Social Media Listening is not a new art of doing business. It is deeply rooted into the traditional market research. The only difference is in the method of data collection. Traditionally, you had sets of questionnaires to be filled by your selected customer segments but not anymore. Your customers are already talking about your brand without your permission.
Research shows that 75% of people talk about brands on Social Media and 26% of consumer are complaining on Social Media. Our own research has shown that 80% of people who complain on Social Media expect a response. But the sad situation is that 56% of customer’s complaints are ignored by the brands.
Not knowing the purpose
Not knowing why you are listening to your customers is really a wrong way to start your listening activities. You need to have a clear call to action and resources dedicated to carry out those actions.
Most often companies spend time in listening with out having any bandwidth to take actions. You need to have an ACTION PLAN. Traditional market research always has a clear agenda, why not have similar agendas for you social media listening too!
Knowing your limits
Social media is not a magic wand. It has a lot of limitations. Brands investing in social media need to understand these. The most common assumption, which brands have, is that everything is measurable to pixel perfect. Nope. That’s not the case.
There are many things, which is really difficult to keep under a microscope. In social media, one of the most delicate aspects is the privacy and brands need to respect that. Know that not all information about a person can be accessed and displayed for only your eyes.
Not thinking out of the box
There are many use-cases of social media listening, but brands are not really thinking out of box. Most brands are still worried about measure their buzz, ROI, conversions and many other such vanity metrics. But listening means going beyond it.
Brand can use listening to identify complaints, discover opportunities, get feedback, identify influencers, and discover contents. Listening can have impact across your business – marketing, customer service, innovation, sales, human resources, leadership etc.
Doing Google is not listening
Many brands are absurdly funny when they remark that they do social media listening. Basically they say that there team use Google every day to discover complaints and respond. No, that’s not listening! That’s like saying, “I listen to customers when I want to.”
Brands need to have a continuous monitoring system because that makes all the difference. We will never know when the next trend is going to pick up or when one of your frustrated customer is going to hit upon you on Twitter. Only by constantly listening to social media, you can achieve quick response time. And using Google once in a day is not going to help you.
Its part of your business function
This is the most common reason why brands are failing. They do not take social media listening as a serious activity. Rather than passing this responsibility to qualified professional with background in data analytics, or research or communication within your organization, we find out brands employing unqualified workforce with little or no understanding of social media.
Social Media Listening is not a rocket science, it’s a simple action of observe, deduce and act. Brands need to simply employ this mantra with seriousness.
So I would like brands is think over these key reasons and work around each of them. Once you have check marked all of these points, there is no reason why you should not have success. You simply have to adopt and adapt with it.