Social Media Listening
A better understanding of how your customers use your products (or don’t use them) can help you make critical changes to your offering, and / or how you communicate with them. By listening, you can uncover new opportunities you wouldn’t of even possibly thought of, or discover features you thought would have been big hits, that have ended up not mattering to your customers, or even being a complete failure because it wasn’t something your prospects were not even asking for.
Knowing what’s important to your customers can help you better plan offers, promotions, and contest to further drive business and lead to sales. Instead of expensive product launches, you can test out new ideas cautiously and receive feedback quickly, by keeping your ears and eyes open on the rhythm of your customers and find out what they feel is missing from your product or service.
Remember: Customers don’t want a preventative; they want a solution, especially women. They want what they buy to do the job right the first time, without any additional accessories to buy.
How to listen:-
There are lots of free ways you can listen to your customers and future prospects. There are many online paid enterprise systems available with costs ranging from a few dollars to thousands of dollars per month. If you’re new to listening, try these free resources first:
If you visit any social network and type a phrase or keyword into its search function, you will see what people are actually saying in real time. National and global companies might search the entire web, while local and regional businesses and organizations will want to use geographical filters to find post only in their demographic area.
Remember, not just to search for your company brand name but for your competitors as well, and most important, type in the search bar the phrase or words that your customers would actually use. For instance, if you’re an insurance agent, sure you can search social networks for the name of your agency. But wouldn’t it be more helpful to search for the actual phrase your prospect would use, “cheap car insurance in California.”
In conversations on social networks in your own home town you can find real people in real time sharing their needs with others? If you’re a dentist, you can search for your name, or the name of your business, but it would be more advantages to search for the phrase “need to find a dentist in ……”
There are dozens of listening platforms available. To name a couple of good ones start with our focus and radio6.
Major enterprise listening systems:-
Meltwater Buzz – Meltwater.com
Parature – Parature.com
Radian6 – Radian6.com
Sysomos – Sysomos.com
Vocus – Vocus.com
In dating with understanding, there’s always the guy who knows how important listening is, so he start the date by saying, “Tell me about yourself.” After his date talks for a minute or so about herself, she says to him, “How about you? And he proceeded to talk her ear off for the rest of the day, telling her all about himself. The guy may claim he listened to what she said, but the truth is, he was just going through the motions, not really carrying it through in a meaningful way.
That’s not listening. In order to be a “likable” organization that effectively listens to its customers and prospects, you got to fully integrate listening into your job or agency functions.
By listening, listening some more, and then responding, greater sentiment comes from customers, whose loyalty grows. They, in turn, become better advocates for your products. It’s as simple as this: customer talk; company listens and acknowledge. Customer is then happy, as is everyone else watching and listening, since the conversation is public domain. Who would you buy a product from – a company that obviously, publicly listens to its customers or a company that seemingly ignores them not utilizing social networks to directly interact with the public?
It’s not just about listening to customers talk about your company – it’s listening for prospects using keywords and phrases that identify themselves as great potential customers.
Depending on how big your company or brand is, there is virtually limitless numbers of conversations and comments that you can tap into.
By: Fay B. Castro