Why Does Social Listening and News Monitoring Matter?

If you read our blogs, you know we are big proponents of using social media for public relations. Another side of social media that is important for PR is social listening.

Social listening and news monitoring track social media platforms for mentions of your brand, product, service or industry. But that’s just the first step. To be effective, the information then needs analyzed to discover insights and opportunities.

Social Media Listening Chart

This chart illustrates the many ways PR pros use social listening to help the brands they work with.

Are you listening? If not, you should be. Let’s take a look at why social listening and news monitoring are important and why you should be using them.

Social Listening Helps Attract Customers

The real advantage of social listening is to attract customers. Online analytics gained through social listening provide valuable insights that enable you to create content that is more focused and relevant. This, in turn, helps attract more online interaction and eventually increased sales.

In addition to deeper interaction with those already familiar with your company, social listening can also help you find new leads. Monitoring keywords relevant to your goals can help locate potential customers who are actively interested in your product or service. Once recognized, you can use inbound marketing efforts to reach these leads.

Manage Your Brand Reputation through Media Monitoring

“What you don’t know won’t hurt you.” You may have heard this or something similar from your parents or teachers about ignoring gossip. But, when it comes to the media, that idea is just dead wrong.

To be effective in your messaging, you need to know what people are saying about you. That includes both good and bad.

The tricky thing about branding is that you don’t get to control your own reputation. People form their own opinions about brands. That’s why social listening and media monitoring are so important.

In order to adjust your brand’s reputation, you need to find out what the prevailing opinion of your brands is. If it’s all good, then you can reinforce that. However, if what you’re seeing isn’t so positive, you may need to adjust your business strategy.

As the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) says, “Listening and taking action is the basis of PR and has become even more important during these times of crisis, when so much is at stake.”

Social Listening Allows You to Anticipate Public Opinion

In your professional life have you ever wished for a crystal ball to see into the future? Recognizing trends and shifts in public opinion is vital, but it’s often just a guessing game.

Social listening gives you a big leg up in that game. Using social listening and news monitoring to collect information from various media sources is like a modern crystal ball.

You can gain valuable insight into specific industries, competitive brands or a personal brand. Then, you can use that insight to anticipate what direction public opinion is going. The final step is building a messaging strategy around shifting those opinions.

When done regularly, adjusting your messaging ahead of public opinion can be a game-changer.

Use Social Listening to Measure Impact and Stay Ahead of Competitors

What are your competitors’ strengths? Where are they failing? These and other questions can be answered through social listening and news monitoring.

You can use social listening and news monitoring to compare your company to the competition. In fact, what people think of your competition is just as important as what they think about you. This information should be tracked regularly to accurately measure impact.

Impact can also be measured by tracking other various metrics. For example, earned media vs. paid media. Or, how many stories were picked up vs. how many stories were actively pitched, and so on. Measuring the impact of a variety of metrics is a big advantage of social listening.

When it comes to social listening, Nichols Brand Stories is always ready to lend an ear. Contact us through our Nichols Brand Stories site, or simply reach out to me anytime at mbakle@wetellyourstory.com.