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How Data is Driving Social Listening

What do you think is the cost of one negative review on social media? Well, a research by Convergys Corp. found that one negative customer review on social platforms can cost a company about 30 customers! With the proliferation of social media, consumers are using the social platforms to not only interact with friends and families but also actively leveraging these platforms to make purchasing decisions. They are using social media as a resource to also vent out their anger or show their appreciations to the brands.

It, therefore, does not come as a surprise to see that companies have formed well-thought out strategies and plans to manage the risks and rewards of these platforms.

Check out the image below – you will be surprised to know that this is the image of the room where the Nestle Digital Acceleration team (DAT) monitors the social networks and conversations around the brand – with rows of huge flat-screen panels mounted on the walls, the team monitors millions of posts, conversations, sentiments, and derives strategies to effectively engage and communicate with the customers.

image1                                                              Image Courtesy:

What can social listening offer?

Social listening can provide insights on –

  • What does the media say about you?
  • What are the market trends?
  • Competition analysis – What is being said about your competition and what is your competition saying about you?
  • Sentiment analysis – What are the sentiments of the consumers about your brand (positive as well as negative)
  • Influencer analysis – What are the influencers or the brand advocates talking about you?
  • Social conversations – what are the social conversations about your brand?
  • Get insights into that the problems that your prospects are looking to solve
  • Find new target markets for your products

Features of Social Analytics

  • Volume – A lot of unstructured data in large volume flows on social media. It is important that this data is collected and analyzed in a short period to create value from that data.
  • Velocity – Social Media data streams at a very high speed and needs to be captured within seconds.
  • Variety – Data comes in multiple formats such as text, audio, video, images, stock ticker etc., and such structured, as well as unstructured data, needs to be well-captured and analyzed to derive meaningful insights.
  • Variability – With peaks and drops in conversations around a particular topic, the load of data is often mixed up and needs to be managed appropriately.
  • Complexity – With data coming from multiple sources, it needs to be appropriately linked, matched, connected, and related. Only through such proper management, the data can offer useful analytics.

Measurement metrics for social listening

  • Mentions and reach – The number of times the mention comes up and how many users it reached
  • Share of voice – Percentage of online conversations around your brand
  • Sentiment analysis – Detecting the positive or negative reactions of the audience around your brand
  • Sources – The primary sources of conversations around your brand
  • Mentions and shares – Top shared content around your brand, mentions from brand advocates or influencers
  • Keywords and phrases – The topics associated with your brand
  • Geographic location – Where are the conversations around your brand happening

How Social Listening is helping brands?

  • Based on its listening to the public conversations around “mortgages” and “mortgage policies”, a large retail bank created an early warning indicator of potential risks to the bank, proactively communicated with consumers, and also revised policies where required.
  • Social listening helped the US fast-food chain Wendy’s to discover that people were worried about eating at its restaurants because they did not want to break their diets and they didn’t know the nutritional content of the food. This made the company build an app which shows the relevant nutritional information.
  • When the US whiskey brand Maker’s Mark announced that it was going to reduce the alcohol content of its drink, customers protested about it on social platforms. The company reversed its decision based on customer feedback.
  • When Microsoft revealed that the Xbox One would need constant internet access, fans complained about it, saying that what they love about game consoles was the flexibility to play anywhere. Microsoft listened and made appropriate changes to the final released product.
  • Dell has become one of the most social brands with its effective use of social media listening in 11 languages.
  • Through effective social listening, Cisco was able to reduce its marketing costs, increase profits and, solve service issues, and improve overall engagement with its customers.

Social media’s data is undoubtedly very big – almost to the tune of five exabytes per day. But this is an unstructured data and only analytics can bring structure to this data to make it useful. How well prepared are you to handle manage the social listening for your brand?

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