Social media is the home of information today. On average, over 500 million messages are sent out through Twitter alone! Among all this chatter, people are undoubtedly talking about your brand. From potential customers to the general public, everyone is likely to be engaged in a conversation relevant to your industry. The question is: Are you listening? Do you have a brand monitoring platform set up?
If yes, then how are you responding to all the information that is available about your brand? For leveraging these social conversations, it is important that you understand exactly how you can incorporate them into your marketing strategy. In this article, we look at how you can advance your brand monitoring efforts to promote business growth.
#1 LOOK FOR INSIGHTS
What makes brand monitoring incredible is that there is no certain way of telling what information you can find next. It is similar to fishing, you just have to see what is ‘trending’ on a particular day.
However, in general, the most useful outcome of a brand monitoring effort is to find an opportunity. These opportunities can come in all shapes and sizes. For instance, you could find an idea for a new blog post or a way to enhance your product. Regardless of what form the opportunity takes, it will benefit your brand if you decide to seize it. This is the reason why brand monitoring is so important for business growth.
Now, what is important is to understand what exactly to look for in your monitoring results. When you are sorting through the report, you should know what kind of opportunity each metric provides. Let us take a look at a few examples of this:
- Sentiment: What is the emotional reaction of people towards your brand? Are they saying mostly positive or mostly negative things? Can you identify any patterns that you can use to improve the positive/negative feedback ratio? This is a metric that should be tracked over a long period of time so that you can turn the negative opinions of your audience into positive recommendations.
- Feedback: The feedback that you receive on your product or services is always beneficial, particularly if you pay attention to the informal conversations that take place on social media. This provides you with insight into how your product is performing. Remember that the purpose of this is not to respond immediately, but instead to listen and this is how successful brands improve themselves.
- Questions: If you see that the audience is frequently asking the same questions about your brand or target industry repeatedly, then you have an opportunity to create a new piece of viral content. Recurring questions are a sign that the customers are not fully informed. They tell us that customers are looking for relevant information in the subject manner. By creating a new piece of content to address these questions, you will be providing the customers with what they need while boosting traffic to your own website simultaneously.
- Links: Keep a track of who is linking to your brand and how they are linking back. This can come in very handy for search engine optimization (SEO) campaigns.
- Language: This is a strong indicator of whether you should publish content in different languages or not. If there are customers, who are mentioning your brand in a language different from the one that you use, it is a sign that you should translate/produce content in that language. It might also be a signal that you should consider building a multi-language customer support service.
- Negative points: If several customers are facing the same issue with your products, then you need to make a change. It is an opportunity for you to enhance your product or change the way, in which you provide customer support. On the other hand, if a number of people are complaining about a problem associated with your target industry, then it provides you with a great opportunity to build a problem-solving product. Alternatively, you could also address the issue in a ‘rant’ blog post to boost your page hits.
- Content: Brand monitoring is a good way for finding all kinds of content relevant to your industry. You can either share the content, learn from it, or use it as an idea for producing your own content. If you see that the same content is being rotated, then you should focus on producing content on these topics.
- Trends: One of the most effective growth strategies for a business is to identify industry trends early. Through brand monitoring, you can learn about what the customers need, what the industry is missing, and what your competitors are up to. By combining these insights, you can determine upcoming trends to get an edge over the competition.
- Influencers and Advocates: In every industry, there are thousands of influencers, who are ‘social’ celebrities and have a strong following on social networks. These individuals have a voice that resonates louder than others. Through brand monitoring, you can discover the influencers in your industry and then get them to make recommendations for you. There is nothing more persuasive than a social celebrity endorsing your products.
- Press opportunities: A part of a journalist’s job is to find trending and upcoming news on social media. Even though it might not seem like it, the press is very active on social networks. Brand monitoring enables you to read what journalists in the industry are working on and what questions are they raising. This provides you with the right opportunity to get some attention from the press.
#2 LOOK FOR BRAND-RELATED INFORMATION
The amount of information available on social networks is overwhelming. Even if you filter out information related to your brand and target industry only, it can still be quite difficult to monitor and analyze it. Therefore, it is important that you understand what brand-related information you need to look for.
An absolute necessity for all organizations is to monitor keywords that are related to their brand, regardless of how big or small they might be. Most people will directly mention your product, service, brand, or business. However, just filtering out results using #brandname or @brandname will not cut it because there are many users that forget to add these hashtags or might use different hashtags together. Therefore, it is important that you also keep track of this information by making use of brand-related keywords. You can also further improve the monitoring process by searching for commonly misspelled words and product names.
You can search for this lost information through Twitter’s search operation. However, we recommend that you use a social listening tool, which will automate the task for you.
Monitoring terms that are related to your target industry will help you find customers that might be interested in purchasing from you but have never actually mentioned your product or brand. An industry keyword is a term that a customer would use to look up a product or service. These are generic terms that are related to the industry your business operates.
For example, a bookseller could make use of the industry keyword “best stories” in their brand monitoring strategy.
However, you should not engage in a direct conversation with people, who have never actually mentioned your product or brand. This can make you seem too desperate and it can be uninviting for the customer. Your message should have the right balance. It should not be pushy and should provide meaningful insight to the potential customer.
Queries from Customers:
An increasing number of customers turn to social media for finding answers. In fact, a study shows that 78% of customers who post a query or complaint on a brand’s social media page expect a response in an hour or less. Statistics also show that the number of social media messages that needed a brand response increased by 18% in the last year. Despite this, brands respond to only 11% of the people that interact with them. If you fail to reply within this timeframe, it will leave a negative impression on the customer and it might even turn them away from your business!78% of customers who post a query or complaint on a brand’s social media page expect a response in an hour or less! Click To Tweet
Make sure that you never leave your customers’ queries unanswered. Brand monitoring is not just about active listening but also about engaging in meaningful and productive communication with customers. It is essential that you provide useful answers to customers’ questions during every stage of their purchasing process. Moreover, customer feedback plays a crucial part in the important process of a brand audit.
Keeping an eye on the competition is important for the growth of your business. It helps you highlight the areas that your brand needs to work on. To monitor your competitors, start off by tracking their brand keywords and product keywords to gather information about what they are working on, what customers are saying about them, and how are they marketing themselves.
Monitoring all of this brand-related information is very important for the growth of a business. It is an integral part of the brand monitoring process that requires a significant amount of analytical processing from your end. However, you can minimize this effort by making use of a powerful brand monitoring platform such as Mentionlytics.
We recommend that you make use of Mentionlytics for collecting and interpreting brand-related information. The tool automates the process so that all you need to do is to focus on the insights provided.
#3 REFINE AND COMMUNICATE
When you start seeing the results of social media monitoring, there are high chances that you would want to make your searches more refined in order to get better results. At this point, you can add or subtract words from your searches, which would make them more effective and focused.
The next major task you have to do is to combine and integrate this pile of data that you have collected, and figure out all possible ways in which you can effectively use this information. While you are trying to act on the gathered results, make sure the flow of information does not stop.
If you’re a small company or completely on your own, it would not be very difficult to take action according to what you have learned, so you keep growing and getting better. From this point onwards, don’t be afraid to get as creative as you want so that you keep discovering and learning more. Below are some final thoughts that you can incorporate in order to improve.
In the industry phrase searches, include qualifying words such as ‘suggest’, ‘recommend’, and ‘anyone’. This will help you find the people, who are looking for a product similar to yours.
Make use of words like ‘great’ and ‘love’ so you can find more positive mentions. It’s always good to reach out to your fans using a small token of appreciation.
Look for more unique forms of shareable content to link with your own blog. This can be done by using specific terms like ‘infographic’ in your topic searches.
#4 ENGAGE, ENGAGE, ENGAGE
Using social media only to share content is equivalent to talking to your own self. As mentioned above, your brand will be unknown, or at least not widely known at the early stages. Hence, it is essential to let people know about your existence in the market, by interacting and engaging with them on social media. It isn’t rocket science – you can start off by just retweeting and commenting on Instagram and Facebook posts.
Quite commonly, companies are not comfortable with replying to a post from the company account. However, this is nothing to worry about as it’s totally acceptable and normal for companies to reply to customers or to each other on social media platforms. Burger King’s Twitter account was hacked in 2013 and many people blamed McDonald’s for the act. Considering the situation, McDonald’s was quick to contact Burger King for informing them that they didn’t have any part in the act.
What we see from this example is that you shouldn’t be afraid of communicating with other companies on social media, regardless of what your position is in the market. This lets people and companies know and feel your presence.
#5 THINK DIFFERENTLY
Innovation is a necessity when it comes to marketing and this is exactly what we need with the brand monitoring process, as well. Let us take a look at some out-of-the-box tactics that you can use to promote the growth of your brand:
Monitor Your Brand in Different Languages:
Many companies make the mistake of monitoring the brand mentions in their native language only. This is not very effective if you’re serving markets that use a language different from your native language. In order to cater to a multi-lingual audience, it is imperative that you monitor your brand in all the relevant languages.
Use Location Filters and Look for Patterns:
A lot of brand monitoring tools contain location filters and it’s imperative that they cater to every market that you serve.
Collect information about all relevant regions and search for parallels. Your purpose should be to determine the different views of your brand according to the market and people.
Compare Feedback Against Your Regional Branding Strategies:
It’s common for brands to make the mistake of focusing on whether their customers have a good image of their brand, instead of checking if the feedback shows that their marketing strategies are effective. It’s important to remember that your marketing aims will differ according to each country or region. When any of your customers makes a statement about your brand, calculate the extent to which you’ve achieved those goals.
A good long-term marketing strategy is always one that is developed by taking customers’ views into account. See whether your brand or a new product is getting positive or negative reviews. Pay attention to the other brands that are being mentioned alongside yours, then work on giving your brand a better position. Be an active listener, encourage meaningful conversations, and remember to improvise whenever you can. To assist you in the brand monitoring process, you can always make use of social listening tools such as Mentionlytics that handle the information gathering and analytics part for you.