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Using Social Media to Listen to your Audience

listen to your audienceKnowing your audience is key in marketing, and one of the best ways to get to know them is to listen to your audience – find out where they hang out online and spend time with them. Ask questions, then see how they respond. Answer questions, too. Get involved and you’ll soon have an inside secret way to get information about your niche that you wouldn’t have otherwise. Monitoring conversations online can be a real boon to your business, increasing your bottom line exponentially.

Social media is not going away, and neither is the internet. Therefore you may as well use it as much as you can to improve your business. The fact is, you need to monitor the conversations going on to ensure that your customers are happy and that the entire community is well informed. Here are a few tips to guide you through using online conversations to grow your business.

Keys to Listen to Your Audience

Use Keywords – To monitor social media accounts, come up with some keywords for your niche, including your business name, product name, and your name. If you want, you can also use your competitors’ names in order to find out more information about them as well, as this can become a valuable tool for you.

Control the Message – If you really want to take social media conversations to a new level, seek to control the conversation. Simply lead conversations by redirecting them if they’re going off track or getting into issues you’d rather not discuss or have discussed.

Identify What You Want to Monitor – Before starting your monitoring you need to know what you want to monitor. You may want to separately monitor your product, your reach, your competition and so forth, so you might want to set up separate conversations to ensure that you can keep track of each part you’re monitoring.

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Identify Where You’ll Monitor – You probably won’t have time to monitor across all platforms at once. Pick the platform that has the most impact on your business right now. For example, if you’re using Twitter or Facebook more, focus on them.

Determine Impact – Some product mentions or conversations are truly inconsequential to your brand and you don’t need to jump in with those types of conversations. Only jump in and guide the conversation when it really matters to get the most efficiency out of your time invested.

Search Individual Sites – On each site, use your keyword list to search to see what comes up. You can also set up a Google Alert to give you information from numerous sources any time your keywords come up.

Use Online Tools – You can use tools that will help you with monitoring such as TweetDeck or Sprout Social. These tools can help you set up monitoring that’s easy for you to analyze. There are a ton of great tools for you to review at: https://www.brandwatch.com/2013/08/top-10-free-social-media-monitoring-tools. A couple of my favorites are: TweetDeck and Social Mention.

Gather Data – When you gather data, the best thing to do is to put it into a spreadsheet. This way you can get all the information together so that you can analyze it and use it more easily. This will help you determine which information is important too.

Using social media to monitor the buzz going on about you and your business or niche is an important part of becoming the go-to person in your area of expertise. The more you know about the conversations that are happening, the more you’re going to appear knowledgeable about your field. So get out there and join the conversations – and LISTEN IN! The knowledge you gain can prove to be valuable to your business growth.

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