Social listening involves a company monitoring its social media accounts for customer feedback direct mentions of its brand, and wider industry trends.
Understanding social listening
While many businesses incorporated social listening in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, it is clear the approach is here to stay. According to Hootsuite, almost 66% of companies agree that social listening has increased in value over the past twelve months. What’s more, search demand for keywords such as “social listening” and “social listening tools” has seen a 22% year-over-year increase.
In essence, social listening enables the company to pinpoint exactly what it is that customers think about their brand, the competition, and potential industry trends. Tools can be used to track these conversations or brand mentions with respect to specific keywords, phrases, terms, or emojis that are relevant to the business. In so doing, the company can determine the overall perception of its brand without having to ask customers directly.
The benefits of social listening are numerous. For one, the company can create content that resonates with their followers based on what they think, feel, and need. Social listening can also be used to identify emerging industry trends and launch innovative products before the competition is even aware of them.
Social listening tools
There are a few different social listening tools on the market today, from advanced enterprise solutions to more basic and affordable options for smaller businesses.
Keyhole is a social media reporting platform for over 7,000 agencies and global brands such as Netflix, Google, Amazon, WWF, and BBC News.
While Keyhole is a more comprehensive platform comparable to Hubspot or Hootsuite, the dedicated social listening tool is a simplified but feature-rich solution for enterprise-level customers.
For example, QuickTrends allows companies to stay relevant and ahead of the competition by using what Keyhole calls “Google Trends for social media”. The platform also offers sentiment analysis, location-based mentions, keyword clouds, and hashtag tracking that can be used to analyze social media campaign performance.
Brand24 is a cost-effective but relatively robust social listening tool that can monitor conversations from a variety of sources. In addition to social media channels, Brand24 can also eavesdrop on consumers from review sites, newsletters, podcasts, and news sites.
Brand mentions are collected in real-time by a web-based tool with a clean interface and detailed analytics section. Metrics that can be tracked include social media reach, mentions, hashtag performance, and consumer sentiment.
Brandwatch is an enterprise-level tool that offers expansive functionality and a price tag to match. The platform covers most social media and non-social media-based channels with features such as industry trends, geolocation, demographic data, and image analysis.
Incorporated into the Brandwatch interface is Vizia, a data visualization platform that allows enterprises to make sense of their real-time data and derive important customer insights.
- Social listening involves a company monitoring its social media accounts for customer feedback, direct mentions of its brand, and wider industry trends.
- Keyhole is a comprehensive social media management platform with a dedicated social listening tool. Features include sentiment analysis, location-based mentions, keyword clouds, and hashtag tracking.
- Brand24 is a more cost-effective social listening tool that can monitor conversations from social media channels and many other sources. Brandwatch, on the other hand, is an enterprise-level tool with an integrated data visualization platform.