How Social Listening Can Make Your Job Easier


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Businesses large and small use Twitter and Facebook to communicate directly with their customers. Social media allows us to announce new products and campaigns and build free brand awareness. However, social media isn’t a one way street. Customers can use social media as easily as companies, and when they complain on social media, everyone can see it.

Regardless of your company size or industry, you need to monitor social media. This is a pretty universally accepted concept, but implementing a formal process in your organization for social monitoring can take be a lot more difficult. A lot of organizations think of social media as an add-on to traditional processes rather than a transformative trend that’s going to change the way businesses operate forever. The fact that you’re reading this on our blog suggest that you fit into the latter category – as we do – and still face resistance to social media integration with business processes. Here are a few reasons we’ve found to work well to help the resistors see the light:
Collecting Customer Feedback
Rolling out customer satisfaction surveys can take a lot more time than simply reading through tweets and Facebook posts. Some companies, such as Square, set up Twitter feeds just to collect customer feedback. Responding to a survey can take a lot more effort than shooting off a quick Tweet, and a lot of customers have figured that out. Customers also tend to get incredibly vocal on social media in the heat of a moment of frustration with your products. They put their feedback in their own words, and you can learn exactly when, why, and from whom complaints or praises arise. You can then adjust products or processes to fix errors, or you can reward customer loyalty that you may not have discovered. You could spend three weeks building a traditional case study, or you could spend three minutes creating a Storify of great customer quotes. Which would you rather do?
Gauging Real-time Reactions
When you launch new campaigns, tracking them in social media is just as important as tracking them in your CRM. CRM and marketing automation tracking show you who engages with your campaigns as well as what they click on, but social media allows you to get real feedback. Companies may have figured out how to manufacture shares and likes, but you can still collect the personalized messages that your customers send about your campaigns. Social media also allows you to quickly take advantage of news events that are trending so you can gain publicity in areas that you’ve never before been able to. Twitter has completely disrupted the PR industry. Getting a press release on the wire is expensive and can be timely. Releasing it on your blog and promoting it via social media can get it front of a lot more eyes a lot quicker, and a lot cheaper.
Enriching Sales Presentations
Social media offers sales reps an unbelievably easy way to validate statements without using statistics. If you want to prove that people are unhappy with your competitor’s product, what better way to do so than to compile a list of angry tweets and put it in your presentation? If you want to demonstrate that marketing executives face a debilitating problem that you can solve, why not display tweets from real marketing executives facing those problems?
Unveiling Connections
Perhaps one of the most untapped benefits of social media is it’s ability to reveal connections that you wouldn’t otherwise know you have. LinkedIn is great because it shows you your professional network and the professional networks of your colleagues, but what about all your personal contacts that aren’t on LinkedIn? Your previous employer’s network? Your education network? Your reference customers’ networks? LinkedIn has a ways to go before its a universal connection solution, but even so, finding one person to whom you’re connected can make the difference between a three month nurturing process and a quick reference phone call.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Koka Sexton
Koka Sexton, Social Selling Evangelist and Sr. Social Marketing Manager at LinkedIn, is one of the most recognized social selling experts in the technology industry. A career in helping companies use social media for lead generation, creating new opportunities, and engaging customers. READ MORE at the LinkedIn Sales Solutions blog.


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