Social Listening – What Defines It?
Social media listening is the active process of understanding what is being said about a company, individual, product, brand, or relevant issue in all forms of social media. The emphasis is on “active” – and that means listening for both content and context.
As an example of listening for context, a Keyhole report shows that only 9% of any brand’s audience actually talks about that brand. So if a marketer is listening in on conversations and looking for brand mentions (keyword phrases with their brand name literally stated) in their social media listening tools, they will be missing over 90% of the conversations that are relevant.
Social Listening Measurement
It’s important to understand the difference between social mentions and social metrics, and it’s easy to get the two confused. After all, we’re talking about social media activity aren’t we?
A social mention is the text inclusion of a monitored keyword in a post on a social media platform, in an RSS feed, on a forum or board, and in places like Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and Pinterest. Social mentions are acts of self-expression, where an individual or organization invests some time and effort to be part, or start, of a conversation.
In the traditional media world of metrics, the number of impressions is usually a measure of value and reach. For social media metrics, it’s the number of people who choose to take an action in creating or sharing content (true engagement). As well, a tweet that has 10,000 impressions and no engagement is a weak signal (low value), whereas a tweet with 300 impressions that gets 20 retweets is a strong signal (high value).
Likes, loves, and faves, while not as passive as views or impressions, are a sign of approval and social proof.
Social Listening – What’s The Value?
Listening is a necessity for both agencies and brands. This is not only in our opinion. Altimeter Group says: “…listening/monitoring platforms were the biggest social media spend in organizations during 2013.” (1)
Social media listening is useful for deriving actionable insights from a brand’s overall visibility, measuring campaign impact, finding opportunities for engagement, keeping track of competitors, and staying on top of customer service issues. It can also provide insight into emerging trends of what the market is saying, as well as helping to identify brand advocates.
Here are some recent examples from the field:
Product development – Wendy’s discovers that customers were concerned about the nutritional content of the food, so they create an app that gives customers all the dietary information they needed to make an educated choice.
Customer service – Dell uses social listening in 11 languages to monitor complaints and get feedback on their customer service activity.
Identifying advocates – Morton’s discovers customers who have many followers in social media and rewards them – creating a positive feedback loop.
Monitoring sentiment – Kmart uses social listening to monitor the response to its “Ship My Pants” campaign, giving justification to allocate a budget for a bigger advertising spend on TV commercials.
Social Listening – What Tools Are Available?
Large social listening platforms process massive amounts of “big data” scraped from the entire social web. They feature complex and detailed analytics reports that typically require business analysts who are trained to understand and interpret complex analytics.
Typically starting at $5K per month, they can rapidly increase up to $25-50k, which translates to $250,000 – $500,000 a year in software fees alone. Some examples include: Radian6, Sysomos, Crimson Hexagon, BottleNose, and NetBase. If your business case justifies big data and the cost of a complex tool that parses the data in myriad ways, some of these large scale listening tools may be ideal for you.
Jugnoo SoMeAnalyzer™ – Affordable Listening
If you have not been able to find a solution that effectively combines the best of listening and engagement at a price point that works, then the Jugnoo SoMeAnalyzer™ is the only tool designed specifically to meet your needs. It’s a refined, fast, high performance social media platform designed as a cost-effective alternative to current offerings.
Our experience with both agency and brand perspectives has helped us build a platform that is lean enough to warrant reasonable pricing, yet powerful enough to fulfill what most executives with diverse objectives might need.
- Do you think there are features in listening tools that would add great value to your social media efforts, but your business case doesn’t justify the software fees and manpower costs required by those platforms?
- Would you like to get more value against defined business needs than is available to you when using from current engagement tools?
If your answer is yes, then SoMeAnalyzer can make social media easier for you.
For a more in-depth perspective on the intersection where Social Listening and Social Engagement meet, download our Whitepaper: Finding Your Social Media Sweetspot
SVP Global Business Development
1) Altimeter: The State of Social Business 2013
Crowd in Railway-Station