• Kayla Stinnett

A Guide to Social Listening

Updated: Aug 4

Listen twice as much as you speak.


It’s an old quote that still rings true today, especially regarding Social Listening. Think about it. In our daily lives, being a great communicator means being an expert listener. After all, thoughtful communication comes from understanding what the other person wants.


The same applies to marketing. If businesses aren’t actively listening to their customers, how can they really know what they want?


Enter Social Listening.


According to Sprout Social, Social Listening refers to analyzing the conversations and trends happening around your brand and your industry and using those insights to drive marketing strategies.


Social Listening goes beyond guessing what your audience needs and provides insight into what they want. So let’s break down how you can use Social Listening to guide your marketing strategy and guarantee success for your business.


What is Social Listening

As we mentioned before, Social Listening refers to examining the conversations and trends within your audience as it relates to your business and industry. But in layman's terms, it simply means listening to your audience when they discuss your business, products, or services. Social Listening also requires actively listening within your industry, providing industry insights and competitive analysis.


Using Social Listening

Social Listening is a rich marketing tool that can benefit your business's bottom line. It can be used to understand and engage with your audience, gather key industry insights, and identify opportunities for collaboration.


Social Listening helps you better understand what your audience wants from your business. An example would be a customer posting a photo of your product or service on Instagram and raving about it - or complaining about it. Or you might spot a conversation where people are looking for solutions your product or service could provide.


Social Listening can also be used to gather essential product or service insights. Try analyzing common hashtags or discussions relative to your market. At the same time, competitive analysis requires surveying a competing brand or product. Simply put, you’re using cues within your industry and learning from your competitors’ successes and failures.


Identifying opportunities for collaboration is also a great way to use Social Listening. Listening to conversations in your industry allows you to identify thought leaders and content creators in your space. Connecting with these people and finding ways to collaborate and interact with them is essential. But always remember that you should find ways to organically interact with them rather than just barging into their space. Think of communication as a two-way street where their comments about your business are your invitation to interact.


Social Listening Tools

Many social media management tools combine social listening, scheduling, and analytics into one platform. We prefer using Later because it allows us to monitor our brand, hashtags, mentions, and more. It’s an all-inclusive tool that doesn’t break the bank and is always at the forefront of new features.


But if you’d rather use another tool, there’s plenty to choose from. Try looking into Buffer, Hubspot, and Sprout Social.