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Social Listening: How to Get Started

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Abigail Adams

how to use social listening

As a brand, it’s crucial to pay attention to your customers and audience – especially on social media. If you’re looking for simple ways to stay connected and provide resources to the people who support you the most, start with a polished social listening plan.

Social listening is the monitoring of your brand’s social media channels for any customer feedback and direct mentions of your brand. When we first set up social listening for clients, we try to define key areas to focus on along with an end goal and a solid plan for how to get there. We’ve compiled some best practices to assist your social media teams in this process.

Establish messaging templates

Before you begin responding to any direct mentions, make sure you have a solidified messaging template that is approved and ready to go. This template should include a variety of appropriate social responses based on several topics that relate to your brand. Have multiple eyes read the templates before you start using them to make sure your tone of voice is on-brand and makes sense.

Important things to include when creating social messaging:

  • A consistent brand voice
  • Contact information (email, phone number, business hours, etc.)
  • Positive responses to positive mentions/comments
  • Crisis management process (how are you responding to negative messages? Who is signing off on them? Etc.)
  • A list of topics to avoid interacting with on social (politics, competitors, etc.)

Analyze your data

Once social listening plans are in place, your teams can analyze the data you need to make informed decisions going forward. There are many topics to pay attention to while you start analyzing this data.

  • Seasonal Trends: What are people talking about in certain months/seasons? 
  • Sentiment Changes: Are negative comments plaguing one certain type of social media post? Are people more sensitive to certain topics?
  • Demographics: Are you targeting the right group of people? Who is seeing your posts and engaging with them the most? 
  • Engagement: How many people are liking, sharing, and commenting on your content? 

Analyzing this data can help your social media teams create better social content, improve your social listening messaging, and give you a better idea of who your audience really is and how they are engaging with your content. 

Social listening tools make this process even easier to begin and continue to use as you move forward with an established plan.

Here are a few of our favorite tools that we recommend: 

  • Sprout Social
  • Hootsuite
  • HubSpot
  • Mention
  • BuzzSumo
  • Awario

Implement social listening into your daily marketing/social media efforts to keep up with all important social mentions of your company or brand. 

Visit our Deep Ads Thoughts blog to learn more about current advertising, marketing and public relations tips and trends. Plus, check out our Push n’ Pull blog for all things in the world of digital and social media.

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