Social listening seems simple enough. It is the process of being totally aware of the feedback your company is getting on the social media platforms and then taking that data to be more responsive to the needs of your customers and your potential customers. Not only is listening and responding an effective way to be on top of your reputation management, but it is one of the most effective ways you have of crafting a social media marketing strategy that will be effective for the long term.
Speed is one of the weapons you will be using. Sure, you can’t respond to every comment right away but you must get to them within a 24 hour time span. This is what the social media community expects. You must have a social media marketing team that is dedicated to your reputation management and social listening. It is relationship building, damage control and long term planning all rolled into one process.
The listening evolves to where there is true engagement with your target audience. Many of the most successful brands are continuing to evolve that process to where they have multiple strategies deployed that makes it easier to engage their audience in meaningful dialogue.
Social listening may seem like a huge task once you get started but, in the long term, it will allow your company to become leaner and more responsive to your customers as well as to the market in general. Social listening, however, is much like your SEO strategy in that it is a long term and every evolving process. A good social listening strategy can also prevent your people from burning out. They will be able to tune in to the lulls as well as get fired up when they know that your customer base is fired up and ready to go.
-Written by Kevin Sawyer