoring your brand’s mentions on social media. It can be expanded to include identifying relevant keywords related to your industry. For example, you can track the names of your products, their types, or even the names of your competitors to gather valuable insights. This approach allows you to collect a wealth of data that you can use to improve your business.
Understanding the pain points and concerns of customers who are using your competitors’ services can help you offer a superior alternative that can attract them to your brand. Social listening also allows you to monitor conversations around your industry, such as discussions about international shipping, and identify your customers’ concerns, so you can find solutions to better meet their needs.
Collecting Honest Customer Feedback
Monitoring and analyzing customer feedback is essential for determining the success of a company’s marketing strategies and the quality of its products and services. Social listening tools provide valuable insights as they enable you to gather and evaluate customer feedback in a more structured and systematic manner, as opposed to relying on random surveys or questionnaires.
Analyzing customer feedback keeps the company in touch with their customers, providing the brand with insights into their feelings, and allowing it to better meet their needs and gain their satisfaction, which would reflect positively on its sales and revenues.
Identifying the Right Influencers for Your Business
Social listening helps you identify the influencers most closely related to your brand and the services or products you offer and ranks them for you in terms of the most suitable ones to cooperate with. This contributes to increasing the awareness of followers of these influencers about your brand and increases the chances of converting them to new customers.
Talent Monitoring and Recruitment
Your company’s HR department can use social listening tools to monitor people looking for jobs, enabling you to communicate with them, verify their skills, and possibly add them to your company’s team.
Social Listening with Lucidya
Lucidya stands out from other social listening tools in that it takes into account the needs of business owners in the Arab world – or in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region – which makes it the perfect choice for you if you operate in this region, or if you use the Arabic language in general.
The Arabic language has many dialects and a terminology that is difficult for other tools to monitor or analyze. For example: it can be easy to miss the positive notions behind the terms “Dakhilo (literally: intruder)” and “Youberni (literally: bury me)”, and to pain negative such terms with negative feelings, which is ultimately misleading. Lucidya prevents such occurrences from happening through its artificial intelligence engine that works with unparalleled accuracy in analyzing Arabic content.
The services provided by Lucidya also include comparisons to competitors, discovering the most suitable influencers, measuring Customer Service Efficiency, reaching potential customers, and measuring the impact of marketing campaigns, putting you ahead when developing your marketing plans.
Social listening helps bring brands closer to their customers and creates unique opportunities for these brands that would have remained undiscovered without the use of social listening tools. It has indeed become a necessity for companies that want to improve their services and increase their profits to invest in social listening tools.