Social media monitoring has become a primary form of business intelligence, used to identify, predict, and respond to consumer behavior. Listening to what your customers, competitors, critics, and supporters are saying about you is key to getting great results from your social media campaigns.

social media monitoring

The trick is: How do you find all of the information online that’s relevant to you and your interests and bring it back in such a way that you can make use of it all? Here are a few questions to ask yourself:

Question 1: What are you monitoring?

The first step is to know what’s worthwhile to monitor and what types of searches will net you the best results. It might take a bit of trial and error, but here are some ideas of where to begin.

Brand or company monitoring

  • Your name or your brand’s name
  • Variations of your brand’s name
  • Potential misspellings of your brand’s name
  • Names of the most active/visible members of your company
  • Mentions of specific campaigns you’re running
  • Your catchphrase, slogan or tagline

Industry or topic monitoring

  • Key words or phrases that describe your industry or interest
  • Key words or phrases related to or complementary to your industry or interest
  • Frequently used industry hashtags

Question 2: What is Your Budget

Once you know why you’re entering social media monitoring and what you want to monitor, you’ll want to enter your searches into a tool that can keep an eye on your queries for you and serve up the results.

Tons of social media monitoring tools are out there, but you need to decide how much you’re willing to spend. Several free tools exist, as well as some paid. Here’s a wiki listing all of the social media monitoring tools available. Here are a few free ones:

Question 3: What Are You Looking For?

As you sort through your social media results each day, you may find it difficult to pinpoint one single area to focus your insights each day. That’s okay! Here are some results you might come across to help your business grow.

  • Sentiment: Are people saying mostly positive or negative things about you?
  • Feedback: Feedback on your product or service is always useful.
  • Questions: Are you seeing the same frequently asked questions about your brand or industry? Maybe there’s an opportunity to create a piece of content that can help answer these questions.
  • Press opportunities: Know what journalists in your industry are working on, what questions they have that you can answer and what they like and dislike when it comes to being pitched.
  • Influencers: Who’s voice resonates the loudest in your industry?

What successes have you had with social media monitoring?

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