Social listening is a rather new term referring to the process of gathering, interpreting, and analyzing all important information about a brand, a product, or a company that could be found on the internet. It seems it has a lot to do with marketing. But how important is it actually for brand marketing?

The way a company, a product, or a brand presents itself on the social scene is very important. With a good set of information spread out publicly, the company attracts more clients, wins new partners, and gains more trust among society. On the contrary, if there is unfavorable information, the company’s reputation is at stake and it may lose clients. In the past, people relied on newspapers, television, and radio. Today we have a much more advanced instrument suited to provide information about a brand – the internet. The internet data of a company is usually unstructured. Social listening deals with that. It collects customer data – the trail customers leave behind using the Internet, checks its authenticity, adds structure to it, and helps companies understand the online conversation over their brand. Knowing what is said about a product or a service, encourages companies to improve their product or integrate new advertising strategies.

Social listening agencies such as RILA GLOBAL CONSULTING use methods of analysis and monitoring. When a company is running a marketing campaign to present a new brand, campaign analysis serves as feedback and shows how people react to the campaign. The opinions that competitors share about the product on social media are the subject of the competitive analysis. When a certain marketing event, like a virtual meeting, is held, event monitoring shows the reaction of the virtual audience – how many people visited the meeting, who participated by expressing opinions or just by watching. Social listening also checks how often the brand is mentioned in online discussions regarding the concrete industry, how many hashtags of the brand are there, or how many new followers it has as a result of the discussions.

Sometimes the results from social listening may show a negative attitude towards the campaign. The company can explore the reason behind the negative feedback and use the gathered intel to change people’s attitudes. If the company wants to have a brand preferred by customers, it can change prices, product descriptions,s or other products.  

If a company wants to perform effective social listening, it has to understand the audience, to know what kind of customers are attracted to the brand and its products. It also needs to identify the type of information it wants to learn. It is important to use social listening tools as they will help gather the most significant parts of data. Once the information is collected and analyzed, the company needs to develop a strategy for the future development of the brand and the company itself.

Nowadays we can’t even imagine there could be a company that isn’t mentioned, at least once, on the internet or social media. When a company presents its brand actively on the internet, it definitely can’t go without using social listening instruments. They give crucial information about customers’ reactions to the brand and society’s attitude as a whole. Therefore, they are a must-have for every company.