3.6 billion people worldwide used social media in 2020, and this number is expected to increase to almost 4.41 billion in 2025.
If you own a brand, think about how many of these people could turn into a potential army of your brand supporters, ambassadors and consumers?
To help you understand the mechanisms of knowing your audience and reacting according to their behavior patterns, experts from reputable Business Analytics Courses or web design company in New York have shared insights on the importance of social listening.
They also explained how social listening could build trust, boost business reputation and generate leads. Let’s explore their insights.
What Is Social Listening?
Social listening is the process of tracking and analyzing social media, news sites, forums and blogs for mentions of your brand, industry or competitors.
It is an element of audience research that provides important consumer insights and helps you build successful marketing campaigns and strategies to improve your brand reputation.
If you operate in New York, you can contact a New York web design company or eCommerce development company in New York to help you with guidance and advice. They will make sure you use all the benefits of social listening to build and enhance your brand reputation.
Social Listening vs. Social Monitoring
Although people often use these terms interchangeably, they actually refer to different things.
What is the main difference between the two?
Social monitoring gives you relevant information on what people are saying about your products and brand and what is actually happening in the digital world.
Imagine it as an observation and data-driven collection process that forms the foundation for social listening.
Social monitoring can often be tracked manually by conducting research and defining relevant content.
Because you act upon something that has already happened in the form of a comment or review, your approach to social monitoring can be described as reactive. You respond to questions and comments but proceed no further with integrating the received insights into a future strategy.
Social listening goes deeper and touches upon the reasons for these social mentions and reactions.
It helps you understand the reactions from your audience, along with their behavior patterns, thoughts and feelings about your brand
The algorithms and machine learning processes request automated measuring of social listening. This ensures in-depth analytics and optimization of your time and human resources.
Identifying trends and patterns gives you the possibility to move to an entirely new level and approach the insight-driven findings in a proactive way. This helps to make product or service modifications and prevent problematic situations from being repeated.
Based on the data collected through social monitoring, you can use social listening to build a consumer-driven strategy to enhance your digital performance and brand reputation.
Social Listening Benefits For Your Brand
Listening is an important element of all types of communication, including business interaction. It builds trust, solves misunderstandings, eliminates conflict and improves relationships.
Active listening goes a step further. It is a conscious effort that shows you other people’s perspectives and attitudes towards your business and encourages you to come up with improvements to benefit both you and your consumers.
In the highly competitive world of today, companies listen to what their audiences choose to share. 51 HYPERLINK “https://www.emarketer.com/content/social-listening”% of worldwide marketers used social listening platforms to get information about their consumers during the Covid pandemic in 2020.
The benefits of social listening for your brand reputation are numerous, but let’s focus on some of the major ones:
Identifying Customers’ Challenges
Tracking and analyzing your brand mentions can give you a clear picture of the strong and weak sides of your products and services, as well as the issues your customers encounter when using them.
Paying close attention to these comments makes it possible to adjust your products and services so that they meet your customers’ expectations and needs.
52% of consumers trust online reviews the way they would trust personal recommendations.
Analyzing customers’ reviews and comments can give you information on what they like or dislike, what changes they would like to see and how your product or services can be improved.
It can also guide you on what topics to educate the customers if you have realized the audience is experiencing issues with it.
Engaging With Customers
Customers who are engaged by companies across social media platforms spend 40% more time with them compared to other customers.
Once you see feedback on the internet in the form of customers’ requests, comments and reviews, and interact by thanking them, offering clarification or assisting with problems.
Portraying your brand as caring, responsive and responsible is crucial when interacting with customers and providing helpful feedback.
The result will be satisfied customers who have experienced personalized and friendly communication with your brand.
This will no doubt affect your brand perception and build loyalty and trust. The customers can even share your communication with their personal or professional networks and thus generate additional interest and advocacy.
This step, in turn, will not only keep existing customers but also contribute to gaining new ones.
88% of consumers would not buy from companies that do not react to their complaints.
Being open to various company topics in the digital world is not easy.
But it pays off with loyalty and trust on the part of the customers and a company reputation of reliability, responsibility and human approach.
Respond directly to both positive and negative comments. Show you are here for your customers and respect their opinion.
Identifying Influencers And Brand Advocates
Social listening will give you valuable insights into the popular people in your business field. This can be a wonderful beginning for future interaction, collaboration and a strategic partnership over time.
Apart from influencers, there will always be people who are passionate about your products and services, acting as your brand ambassadors across social media platforms.
Keep them loyal to your brand by regularly interacting with them, updating them on company news and offering incentives for promoting your company.
Once you have established relations with your customers, it will be easier to show them more of your business and build trust.
Trust is a vital element in business interaction. Stay in contact with your customers may become part of your marketing database later on, get news and updates on products and services and eventually make a purchase.
Compiling Knowledge On Your Competitors
Tracking what consumers are saying about the competition can be a great way to look at your products from a different perspective.
It can help you understand what consumers are looking for, if they compare your products to the competition, how you can tweak products or services to meet customers’ desires and more.
Use this information to modify your product features or presentation, make them attractive and gain popularity.
Managing And Preventing Crises
Social media platforms are powerful. They can build up, or disrupt, a smooth process in hours. Real-time reactions about your brand can help you stay prepared at all times.
Staying on top of dislikes, negative reviews or escalating issues can position you a step ahead and help with managing a challenging situation before it turns into an avalanche crisis affecting your brand reputation.
How Social Listening Can Enhance Your Brand Reputation
Are you listening enough to what the others are saying about you? Are you considering their opinion and acting upon them?
Social listening is instrumental in understanding your consumer behaviors as well as their sentiments regarding your competitors.
It opens the doors to efficient company-consumer communication that can turn into a long-lasting business relationship.
Let’s look at some of the ways in which social listening can enhance your brand reputation.
- Provides information on the possible adjustments to improve your products and services
- Improves your customer service
- Gives insights into consumers’ sentiments, preferences and needs
- Inspires to create a better, consumer-driven digital content
- Assists to identify influencers and brand supporters
- Spreads company news to larger audiences
- Improves industry and competition knowledge
- Helps launch strategic marketing campaigns based on consumers’ reviews, comments and expectations
- Encourages you to improve your customers’ digital experience
- Portrays you as a responsive and responsible company
- Builds trust
Takeaways on Social Listening
Social listening is an important factor to consider when building your marketing strategy.
Being aware of customers’ sentiments, attitudes, experiences and expectations on your products and services can help you modify both your products and their presentation.
Engaging with customers, providing timely and quality feedback, promoting transparency and identifying your brand advocates can benefit your business in more ways than one, including building trust and boosting your brand reputation.
Tracking and analyzing data can be done on your own using social listening tools or with the assistance of a professional company.
Tomas is a digital marketing specialist and a freelance blogger. His work is focusing on new web tech trends and digital voice distribution across different channels.