Social Listening for Fashion Retail Industry

The industry which witnesses changing trends almost every week is fashion retail. We can safely say that the only thing constant in the fashion world is that fashion never goes out of style. With changing times, the fashion industry is also embracing technology. Here let’s talk about how social listening for fashion retail can help you monitor fashion trends, handle controversial fashion choices or disasters, and to find fashion influencers.

The scope is never ending with social listening for fashion retail. Most of us like to glam up once in a while. Social media is full of influencers, amateurs seeking advice, fashionistas looking for new collections et cetera. If you keep listening, there is no end to the kind of insights you could gain.

Social Listening keeps You Fashion Fresh

“Great design comes from interaction, conflict, argument, competition, and debate” – Onur Mustak Cobanli

Fashion and style are personal and unique, of course. It is a designer who makes the world aware of new clothing possibilities. In fashion, the buyer persona is often defined by the stylist, social listening might not be of help here. However, social listening helps you gauge public opinion and other marketing insights like your share of voice, response to campaigns by you or your competitor.

Create an index to keep track of your competitors or the leaders in your industry. Luxury fashion brands like Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Armani, and the others have effective strategies to make their social presence known. Studying their social visibility, sentiment scores, and other competitive metrics can help you gather ideas for designing your own social media marketing strategies.

Vogue and Gucci engage their clients via fashion podcasts. Chanel has been setting quite an example when it comes to social engagement. They don’t just stream podcasts, they even have movies about the history of their company – a fine example being “Coco Before Chanel”. Monitoring the chatter surrounding such brands will help you judge the weaknesses and strengths of rival brands and strategize your own marketing mantra.

Chanel Podcasts - Social Engagement tools Chanel Podcasts review

Understanding Your Stakeholders

The world of fashion deals with a lot of people – your customers, brand endorsers, investors, influencers, celebrities, and media to name some. Whether you aim to build a high fashion clientele or make yourself known more like a street style brand, you will need to know the influencers and the key people talking about such things.

A fashionista interested in your product is more likely to become your shareholder/investor than others. Planning for a big launch? Hiring a celebrity, who is known for her chic dressing, to launch a boho collection might confuse your target audience.

Listening to social chatter and tracking impressions can help you identify the important people in your industry. And, social media listening tools make it simpler. While tracking the comments, a social listening tool will give you the influence scores and impressions of every commenter.

More than just finding the influencers, social listening allows you to know more about the customer base, the demographics and the interests of your target audience.

Fashion Weeks/Events – Get the News before Anyone else

Every brand grows by learning from others. There are times when monitoring fashion weeks, a campaign or a fashion event may help you gather key insights about your industry.

A moment to moment real-time social monitoring tool helps you track what is influencing or impacting the conversations around the event. Whose spring-summer collection is topping the charts and why so?

Social Listening for Fashion Events

Doing What it does Best

Lastly, social listening is the ultimate tool for feedback. While fashion is artsy, it might not impress all your customers all the time. Listening for feedback is essential, especially so in the fashion world. It can be your new handbag line or some celebrity line of clothes you launched. Gauging the chatter around your product helps you analyze the sentiments and work on the pain points. Simply put, social media listening provides you feedback which can help you deal with negative feedback well in time.

Social listening for fashion line launch

In conclusion, every learning and marketing opportunity is up for grabs with social listening. Social media and the fashion world are closely knit. Every trend, new sensation, and fashion story is religiously covered on social media. All you need to do is to listen!


10 Points to Consider before Planning your Social Media Listening Project

Information is critical for discovering opportunities. Data seekers are getting smarter, and so is technology. Insights essential for your business is quite commonplace today – available from sources like the internet, social media and review boards. Social media listening is the process of gathering all such data at one place and analyzing it to give you the business intelligence required to discover future opportunities and scopes.

Social media listening

Why Should You invest in Social Media Listening?

The foundation of your marketing strategy begins with analyzing customer satisfaction data. Social listening is a tool which helps you in the process. Gathering all the data related to your purpose, mining the relevant ones, structuring the data, analyzing it for insights and presenting you with the report. All the hard work is done by social media listening while you take the back seat for a while.

There are examples galore, of companies employing social media listening to address critical issues and projects. In brief, social media listening keeps track of your performance for you and provides a benchmark for your brand as well by keeping a constant eye on your competitors.

4 Tips from the Social Media Listening User Manual

All said and heard, social media listening is not a genie from the magic lamp. It will help you reap benefits when you follow some useful tips, like the following:

Why do you want to monitor Social Media?

Social listening has multiple uses. Be it to gain customer feedback, or to track your campaign #hashtags. You can use it for all these purposes or concentrate on one. Whatever it is, make sure you are clear about your needs before initiating your social media listening project.

Target and planning Social monitoring vs social listeningGoal Setting

Similar to the previous tip, this is about planning what your project is aiming to do? This helps you chalk out a real plan of action. Say you want to improve your overall online reputation and currently 75% of your customer comments are positive, you should work to have actionable goals on how to increase the figure to 85% positive comments and so on.

Choosing the Right Social Listening Platform

Being aware of your social listening needs can be really helpful when you have to choose from about a hundred options. Your needs help you define what particular features you require out of a tool. There are many social media listening tools out there with varied functionalities. Making an informed decision is the key to a successful campaign.

Spend Time on the Results

Building a demanding brand presence online is a tough task especially in the world of web 2.0. Starting a keyword search and abandoning it midway only to recheck it after a month will do your company no good. Spending some quality time with the results each day is what will go a long way in helping you formulate more powerful brand campaigns.

6 Major Things to Look for in a Social Media Listening Platform

Social Listening adds value to your business but only if you invest in the right kind of tool. Any marketer will tell you that the thumb rule for selecting a social listening tool is, to have your own goals and needs defined to choose the most suitable tool. The best one wins. If you are in need of some guidance with the selection, here are some of the key features you should look for:

Data Coverage

There are simple tools to track your likes and retweets, and there are tools with really fancy high-end features ranging from reports to video analysis et cetera. A full league of other tools fall in between these extremes. If your company needs an extensively detailed analysis, go for the tools which crawl the most data.

Customized Reports

Most of the tools in the market are now offering a report. Opt for a report which is fairly comprehensive, easily understandable, and even customizable to your needs. A clean report would be lucid with most of the analysis presented well via graphs and pictorial representation. Pages of text analysis in a report is a big negative since no busy marketer has enough time for that.

Social Listening Platforms covered

Some social media listening tools may not have the option of listening on all social media platforms. For instance, TweetDeck works only with Twitter data. However, if your company’s presence is limited to Twitter alone, this may work just fine for you. If you are a fashion brand with the majority of your client-base active on Instagram, investing your time on TweetDeck will reap you no benefits.

Industry-specific Listening

Every industry has a specific set of problems, goals, and needs. A one-size-fits-all approach will not help when you expect your business to grow. Social media listening tools with the facility to extract industry-specific data and create benchmarks and reports for you are definitely a better choice than others.

Sentiment Analysis

Marketers focus on sentiment analysis when they initially adopt social media listening. One of the most prominent features of social listening tools is sentiment analysis. Every comment and conversation that a customer posts online has an undertone. Manually judging each one of them can become tedious, sentiment analysis helps you understand what percentage of your customer base is happy with you and what is going wrong.

Customer Service

Like every service provider, the tool which has the best customer support and can extend quick help for troubleshooting is the one you should choose. Proper guidance in case of doubts is essential and a mark of the right service provider.

Armed with such information about the features of an ideal social media listening tool, you should be able to make a sound decision. Yet, if you want to test the waters first, you can always opt for the trial versions of a promising tool to judge it better before making a final choice.


What is Social Media Monitoring and Why is it Important?

Social media monitoring is the act of identifying and gathering information regarding your brand mentions and customer sentiments online. The sample size for such data collection is massive. It encompasses all the social media platforms, review boards, and messenger forums.

Manually tracking all the user-generated content about a brand is quite impossible. It’s impossible without software tools which can crawl sites and index them which make the content easily trackable and enable searches based on queries or using conversation strings.

Track Precise Content with Social Media Monitoring

Social media monitoring tools are designed to work with what users type in a query, using a brand name, a location, a general phrase or an event mention.

The tool uses Boolean operators to filter out irrelevant content and home in upon specific terms to precisely identify the relevant bits out of complex strings in a query. Some tools allow searches which get results from across sites, anywhere in the world and in different languages too.

Importance of Social Media Monitoring

The modern age is defined by the use of social media and the internet as a whole. In today’s wired world, every conversation is digital! In a survey conducted by The Advertising Research Foundation, FOX and DB5 (with a sample of over 12000 twitter users, both male and female), it was found that about 80% users had mentioned a brand in their tweets in the measured period.

Social Media

This goes to show how much you would be missing when you fail to monitor social media sites for your brand mentions. However, if you aren’t yet convinced of the power of social media monitoring, here’s a list of some benefits of social monitoring:

Real-time Feedback

Feedback can be positive or negative. Both help to set your strategic direction and guide you on your path to success. Seeking feedback is a great way to invest in improving your product, service or overall strategies. Feedback does not necessarily have to be about your existing product. You can also seek feedback from a closed focus group on social media about a campaign. Tracking everyday brand mentions gets you very useful feedback without your having to actively seek it. This real-time feedback is great as you can surprise your customers by covertly listening to their wishes and demands. Modifying your product accordingly and releasing it in as a new improved version would pleasantly surprise them.

Dominoes Case Study - social media monitoring

One of the greatest examples of how a company listened to customer opinion to successfully turnaround its product comes from the world famous pizza restaurant chain – Domino’s.

Domino’s tapped into social media, gathered evidence of how a number of customers complained that their pizza crust tasted like cardboard and re-invented their pizza.

Identify Your Advocates and Critics

Brand advocatesSocial media monitoring gets you in touch with your greatest fans as well as your harshest critics. Embracing both can help you develop your business strategy. The critics help you improve, and the fans help you to advertise your brand. Interacting and engaging with both these groups makes them feel valued and who knows, maybe you can turn a critic into a fan. When you engage with your fans, you encourage and excite them about your brand all the more. They may turn into active ambassadors for your product and that can positively affect your sales.

At Par with Trends

Say you are in the food business serving Italian cuisine. Your town is hosting the year’s biggest food festival, and all the restaurants are vying to put up their stalls. This upcoming food festival in your town is one of the trending stories on social media. But you failed to catch the buzz because you did not monitor social media platforms and as a result, missed all the action. Popular trends related to your industry help you to stay informed and to plan your marketing efforts.

Social media monitoring is not a shallow activity for passing time. It falls under the umbrella of social intelligence. Once you’ve started with social media monitoring, gaining crucial business insights using social listening and social intelligence, isn’t so hard.


What is Social Engagement?

Human beings love interactions; we are social beings after all. No wonder social media is trying to capitalize on our socializing nature. Social engagement could be both offline or online, with people meeting each other and sharing thoughts feelings and emotions over a spoken or written conversation.

Social Engagement is a new advertising tool being adopted by businesses, as they move away from the unilateral style of traditional advertising and learning to interact with customers and forge long term relationships with them.

Social Engagement

What makes Social Engagement so Popular?

Every consumer loves to feel special.  Actively engaging with your customers on social media is an easy and viable way to make each and every one of your customers feel special all the time. Responding quickly to social media reviews and chatter is not a very difficult task, especially when you consider how it makes a consumer feel valued. Even as they protest loudly, customers place their trust in you to offer them a solution.

Engaging with customers has traditionally been an offline task, but social media engagement has made it simpler yet more efficient. Stop trying to delight your customer from Harvard Business Review reports that customers resent having to contact the company relentlessly to have their problems solved and having to describe their issues repeatedly. Understandably, offering a solution to a problem was a little more complicated in the olden times than it is now.

Social Media Engagement Benefits

If social media itself is a boon for marketers; social media engagement adds to it. What can be better than garnering attention for your brand from a hundred thousand people, across the globe? Social media engagement lets you interact with them and to take them into confidence, staying agnostic to time zones, geographies, gender or race.

Social media engagement has more than a few benefits to offer:

Cost Effectiveness

Social media reaches a vast majority of people. Engaging people from around the world via traditional means can get logistically tricky and expensive. But, interacting with an audience base on social media practically costs nothing.

Boosts Brand Awareness

Brand responsiveness makes customers feel valued and happy. Keeping customers happy would earn your company, brand advocates and more sales in the long run. Positive word-of-mouth is the best sales pitch one could wish for. Social media engagement helps bring in more sales and spread your company’s fame and that too organically.

Social Customer Care

In the world of social media-savvy people today, most customers turn to social media to denounce or praise a company’s services. Social media engagement is a quick and hassle-free mode to get your customer’s attention. A quick response to a negative comment could save the day, while positive feedback can be broadcasted as a badge of honor.

Customer Service Positive Review Social Engagement

Customer Service Negative Review Social Engagement

Customer Retention

One of the primary reasons for marketers to opt for social media marketing is to gain brand awareness and trust from the audience, building a potentially loyal customer base. When a customer sees daily activity on the company profile, with proactive answers to customer issues and questions posted there, with follow-up feedback, they naturally feel drawn to reckon with you. That could be the beginning of building a large customer base.

Improve Your Social Media Engagement Strategy

Imagine how you would engage with people at a party or a get-together. You chat with people, exchange information and so on. Social media engagement for a company is on similar lines with different objectives. You build your presence online, chat with people, exchange information – crucial information that can help you get a sense of customer perception. Also, you share information with customers facing issues when using your product or service.

Easier said than done. Building an engaging presence online might sound easy but can be a tough job. However, even the toughest of jobs have a starting point. Here are some steps you can take to slowly build and improve upon your social media engagement efforts:

Social Listening

Listening to social media chatter to understand how people perceive you or talk about you is extremely important before you initiate a conversation with them. Social media marketing runs smoothly if you listen first, plan your strategy and then engage with your promoters as well as detractors. Without a plan, you might end up disrupting the social reputation that already exists for your brand and create more problems for yourself by taking a defensive or belligerent tone, as many businesses have found to their cost.

Start the Conversation

Once you know the facts and figures about what your customer sentiment is like, you can initiate real conversations, using a respectful tone and adopting a positive attitude, aimed at problem resolution. Social media engagement does not necessarily mean a customer has to pose a question/problem and you would then continue the conversation. You could yourself start a casual social media feedback session or a Facebook live Q&A session or a similar forum.

Start the conversation

Identify Brand Advocates

In the initial stages of social listening, you may have found some supporters who like your brand’s products or services. Identify these people and engage with them more often to turn them into your brand’s advocates. They are like your brand ambassadors, the happier they are the more they influence people to join you.

Events, Giveaways, Social Posts and Activities

The best thing about social media is that it’s like an ongoing fest, like a Tomorrowland festival, around the year. Someone or the other is hosting a giveaway or an online event, or a webinar and so on. This attracts attention and traffic to your cause. It also helps to improve your overall brand image.

Response Time and Receptivity

Last but not least, there’s a golden rule of social media engagement. Be receptive to your customers and respond in time’. A quick reply shows your interest in the customer and might stave off a disaster. The longer you take to reply, the longer the negative comment stays online. Others might see and change their minds about your brand and think of you as an uncaring and unresponsive brand.

Management Response

Once you have started on your social media marketing journey, it is essential that you take care of all its aspects like social listening and social engagement. Attention to such details could add up to make you successful on your social media marketing efforts.


Listening Platforms: An Important Part of your Social Media Management Arsenal

Companies are increasingly digitalizing their marketing efforts, which need to be managed well if they are to achieve their goals and succeed in their efforts. There are multiple platforms and tools that you can use to market your brand, especially with reference to your social media management.

With the current exponential growth in social media users, marketers today often wonder how to manage their social media profiles for optimum benefits. In today’s post, we try to answer that question.

What is Social Media Management?

Simply put, social media management refers to the process of managing your brand’s/content’s interaction with your audience, across various social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube and so on.

Social Media Management

Social media management may typically include creating, scheduling, analyzing and engaging with content and conversations posted online. This could become tiresome and a lengthy process when you do not adopt any social media management tools.

As per DOMO’s Data Never Sleeps 6.0 report, more than 2.5 x 1018 bytes of data got created each day in 2018. Tracking such an extensive database to gather relevant brand mentions and analyze them daily is a daunting task. This makes social media listening tools an essential part of your social media management arsenal.

Why is Social Listening Important for Efficient Social Media Management?

The primary focus for most brand marketers is the management of their brand’s reputation. Keeping track of one’s brand mentions, and engaging with them over social media is easy and achievable with the support of social media management tools like social listening.

Before investing a lot of time and effort in social media marketing and management, you would want to know how a social listening platform benefits you:

  • The easiest way to manage your accounts: Social listening platforms help you monitor and analyze all the chatter around your brand.
  • Engage with your audience in real-time: Social monitoring tools have in-built features that enable you to engage with your audience and to schedule timely responses.
  • Customer insights: By providing an in-depth analysis of the chatter, these tools provide the most accurate customer insights, helping a brand to improve their services and thereby, their relevance to customers.
  • Increases credibility: A brand which listens to its customers, responds to their sentiments and reacts in a timely fashion is bound to make a mark in the hearts and minds of people.

Now that we have extensively discussed how the tools benefit your business, here is a handpicked list for your reference.

The Best Social Media Management Tools 2019

In case you want to test the waters, here is a list of the best social media management tools for 2019:

Hootsuite

A popular social media management platform, with over 10 million professionals as active subscribers. Hootsuite allows you to analyze, engage and manage your brand reputation and social media campaigns over various social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, WordPress, YouTube.

It has a user-friendly interface which hasn’t changed much since its inception. Hootsuite offers a free plan; hence it could be a wise selection for you to start with.

Hootsuite - social media management

TweetDeck

Tweetdeck is yet another social listening tool designed specifically for Twitter. However, it has a lot of useful features which allows keeping a check on your brand and your competitors’. Be it a keyword you are looking for, or a hashtag, TweetDeck can help you listen to the chatter around it.

Like Hootsuite, TweetDeck is a free service too. An excellent platform to try out.

TweetDeck - social listening tools

Agorapulse

Agorapulse is the full package for social media management – it lets you engage with your audience, track brand mentions, schedule and create posts across all social media platforms. Besides, it gives you dynamic reports which are open to customization options.

This platform:

  • Gives you a visual preview of every post you create before you publish it.
  • Helps you categorize the content you have created and schedule it at specific time slots.
  • Provides bright and attractive-looking reports.

They do offer a free trial version if you want to check the Agorapulse social media management experience.

Agora Pulse

Mention

Mention is a social monitoring tool. that allows you to track your brand, find influencers, study your competition and the market data across social platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram. The real-time push notifications feature helps you manage your brand round the clock. However, the most striking feature is that Mention caters to its customers across 42 different languages.

Mention - social listening tools

No digital marketing campaign is fully complete without social media marketing, of which social media management is one key aspect. Once you master that, you are truly prepared to help your business succeed in the digital domain.


Sentiment Analysis: A Comprehensive Guide

The innate ability of humans to understand emotion and sentiments sets them apart from every known species. Machines today are trying to mimic this quality. We, humans, display sentiments in everyday sentences that we speak. Currently, businesses adopting sentiment analysis tools in a bid to analyze the tone and sentiments expressed in the opinions of their consumers.

In a world where many gigabytes of data is produced every day, creating vast oceans of it, opinion mining is not easy unless guided by artificial intelligence. However, why should companies worry about consumer sentiments? How does sentiment analysis work? What are its limitations and advantages?

Let’s start with the concept of sentiment analysis and then try to understand its value proposition for business owners.

What is Sentiment Analysis?

Sentiment Analysis is a subset within the umbrella of Natural Language Processing (NLP). It is the process of understanding the opinions and perceptions of your consumers using the data mined from social media, review boards and others.

Dove Body Positive Ad Campaign

The famous personal care brand – Dove, had initiated a campaign to advocate the need for embracing a positive body image, for women. The campaign’s idea was to depict the shapes of ordinary women rather than professional models. In a bid to represent the various shapes and sizes of a woman, they had released bottles of varied shapes. Some of these were hourglass-shaped, some pear-shaped, some thin and slender and so on. However, what seemed like a novel thought turned out to be quite the opposite. The campaign was perceived as offensive by many women and eventually had to be taken down. If Dove wasn’t paying attention to the sentiments of its customers, the campaign could have caused real damage to its brand.

Consumer perceptions play a vital role in ensuring the success of your company’s campaigns or product launches; they actually decide your brand’s health.

Why is Sentiment Analysis Important?

“A satisfied customer is the best business strategy of all” – Michael LeBoeuf.

Your customers are the reason for your existence, so their voices, opinions, and needs should matter. Sentiment analysis helps you gain clear insights without having to seek direct feedback or validation. Consumers today express their views about their experience with a brand using the internet, social media, review boards et cetera, and these are accessible to the entire world. One bad review can cost a company its reputation, which may have been built painstakingly over years if not decades.

Using social listening to tap all the data around your brand and processing it further for opinion mining can provide you the following benefits:

Crisis Management

Detect an issue and take control before it becomes a pain point and hinders potential future customers from converting.

Brand Health

Sentiment analysis is a great tool which offers a quick way to judge your brand’s reputation, your weaknesses, strengths.

Key Strengths - Sentiment AnalysisKey Strengths

Chatter with a positive connotation helps you identify and understand your key strengths and build on them.

 

Strategic Planning

Sentiment analysis is a window which drills down to identify and show you the specific problems. This helps you strategically plan your corrective measures.

Uses and Applications of Sentiment Analysis

User-generated content can become your best friend for sentiment analysis. Multiple corrective measures may suggest themselves while analyzing the data available via internet sources. Sentiment analysis helps with different aspects of brand reputation management including:

Brand Monitoring

Keeping an unwavering eye on every comment, every review, and analyzing it to understand the tone can be tedious and hinder fast-paced action, without adopting a tool. Continuous monitoring and opinion mining are necessary to maintain the reputation of your organization amongst the public and competitors.

Business Intelligence

Sentiment analysis does a lot more than tell you whether your customer is happy or disappointed. Data mining provides you a breakdown of the exact fault lines, tracks the overall perception of the brand amongst the masses, and tells you whether the growing chatter in the marketplace is in your favor or against. Decision making becomes a little more easy with such insights within your reach.

Customer Service

Customer Service

There’s no doubt that the better your service is, the better your chances are, of retaining customers. Gaining loyal customers results in spreading positive word-of-mouth which brings you more customers, and the cycle continues. However, as per a McKinsey report, about 25% of customers shift to a competitor brand after just one negative experience. Sentiment analysis helps you deliver on your customer service promises and to tailor your business to be more customer-centric.

Product/Service/Campaign Analysis

Customer opinion can make or break your product reception or even the success of your marketing campaigns – which in turn can ruin your brand’s image. Seeking frequent feedbacks and working to eliminate your current shortcomings serves to satisfy your customers and make them believe that your brand cares for their voices.

Market Research

Sentiment analysis also assists with prototyping for any market research, before a product or campaign launch. It is extremely essential that you become aware of how the audience receives the message before you let your brand get involved more.

Sentiment analysis grows more accurate each day, yet there are a few challenges which become evident and troublesome at times. The challenges include the inability of the tools to judge the true sentiment in cases of sarcasm and irony and polarity used by humans. For example a sentence like:

“Great service. 1 hour for a cup of coffee – Unbelievably fast delivery!”

has words like great and fast delivery which have a positive connotation to the tool, but not for us in this context. Sentiment analysis tools lack the capability to understand such sarcasm, unlike the human mind and could flag such comments as positive. But, as the model keeps getting trained, machine learning keeps helping the tool to evolve, and these challenges are bound to vanish over time.

All said and done, AI as a field is still young but growing very quickly, and so is sentiment analysis. Despite the few drawbacks, it can be applied to a multitude of business problems and prove to be a marketer’s true best friend.