Social Listening vs. Social Monitoring

“Your brand name is only as good as your reputation”

The tricky thing about brand reputation is that it is difficult to achieve but extremely easy to lose. People are not complacent about receiving average services anymore. They turn instantly to online review boards and social media to let the world know about their negative experience. This could easily affect or ruin your brand reputation unless capitalized upon by using social intelligence tools like social media monitoring and social listening.

Online Reputation Social MonitoringA study by Dimensional Research claims “90% of customers say buying decisions are influenced by online reviews” and 86% customers confirm that their buying decision is influenced by negative reviews. By listening to and monitoring all the chatter related to your brand, you could save your brand’s reputation through timely action and responses.

Social listening and monitoring can provide you with the business intelligence required to manage and protect your brand’s reputation. But let’s first distinguish between Social Listening vs. Social Monitoring.

How is Social Listening Different from Social Monitoring?

Social media monitoring and social media listening are often used interchangeably. And though, they mean almost the same, there is a subtle difference between the two.

Data is not information” yet “Information is just bits of data

Social listening and monitoring revolve around the notions of data and information. Social monitoring is essentially nothing but the data that you collect from social media, social listening yields the actual information.

Puzzle analogy for Social Monitoring vs Social ListeningSocial media monitoring presents you with all the bits and pieces of an unsolved jigsaw puzzle, but social listening joins every piece at the right place to give you a complete picture. Simply put, social media monitoring can be called a subset of social media listening.

Social monitoring includes searching for and gathering data from review boards, social media sites, and messenger forums.

Social listening helps you analyze the data collected, defines your future course of action and plans in accordance with the insights obtained.

Why Use Social Listening and Social Monitoring?

In a rapidly urbanizing world, the number of internet users is constantly increasing. It is essential to keep listening to the concerns of your customers and respond to them before they turn into a pain point.

Your social media efforts might be doing great on the surface but mere likes do not reflect real success. Let’s look at some of the key reasons why gauging the chatter is beneficial:

  • Online Feedback (positive/negative) helps you to know how your customers perceive your products and services
  • Audience Engagement is possible, when we have feedback, whether positive or negative
  • Brand Advocates can be found among the customers who provide positive feedback to spread a positive impression about our brand
  • Proactive Customer Support is possible in real time if we respond to the issues and concerns of customers
  • Competitor Analysis is possible as we see where they stand with their customers and learn about the reasons behind the popularity of their products and services
  • Lead Generation is possible by establishing a positive connection with existing as well as potential customers.

These insights are highly valuable to a brand manager, as they proactively manage their online reputation.

How can Social Media Listening and Monitoring Help You?

Remember we said social listening helps yield information from the data collected through social monitoring?

Target and planning Social monitoring vs social listeningThis information can help you design an effective action plan to manage your online reputation and to strategize about other functions of your business too! When there is a considerable amount of negative chatter about your customer service, most of them would mention the reason for it. It could be due to long response time, unsatisfactory response or even a rude or uncaring attitude. It can help you chalk out a plan for changing the processes of your customer service department.

Social monitoring measures the scope of future marketing needs. You can gauge the reach your brand has on social media and know how many users are talking about you. This knowledge can help you design future marketing strategies and campaigns.

Business intelligence and social media listening are almost synonymous today. Gain insights into customer satisfaction and react proactively in real time to build a solid online reputation, without incurring huge costs.