Social media is a huge pot of ideas, communities and opinions, all shared continuously. And it’s all happening without you even knowing it. There is an awesome amount of data that gets created and shared…, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and 365 days a year.
So how do you find the information that matters to you in this massive pile of data? How can you extract what really matters? Let’s take a look:
Social media monitoring – the basics
The answer to this issue is social media monitoring. It’s the strategy that lets you know what is happening on social media platforms, what others are saying about you and what is important for you. Also known as social media listening, it employs various tools and tactics to bring you the information you need. Let’s go over the specifics:
- what to monitor
this is the first thing you’ll need to know: do you want to monitor brands, companies, communities or entire industries or topics? Think about the names you want to monitor, catchphrases, hashtags, potential misspellings, frequently used terms or buzzwords.
- get the tools to help you out
as soon as you know what you’ll monitor, you will have to gather your tools – the actual software that will help you do the monitoring. There are some great free online tools*, like Google Alerts, mention or Talkwalker. These tools let you search for a phrase, its related words, minus or plus other words and then get periodical reports to your private email inbox. Of course, there are other social media monitoring tools that do come at a price, which include detailed reports, multiple phrases and advanced tracking features (a good example is Hootsuite – https://hootsuite.com/)
- know what to look for
As we previously discussed, social media is absolutely massive – you simply cannot monitor everything that’s going on. Focus only on your niche, several companies, individuals, influencers or communities. The great part is that you’ll never know what you may find. It may be a post that got viral, a controversial topic or a new product launch. You’ll have to look for the opportunity to create a relationship and build trust. Identify problems, issues and find a solution. Provide answers, find a resolution and help people. Pay attention to the questions, the comments, the content and the feedback that gets popular or viral on social media. This is where the action is, and where you have to be in order to get noticed
- refine, refine, refine
Once you get what social media monitoring is all about, and you get some results, focus on getting better. Use other phrases, expand your monitoring and pay attention to subtle changes in your reach. Try to synthesize the information you receive and adapt your social media strategies accordingly. Create a spreadsheet with your results and check for patterns, weak points or other areas that need improvement. Always makes sure you know what goes on in the fabulous social media world.