Improve Content Marketing with Social Listening

Posted by Cydne Stewart Aug 11, 2015 9:30:00 AM

power-to-improve-marketing-social-listening_1000x576You are a marketer. You know how important content (and its distribution) is to the success of your digital marketing. You know the ins and outs of digital marketing require attention to detail, premium process, and project management. You know you have the ability to provide information to your website visitors, leads, and customers. The difficulty comes when deciding what that information is and how your audience consumes their most valued content.

As the digital revolution storms onward with its ever-changing white hat techniques and the ousting of black hat techniques, it is now more important than ever to shove the shiny objects into the supply closet and put on your listening ears. The power of listening is one that many forget about. Oftentimes, businesses become so consumed with the ability to publish when and where they want, they forget about the most important part of their success—their audience.

Disregard for the users or content needs could be the demise of your content marketing efforts. Is your company creating content on a whim? Or have you developed a way to leverage the power of social listening in a manner that benefits both your content production process and the experience of your most important users?

There are many ways to find out what your customers like and don’t like. There are ways to track behavior online via analytics and other platforms that track clicks, time-on-page, and even heat maps to show where the most interactivity happens on websites. These tools are great and can prove to be very beneficial for improving the user interface and their overall website experience. What these can’t tell you is the subjective information that helps a brand thrive in the digital marketing environment.

social-listening-infographic

So, how can you find out what your customers need? Enter social listening. The ability for social listening to improve your marketing efforts across the board is undeniable. It is known that 93% of shoppers’ buying decisions are influenced by social media. This is because 90% trust peer recommendations (#Socialnomics). You have the ability to listen to the entirety of these recommendations by simply listening to what your community is saying about your products or services. To drive this point home, more than 18% of customer service requests are initiated via email. That is a rather small amount considering more than 13% of requests are brought to the attention of a company via social media (Bluewolf). As over the phone gripe sessions fade into the distance, social media is unleashing FOMO (free of missing out) all over the world wide web.

Yet, a minimal 20% of CMOs leverage the power of social media for social listening, engagement, or brand presence (MarketingLand).  This lack of attention can land you in a situation where the content you are producing, and the conversations you are engaging may amount to little return on investment. If you are not talking the language of the individuals you are speaking with you can’t possibly believe they will understand your messaging. What’s more, you can't expect them to recommend your brand, share your content, or speak the language you have produced within your silo of marketing.

How can you listen better on social media to boost brand awareness, marketing performance, and word of mouth marketing organically?

Listen socially. Here are some tips and tricks to get you started:

1.Set goals to help measure and track what data and feedback you are collecting from social listening.

2.Establish key issues your business needs to address in order to improve current content marketing efforts, customer service, and brand success.

3.Be sure you have an individual or team assigned to monitor all social platforms and hold them accountable for the information they glean.

4.Develop a process to collect social listening data and feedback.

5.Set up a process to develop valuable insight from your social intelligence efforts.

6.Have a set of locations your social media manager or social insights team should be looking for customer feedback.

7.Understand the industry terms, trends, and #hashtags, so that when you are listening you understand what is going on.

8.Be sure that each metric and each data set is helping you move the needle on ROI.


And there you have it. Eight simple steps to getting your social intelligence initiative on the road to success. Be sure to maintain your community engagement while you are listening on any social platform. Each part of your marketing mix, regardless of what elements you have included, should build upon each other, not take precedence over one another. The analytics and data are available for any brand as long as customers are utilizing social media. Don’t miss your chance to provide industry-leading service, insight, information, and innovation.

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Topics: Thought Leadership, Marketing, Inbound Marketing

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