September 29, 2016

This is a guest post from our friends over at Brand24. They’re passionate about using social media to help find new leads and help your existing leads and customers, and that’s something that can be applied to any online business, no matter what you’re selling. Enjoy the post and let us know if you have any questions or feedback! Turning it over to Magda now…

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Why does social listening help turn prospects and leads into happy customers? The answer is quite simple.

Social listening is such a flexible tool that it improves many areas of a business, ranging from brand monitoring, through research, to sales and customer service.

One tool to rule them all. 🙂

What is social listening?

Let’s dive into what social listening is.

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Social listening, also known as social media monitoring, is designed to track keywords of your choice on the Internet. They can relate to your business, product, resources, competition, industry, trends, or funny cat videos. Basically, anything you want.

Social listening tools monitor all publicly available content on the Web, including social media, blogs, discussion boards, websites, news sites and so on.

It collects your keywords in real time so you immediately see them in your dashboard.

Why is it important?

Here are seven things that you can accomplish with social listening:

1. Monitor your brand reputation

Monitor your brand reputation online so that you know what your customers talk about your business. Then you can interact both with happy and unhappy customers, analyze data, draw conclusions and adjust your strategy to improve your brand reputation.

Social listening allows you to track and handle problematic issues before they escalate into something you don’t want. Also, you can easily detect brandjacking – where someone could hack into your account and start using your social media accounts to communicate their own messages!

2. Increase your brand awareness by approaching influencers

Social listening allows you to increase your brand awareness and social media reach through influencers. You track influencers possibly interested in your product or service, approach them and, if they’re interested, they spread the news about your company to their communities.

3. Monitor your competition

Follow your competition’s activities, product development, strategy, and marketing to be up to date with the industry and fit in.

4. Engage with your community

It’s easy to engage with your fans when they use the official handle, however, a lot of conversations take place without the official handle. The only way to spot them is to use a social listening tool.

5. Provide customer service

With the development of social media and the Internet, consumers expect quicker and quicker assistance. As of now, 64% of customers expect a real time assistance and social media monitoring tool allows you to provide it as soon as possible. Customers tend to post a complaint in social media and with a social listening tool you’re are able to spot it even without the official handle.

6. Seek inspiration for your content

Let’s face it. Every now and them content managers struggle with writer’s block. A social listening tool gives you the chance to conduct research on any given topic. You name it!

7. Analyze your marketing efforts

With a social listening tool, you get to analyze your marketing efforts. Let’s take a hashtag campaign you’ve been running. You can get a detailed data about its social media reach, sources of traffic, the number of interactions and more.

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Combining social media and sales

Social listening makes it easy and effective to approach people in the need of a given product or service without wasting resources on the uninterested.

How is that possible?

It’s all about listening to customer needs. With social listening, encouraging and pitching has been replaced with listening and finding people directly interested. Social listening tools allow to find your potential customers in the places they hang out it. Then, it’s easy to engage in a conversation, answer questions and start building a relationship.

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This one just begs for a reply!

Consumers expect quick action and answers and social listening is the best tool to take care of them.

Getting started with social listening

There are a number of apps that exist to help you with social listening – some work only with specific social networks (i.e. Twitter Mentions) and others are multi-purpose and also allow you to post to social networks as well (i.e. Hootsuite and Brand24).

Brad 24 is affordable, thorough and provides 100% real-time notifications so you can immediately engage in a conversation related to your brand.

How to find leads and turn them into happy customers

To sum it all up up, here’s a quick list of action steps to take with social listening:

    1. Find conversations related to your product or industry. Monitor social media, blogs, websites, discussion forums and other places where your potential customers hang out.
    1. Establish yourself as an industry expert, provide answers and solve problems as quickly as possible.
    1. Monitor your competition to learn from their mistakes, improve your product and present it to your audience.
    1. Reach out to unsatisfied customers ASAP and try to help them out.
  1. Reward the most loyal and engaged customers with discounts, gifts and make them spread the news about your awesome company!

Hope you enjoyed this guest post by Magda at Brand24! If you have any questions or feedback, we’d love to hear from you in the comments below. 🙂