No matter what, your social media content needs to be inspired by your community. How do you know what your community wants? You listen.
Social media listening is the process of discovering what people are saying about your business and industry. Not only do you need to pay attention to what is being said about your company but also to what is being said about your competitors. Social media listening is not just a marketing necessity for large companies but for local businesses as well. A company like Uber needs to stay up to date on conversations concerning its brand which includes topics that are not relevant to the transportation industry. Last year, Uber’s involvement in politics forced Uber to find a new CEO to reduce public scrutiny. The hashtag #deleteuber was trending on Twitter due to an alleged connection with an unfavorable government action. The negative conversation on social media about their brand and their associations caused Uber to lose business. Of course, not all conversations about your business will be as obvious to notice but to know of and/or control the conversation about your brand is just as essential in other scenarios. A local candle shop can benefit just as much from social media listening as Uber can. There has been a growing awareness that many candles become toxic when burned. However, let’s say this local shop only sells clean burning candles. In this case, the candle shop should search social media platforms for terms relevant to toxic candles. They should then join the conversation and reply to questions and concerns that would help build their brand. Educating their online community about the difference between toxic and their non toxic candles would build their following and reverse misunderstandings for them and their entire industry. In just listening and informing one’s community, a business can increase brand awareness and website traffic without any advertisements or promotions.
Where is your audience?
Talking to a blank wall is pointless. So in order to listen and communicate efficiently, discover where your community is already posting and sharing information. Observing key terms will enable you to see where conversations are already taking place. You can then use established influencers to help connect with the community.
On your audience’s most popular platforms, search relevant terms, join a chat, create a group and/or follow hashtags. When contacting your audience be sure to solve problems, provide expert information and implement how your company is the answer. Joining the conversation will help build your brand, your online presence and drive audience to customer conversions.