According to Jacques du Bruyn, MD, Flume Digital Marketing and PR, for a while now, social listening has been a topic of discussion. However, it hasn’t always explained what value it can offer businesses.
Social media usage is an important tool. The general public uses social media and this creates one of the most useful tools of all: insight. Understanding what customers and clients are saying is as important as running cashflow – it is the lifeblood of business.
There are many case studies that exist of businesses that have become redundant because they have not understood their audience. Business cannot evolve if it does not understand its audience
Social media usage allows businesses to understand customers beyond a purchase or sale. Listening to and observing conversation online not only opens a window into needs and wants but also what customers are concerned with.
It also opens an understanding into the general environment in which a business operates. Often businesses are able to offer innovations and alternatives based on understanding what it is that customers want and are looking for. This is the essence of the coveted sentiment ‘client-centricity’.
Social media listening tools are fairly accurate
As machine learning gains momentum, social media listening tools are able to understand human intention far better than just a few years ago. This allows for a far more accurate insight into what customers are saying.
Businesses are able to deploy social media and online listening confidently in order to understand the following:
1) What are our customers saying about us online?
2) What are our potential customers concerned with?
3) When do our customers engage on social media and how often?
4) Which social platforms are our customers on?
5) Which geographic locations are the most prominent?
There are many more questions that social media listening tools can answer, however the above provides a brief insight into how social media usage can be an important insights tool.
Social media usage as a content planning insight
The more a business’ customers use social media, the easier it is to understand what type of content is being consumed and engaged with. This provides a deep insight into the type of content that a customer would like to engage more with. Businesses can use this insight to plan effective content marketing strategies that not only achieve marketing goals but that actually speak to customers’ needs. This in turn increases engagement and ultimately brand affinity.
Businesses of today have no excuse when trying to understand their customers. Businesses of yesteryear had to hire research companies or purchase insights. However, today all it takes is deploying a social media listening tool that monitors social media usage. This provides a window not only into the customer but also the environment and world in which a business operates. Social media usage has become an increasingly important tool for businesses and should be top of mind of any marketing manager’s strategy.