Social Media holds tremendous power and there are many tools out there which are designed to help you unlock its full potential. In this article, we will discuss some of the best social media monitoring tools available today.
The best way to use social media in order to improve your business is to listen to what the users have to say about your brand, your competitor’s brand, and the overall digital market. Finding and tracking down conversations on various social media has always been a problem for advertisers working in digital marketing. Fortunately, you now have a number of tools you can use to monitor the social media and use that information to further improve your marketing strategy.
What exactly is social media monitoring?
Social media monitoring or social listening is a practice of continuous tracking of online conversations in order to find information regarding:
- Other brand-related terms
This process is used to find out more about specific target markets and audiences, such as potential prospects and competitor customers. Digital marketers use the social media monitoring practice to understand how well customers perceive a specific brand, analyze their particular behaviors and identify any issues they might experience while using your products and services. Some of the tools used for this kind of work include:
Brandwatch is an excellent social listening tool which monitors and collects data from various different sources such as blogs, forums, news sources, review websites and social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter. It accurately measures analytics such as age and gender radio and user interests and uses this information to add additional context to different online conversations. Furthermore, Brandwatch alerts its users whenever a specific term they’re looking for is mentioned in a conversation, which is pretty useful for real-time monitoring.
Google Alerts is a particularly useful tool for keeping tabs on specialized topics. It does so by regularly searching for any mentions of the terms in questions and sends you an e-mail every time there are new results available for your particular search. The usefulness of Google Alerts lies in the fact that it keeps you up to date without having to constantly search for the same terms. Simply visit the Google Alerts page, type your specific keyword query and you’re all set.
Hootsuite has proven itself to be one of the most popular free social media monitoring tools available on the market. It covers multiple social media networks such as Facebook, Foursquare, Google+, LinkedIn, Twitter and WordPress, all at the same time. It allows users to create live streams for each of the keywords used in the query. Its team management options are particularly useful in situations when a social media account is handled by multiple users. The monthly cost is just $9.99, with various advanced plans available to choose from.
This tool allows you to keep an eye on all of your brand mentions on various blogs, forums, news and media sites and web pages in real time. It can monitor millions of different sources in up to 42 languages. What great about Mention is that you can interact with specific conversation directly from the main dashboard and, if you want to, assign those conversations to any member of your team. Although this is a paid for service, they do offer a free 14-day trial.
Keyhole is extremely good at tracking hashtags, keywords, URLs and even usernames. At the time of writing this article, Keyhole only works on Instagram and Twitter. Although it doesn’t have the same functionality and coverage as some of the tools on this list, it collects and catalogs posts and other data in real time. It also offers demographic information including heat maps which measure activity across the entire world. All the data is represented by a timeline which shows spikes and flows regarding the posting frequency.
A popular solution for social media aficionados, Social Mention tracks over a hundred different social media platforms. Unlike similar tools available on the market, Social Mention is completely free and it still offers one of the best data analysis features. Additionally, it can display hashtags, keywords and website mentions in top lists for better visibility. The only downside that comes with using this tool is that it doesn’t offer continuous monitoring, which means you have to make a new search every time you need an update.
Hailed as the most controversial and provocative social media monitoring tool, Klout is used for measuring influence via Twitter engagement. While some people claim that it is unusable and that the scoring system is oftentimes completely inaccurate, some swear by it and use it on a daily basis. It works by grading your social media engagement abilities with a mark ranging from 0 to 100. It’s an excellent way of monitoring what people think about your particular business and to see the things that influence them the most. All your posts can be adjusted according to the target audience’s interests and easily used to increase the engagement rate.
These are just some of the social media monitoring tools currently available on the market. Some are free, while some require you to pay a monthly or a yearly fee. But have in mind that just because some of them are free, it doesn’t mean that they can’t outperform those that require paying. Try a couple of them out and find the one that best suits your needs. Even if it does require a monthly free, it’s a small price to pay for the amount of information you receive. And that information is what you will be using to further improve your marketing strategy and word on increasing the exposure of your brand.