How to monitor social media for business
“Social media doesn’t work! I reposted my blog post and nobody is responding. People like my Facebook page but none of them buy anything from it! But it looks like my business closed down if I abandon it so I’ll just have an intern do it for me.”
A few years ago, many businesses held this attitude toward social media after not seeing immediate return on their social media investments, but such attitudes are laughable for many of today’s businesses. But many still do not quantitatively analyze and optimize their social media efforts, instead relying on writing “what I think people will like” because “I’ve known my customers for years.” Luckily, social media monitoring tools take out the uncertainty by using advanced algorithms to measure exactly what people are saying on social media. But what should you analyze and how can you use SMM tools to make your social media monitoring campaigns better?
- Analyze customer sentiment. Most SazBean readers understand the importance of sentiment analysis but I can’t leave it unmentioned. Sentiment analysis tells you whether or not your customers are speaking about what you’re saying positively or negatively. Algorithms take linguistics knowledge (who said a B.S. in linguistics isn’t useful?) to look at the language people use when talking about something in a positive or negative light. They then sort this into positive and negative statements, among others.
- Learn where people are talking about you. Sentiment analysis by itself is useful but it can be amplified by knowing which social network people are talking about you on. If most of the conversation is on Facebook, then it might make more sense to focus your PR there. Or maybe you have a niche product aimed at Google employees and most of the conversation is happening on Google Plus. With good SMM tools, you can also segment your sentiment analysis by social network. You might discover that people on Facebook like your PR campaign but people on Twitter do not or vice-versa.
- Proactively create positive sentiment. Don’t just sit on your hands once you figure out what works and what doesn’t! If people are slamming you for something you’ve done, go into damage control. Apologize when you make a mistake swiftly and honestly. Reach out to individual customers and turn critics into fans. Brands may have lost some influence over their brand since social media became popular but they don’t have to lose control over it.
Want to dive deeper into the world of social media for business? This post was adapted from the white paper Learn Social Media Monitoring in Fifteen Minutes by Murray Newlands. Download the white paper for free!