Social Listening vs. Social Media Monitoring | Part 1

Social Listening? Monitoring? I feel like these terms are thrown around a lot and can easily be confused. Whether you are an individual or business looking to expand their reach with your posts, let’s breakdown the difference between social listening vs. social media monitoring:

The definitions of each come from Social Insider

“Social media monitoring relies more on caring about what your customers say about your brand by monitoring mentions and tags, while social media listening means understanding your audience’s needs and rethinking your marketing strategy to fulfill them.”

Mecca-Amirah’s defintion:

As a social media manager, a large portion of my time is monitoring my company’s social, similarly to community management. Across the channels, I review the times we are tagged/mentioned to see if there are any opportunities to respond, opportunities for content, and also some reputation management sprinkled in there. This type of action is more passive, focusing on the short-term than utilizing this knowledge for a more focused approach.

Which introduces us social listening, a very strategic and targeted approach that only looks at your company or brand but the industry itself. For example, I currently for a CPG that sells Health and Beauty products, so I socially listen for news and trends within the industry, setting benchmarks with our competitors.

Benchmarking — For this example, let’s say there are 10 top competitors within my industry that I want to take note of. Once identify the companies, I will review their social media following across all platforms to assess where my company stands. Also, my company has Brandwatch/ Unmetric, which allows to gain a better understanding of my competitors engagement, content performance, and overall growth. Once I see where my company stands in comparison, I can set goals for each bucket (impressions, CTR, engagement rate, followers, mentions, Reach etc.) and also use this opportunity to social listen for terms and trends.

Social Listening — Now let’s continue this totally hypothetical example (laughs in HR-dont-kill-me). Okay, let’s say I am looking to see where my company is being mentioned when it comes to skin, more specifically, for people who want anti-aging solutions. While listening, I want to see: what demographics are talking about the term, where in the world they are, what platforms they are on, the sentients (emotions) of this topic, the # of times its been mentioned, what’s being said, which account(s) are talking about it and who are the top influencers, trending topics, and more.

I just realized I can talk about this allll day so I will share more about this example in Part 2. Stay tuned!

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