Nowadays there’s no surprise in knowing that people are communicating directly with brands or organizations on social media more than ever before. In many ways, that’s strange news—it means more proximity in getting queries answered, encouraging brand awareness, and flaunting all the excellent things about your brand in front of the target audience. But it also means that there is much more going on that requirement to be monitored and analyzed.
Why monitor your social media, you ask? It’s an important part of understanding who’s saying what about your brand, not to mention putting you in direct contact with your customers (and potential customers). Basically, you can’t afford not to. Here’s why.
Before news is news, it’s talked about on social media channels.
If you want to stay on top of trends in your industry, not to mention customer needs and potential future niches, you need to monitor social media. There’s no more immediate way to judge how your customers are feeling about various issues and how best you can serve them. And when new ideas or technologies hit the market, you want to know about them straight away so you can incorporate them into your business and marketing plans.
Social media allows you to instantly respond to complaints.
If your business is active on social media, its likely customers will reach out to you when they’re unhappy. One way to mitigate potential disaster is to respond promptly and efficiently, acknowledging their concerns and offering a solution. A polite, understanding response can do wonders for an irate customer who might otherwise spread negative feeling about your company. Of course, if you’re not monitoring your social media, you’ll miss out on this opportunity.
A note of caution, for those responding to unhappy customers: don’t feed the trolls. Some people just want to cause a ruckus, and if that’s the case, you really don’t want to provide more fodder for the fire. Learn to recognize when people just want to make a scene, and avoid engaging in lengthy debates with these individuals.
Social media monitoring is a great venue for showcasing all the good you do.
Got a new press release out? Did one of your employees win an award? If you’re ready to shout good news from the rooftops, social is a great place to do it. You can reach hundreds—or even thousands—of people instantly, and they can easily share the news with others. If you’re lucky, your accomplishments could even go viral, leading to more exposure and good press for you and your business. Don’t forget to retweet/re-blog/re-share—and say thanks!
If you want to get into your prospects’ minds, social media is where to do it.
By keeping an eye on social media—both your own assets and the popular trends—you can gain great insight into what your customers want, the questions they’re asking, and the problems they’re facing. This gives you the perfect mindset with which to go back to your business and determine how best you can serve your target market. And because there’s such a great variety of social media outlets, you can take a look at a variety before deciding where would be the best place for you to focus your marketing energy.
Your competition is on social media…shouldn’t you be, too?
Obviously you need to have a more coherent strategy than just “everyone else is doing it,” but it’s true that a great way to take a look at what your competitors are doing is to see how they’re interacting with customers on social media. Are they using methods that would make sense for your company, too? Are they falling short in an area where you could become an expert? You’ll never know unless you’re monitoring.
Keeping track of what’s happening on social media in your field can be time-consuming, but it’s absolutely necessary if you want to stay ahead in the game. Need some help with your monitoring?