Social media has become a vital cornerstone of marketing and business today, and it is entirely possible to track the ROI and effectiveness of social for sales.
This ever-growing cosmos of data and knowledge provides savvy business owners with a superabundance of information on how to build customer relationships, create compelling content, generate new leads, and excel at every other aspect of crafting a vibrant and robust brand; vital material for small companies fighting the good fight against corporate monoliths.
The means to unlocking a near infinite amount of intelligence on your customers and prospects is just three words away: Social media listening.
By leveraging powerful social media monitoring tools businesses can uncover the type of information needed to understand their audience in a more intimate manner. This information helps to refine marketing messages, engagement tactics, and sales efforts to ensure maximum ROI.
The truth is that social listening, when used effectively, can be one of a business’s most forceful drivers in a multitude of areas.
Social Media Listening Strategies
Check out these 4 ways that social media listening can drive sales for SMBs.
Create Customer-Focused Content with Influencers
Content is still one of a business’s most effective tools in driving awareness, traffic, and sales; that is, if the content is relevant to your audience and adds value or satisfaction to their lives.
A big problem in content marketing today is that many brands have been sold on the narrative that more content equals more traffic. As a result, content production is often focused more on quantity than quality. This has created a one-sided conversation for a lot of businesses and tons of content that nobody wants (or needs) to read.
Leveraging social media listening tools, however, can reopen a dialog.
Powerful social media monitoring tools such as Brand24 integrate valuable features like various filters, brand mentions, and discussion volume charts that enable a brand to track down and identify engaging conversations around an industry to help uncover trends, pain-points, passions, and other useful information.
This heightened awareness is the type of knowledge required to boost conversions and sales to the next level as SMBs can use this type of tool to:
- Help content creators conjure up fresh, engaging ideas for any target audience.
- Craft content that is much more relevant to your audience’s needs and desires, and therefore has the potential to boost revenues.
Through social media listening, brands can easily identify what prospects and customers are already talking about and pivot their content strategy to align with these interests.
This can naturally bring in more traffic to a business website. Granted the site it well-optimized, brands should be able to then draw visitors into its sales funnel or to a checkout page.
It is also wise to leverage Facebook Advertising with your revamped content. With this platform, brands can target extremely niche audiences that are looking for solutions the content addresses; this can potentially gain you some new, loyal customers.
Outside of Facebook advertising and content ideation, however, social listening can assist your brand in tracking down the people who are leading the conversation on these germane topics; this opens the door for hyper-engaging campaign collaborations to take place.
Influencers are powerful voices within the social circles your company inhabits, so getting these guys and gals in your corner is an invaluable asset. MindFuse proved this when the company uncovered that 92 percent of consumers trust influencers over ads and celebrity recommendations.
Capitalize on the Competition
No matter your industry, competitive analysis is a vital piece to understanding where your brand fits into the market and how it can take up a larger share.
By utilizing social media monitoring, brands can gain valuable insights into their rivals’ tactics, campaigns, customer sentiment, and most importantly, their shortcomings.
Researching the conversations taking place around your competitor’s brands enables your company to fill the needs they failed to. This is easily accomplished by reviewing your competition’s mentions on various social platforms, identifying the negative ones, and figuring out how your organization can improve upon the other business’s bungle.
Using this strategy can enable your brand to more intimately understand the opposition’s offerings, features, and value propositions so that you can then sharpen yours into a superior version.
Conducting competitive research in this way lets you know what you are up against while simultaneously uncovering what customers want most and what they aren’t getting in terms of products, services, content and other critical areas.
Strengthen SEO Rankings
Search engine optimization is a challenging field for most small business owners. Using social listening, however, entrepreneurs can uncover a treasure-trove of data to help boost rankings and climb the SERPs.
By listening to the conversations had by followers and other prospective customers, brands can identify powerful keywords, peripheral phrases, and casual terms they may have missed otherwise.
These keywords and phrases can then be used to optimize existing and forthcoming content by leveraging them in titles, URLs, file names, and meta descriptions (for users who are reading this info).
Additionally, social listening can help brands to identify burgeoning trends and hot topics to capitalize on with its content offerings or hyperlinking to high profile pieces to help amplify rankings.
Cultivate Superior Brand Sentiment
Bad customer service has always been the bane of a brand’s existence, but these days, there is no hiding behind excuses. In the age of social media, one mismanaged interaction can act like a virus, spreading across news feeds and costing your brand handfuls of customers in the process.
Social media listening is vital in the social epoch. With this toolset, brands can identify customers who have had a poor experience and reach out to them in a highly visible space.
The key here is to do whatever you need to do to rectify the situation and save the relationship. And that includes owning the mistake or issue and making good on whatever ails your disgruntled customer.
This will do two things for your brand:
- The customer will have their experience transformed and potentially become a brand advocate because of the pleasant and potentially unexpected turnaround.
- It will show others in the consumer’s network that your brand cares about its customers’ experiences and is worthy of patronage. This can give quite the boost to a brand’s image.
Not leveraging social media is like playing professional football without a helmet; it’s almost a guarantee you’re not going to survive without serious suffering.
Use these smart listening technologies to observe your customers, your competition, and what the playing field looks like. This provides a new edge for your brand to emerge as a full-blown winner.
Mobile Phone Photo via Shutterstock