Marketing 4 min read

Social Listening: What it is and Why it Matters in Your Marketing Strategy

Social listening is one of the most significant marketing techniques that business owners must use to know what people are saying about their brand on different digital media channels like social networking sites and forums.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock

Image courtesy of Shutterstock

Social listening is an essential part of every marketing strategy, and you’re about to find out why.

As important as it is for every brand to get their message out there, talking is overrated. To have a meaningful conversation with customers, you must learn how to listen too.

Considering the thousands of ways various people communicate their feelings, listening has never been an easy task. From tracking Twitter and LinkedIn to reading what people are saying about your business on forums and blogs, listening has become more challenging than ever.

Still, it’s vital that you stay on top of what people are saying about your brand. That’s where social listening comes in.

What is Social Listening?

Social listening involves creating alerts for specific keywords to receive a notification when people talk about you on digital channels. These include websites, social media, public forums, and blogs.

Unlike post-campaign engagements, social listening allows you to step into a real-time online conversation about your brand. That way, you’ll not only know what people are saying about your brand, but you’ll understand how they feel too.

As you can imagine, this is a much more useful metric than counting the number of likes and retweets.

Should You Apply Social Listening to Your Business?

Should You Apply Social Listening to Your Business
Image courtesy of Shutterstock

Absolutely! Instead of making assumptions about what your customers need, you can interact with them, and listen to what they’re saying. People often voice their opinion about a brand – whether via social media, public forums, or blog posts.

Here are four essential reasons to start using social listening.

1. Customers Like Responsive Brands

Everyone, including your customers, wants to feel heard.

In Sprout Social survey, 83 percent of the participants said that they liked it when brands respond to questions. Also, 63 percent like when brands join a conversation.

As essential as responsiveness is, customers expect more than that. Social listening involves being able to craft thoughtful responses that’ll ultimately provide real value.

Not only will this increase customer retention rate, but it could also elicit brand loyalty too.

2. You Can Track Your Brand’s Growth

Amid scandal, disasters, or any other issues that may threaten your brand, social listening can be convenient. While you can ignore a couple of negative comments, things could get ugly fast when they outweigh the positive ones.

Using this marketing technique, you can analyze the recent event and how it affects your customer base. You will be able to project if it would lead to a decrease in followers, sales, or other potential outcomes that may affect your business.

That way, you’ll know if the negative comments on social media is simply a phase, and it has no lasting effect on your brand.

3. Get More Customers

Your social media followers are not always your customers. A large number of them are people that only found your page by accident and just happened to enjoy your content.

These are the kind of people you should be targeting.

Using social listening, you can take note of the content that your audience enjoys and figure out how to create other similar ones. As you feed your followers relevant content that matches their taste, you’ll eventually draw them more into your brand.

4. Discover New Opportunities

Finding ways to innovate your business is not always an easy task. Instead of wasting countless hours trying to figure out how to become better, let your customers do the work.

As said earlier, people always have opinions, and they are vocal about them on social media and other public forums. By listening to your audience, you’ll not only discover ways to improve your brand, but you’ll also find other ways to satisfy your customers.

Using Social Listening in Your Business

Several social media software online offer solutions designed to improve your interaction with customers.

Aside from providing access to in-depth data analytics to make strategic decisions about your brand, online software also offer an insight into what people think about your competitors.

There’s also an advanced social listening feature to help capture emerging trends and influencers. Some of the most popular social listening software include Hootsuite, Hubspot, and Sprout Social.

While specific features are unique to each software, they all provide the same fundamental service; social listening.

Read More: The 10 Best Social Media Campaign Strategies for Small Businesses

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Sumbo Bello

Sumbo Bello is a creative writer who enjoys creating data-driven content for news sites. In his spare time, he plays basketball and listens to Coldplay.

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