The days of passively talking “at” your audience online are well and truly over. To succeed in today’s interconnected global and digital economy, requires actively “listening” to your audience and building an engaged community around your services, brand, and company.
Social channels create a direct line of communication between your business and consumers and give you immediate access to the latest information around your products or services.
Social media monitoring allows you to gain insights into your brand’s online visibility on social media, be alerted to disasters, assess competitor activity, spot market opportunities, and measure the impact of your marketing campaigns. Additionally, social media monitoring can also provide vital information about emerging trends and what clients and consumers think about specific products, businesses, brands, or topics.
As a tool for business intelligence, being able to track volume and sentiments of social conversations, activity, and trends on social media channels like blogs, internet forums, social networking sites, micro-blogging platforms like Twitter, Quora, etc., discussion groups, video sites, and user-generated content (UGC) is invaluable. Using social media monitoring as a form of business intelligence, however, is a complex undertaking, typically carried out by a cross-section of groups that include PR companies, marketing professionals, market researchers, social engagement and community staff, agencies, and professional sales reps. Typically, many small businesses don’t have the budget to pay a social media monitoring service to continually track their coverage in the and actively monitor their online reputation.
Fortunately various technology companies have developed tools and solutions to facilitate the monitoring of a broad spectrum of social media channels, enabling companies to identify and even predict consumer behavior around their brands or products so they can respond proactively to conversations and interact with consumers in various social media platforms.
In this article, we explore a number of social media tracking tools that you may want to check out.
Table of Contents
- WordPress – An Ideal Platform For Social Media
- Pitch Your Services And Products To An Audience Of Buyers On Your Social Networks With WordPress
- Syndicate Your Content Across Multiple Channels
- Market Research
- Build Your Business Reputation And Brand
- Study Authority Sites In Your Niche
- Explore Joint Venture Opportunities, Find Affiliates, Recruit Talented Staff, etc.
- Could Your Web Content “Go Viral” Online?
- Social Media Monitoring – Not Just For Global Businesses
WordPress – An Ideal Platform For Social Media
WordPress is not just a powerful, flexible and extremely easy to use CMS platform used by millions of businesses worldwide, it also integrates fully with many social media applications, allowing you to easily grow your online presence in the social realm.
To learn more about the benefits of using WordPress please see other posts we have published on this site.
With a WordPress site and some of the tools listed in the next section of this article, you will be able to tap into the new social business marketing opportunities.
Let’s take a look at some of the reasons why WordPress makes an ideal platform for marketing your business on social media.
Pitch Your Services And Products To An Audience Of Buyers On Your Social Networks With WordPress
WordPress includes built-in social features, like commenting and discussions. A range of WordPress plugins can add additional social features to your site that let you reach a wider audience on social networks like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and many others.
For example, there are plugins that can add social sharing buttons, forums, add photos from Instagram, Twitter cards, Facebook feeds, testimonials, surveys, polls … even optimize your article titles and descriptions for social networks.
The WordPress content management system (CMS) is not only ideal for social media as a content marketing tool, it can also be completely transformed into a full-featured social network site, using WordPress plugins like BuddyPress, WPSymposium, and others.
(Set up your own social network with BuddyPress WordPress plugin)
BuddyPress lets you set up a social networking community on your WordPress site.
BuddyPress is often referred to as “social networking in a box.” You can turn features on and off to suit your needs and the plugin boasts an active community of plugin developers who contribute new plugins that greatly extend the platform.
(WP Symposium Pro WordPress social network plugin)
WPSymposium provides members with a strong support community and assistance for members who need professional help. Social features of the plugin include:
- Activity Wall
- Private Mail
- Notification Bar
- Member Directory
- Photo Galleries
- RSS Feeds
WPSymposium lets you work with the theme you have. You can add features to pages and posts using shortcodes.
Syndicate Your Content Across Multiple Channels
With most social media tools, syndicating content is very easy. There are tools and services that let you compose, schedule and broadcast your content over many social channels and manage your social media campaigns from one central location, saving you considerable time and money.
If you want to drive most of your social marketing strategy from WordPress, you can. WordPress not only makes it easy to publish content on your own domain, it also has many great plugins that encourage users to share your web content on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, etc. See the article we’ve written about WordPress social media sharing plugins and our comprehensive article series on how to automate web content syndication on social media channels using WordPress.
Using social tools allows you to listen to what your market wants, identify new trends and business opportunities and stay ahead of competitors.
Once you have identified new content opportunities, you can post messages individually on each of the social networks you’d like to reach, or publish these on a WordPress site that’s been configured to automatically notify those social networks.
Also, many tools are available that let you survey customers online and help you create customer-driven sales funnels. Many applications will easily integrate with WordPress.
Build Your Business Reputation And Brand
Building and strengthening your brand and reputation, showcasing your talent, or establishing your expertise online requires commitment and a solid social marketing strategy.
You are engaging with real people online, and so your interactions must be authentic and meaningful. Focus on your target audience, and listen to their conversations to gain valuable insights.
Remember, we are born with two ears and one mouth as a reminder that we are meant to do twice as much listening as talking. What you post online and how you respond to other user’s comments and discussions is very important, and can make or break your reputation online. Everyday we hear stories of brands that handle a customer situation poorly and end up suffering heavy losses as soon as their response or behavior gets circulated online.
Social media provides many new channels for gaining wider exposure online. This can make it easier for others to see you as an authority in your niche, but it can also be very demanding on your time.
An expertly configured WordPress-driven website is an ideal platform for building your online reputation or brand. It lets you build your expertise online, showcase your talents, share valuable content and strategies with your customers and clients, and drive visitors to your business.
(You can automatically syndicate your content across social media channels with an expertly configured WordPress-driven site.)
Study Authority Sites In Your Niche
Being able to listen to social conversations can help you reverse engineer the success strategies of experts and influencers in your niche.
Explore Joint Venture Opportunities, Find Affiliates, Recruit Talented Staff, etc.
It’s no secret that recruitment companies spend a lot of time nowadays researching social media and studying the profiles of individuals when looking for potential candidates to fill specific positions. As a business owner, you can do the same, and look for staff, network with other business owners, and connect with like-minded marketers and potential JV partners. Using social media can grow your revenue, get your name out there, and lead to new lucrative ventures.
Could Your Web Content “Go Viral” Online?
Most businesses would love to have a viral marketing campaign. “Going viral,” however, is a difficult thing to achieve, as it relies on many factors that you cannot control. Throwing loads of money at a campaign is no guarantee of viral success. Many ridiculous memes have achieved stratospheric viral success while big-budget and well-funded campaigns have failed dismally.
In many cases, the best you can do is know your audience well, and provide content that users will find so useful, engaging, informative or even funny, that they will be naturally motivated to share with others.
Some of the tools listed in the next section of this article could help your content go viral, or at least help you create relatively inexpensive marketing campaigns.
We provide a free email training course that will show you how to create useful and engaging content. In this course we also explore ways to create content with the potential to go viral and help your business grow faster. For more information, go here or subscribe using the form below:
Social Media Monitoring – Not Just For Global Businesses
(Social Media Monitoring – Useful For All Businesses, Big And Small)
In general, social media monitoring can be divided into two main groups:
- Online Reputation Management (ORM)
- Monitoring Online Trends
Managing Your Digital Reputation
You have probably heard about online reputation management. If you haven’t, you will be hearing about it more and more as time goes on, because it is becoming increasingly more important for many individuals and brands to track what is being said about them online – especially if what is being said is negative. No doubt you’ve heard the saying that when someone has a bad experience with a product or service they tell 10 more people about it. Real or imagined, bad news travels fast. People or competitors could be posting negative material online about you or your brand and if this goes unchecked, this can seriously damage your reputation.
Originally an aspect of the services of PR companies, reputation management is now an issue that affects many businesses and individuals online.
If you or your brand’s image, name or good standing is being affected by negative material being posted online, you have to find a way of diluting the negative effects with positive content, or restoring consumer trust and confidence.
Before you can begin to repair any damage, however, you first have to find out about it. The sooner you can spot a negative comment, bad review, or misinformed opinion, the sooner you can begin to do something about it.
That’s where social media monitoring tools come in. If you Google your name or your business and a negative comment or review comes up, you can then address the issue, e.g. post a response, contact the website or person directly, etc.
Many businesses are ignoring opportunities to create happier customers and grow their business because they are not monitoring their online reputations effectively.
Monitoring what is being said online extends beyond worldwide brands, celebrities, movie stars, famous musicians, and security-related departments. It’s also important to be able to monitor the online reputation of individuals. For example, consider the situations below:
- A former spouse in the middle of an acrimonious divorce or child custody dispute feels hard done by.
- A former employee feels disgruntled after being fired.
- A potential employer searches online for information about you. They may not find anything bad, but there may not be a lot of good, positive things published online either to help your case.
Even if you are just starting out, it’s good to create an easy “set and forget” social media alert system, so that if anything does come up online, you can act proactively and deal with it in a timely manner.
Do you have a system for managing your online reputation?
We’ve written an article about a WordPress plugin that allows you to legally and ethically manage user reviews. More information: Power Online Reviews – WordPress Plugin For Easy Client Reviews Management
Online Trend Monitoring
Regardless of which niche or industry you operate your business in, there are always new and exciting things happening. New products get released, new services get launched, events get scheduled and announced online, influential people get mentioned in the news, companies release useful research data, new videos are published containing fantastic tips or ideas, an outdated fact gets updated and becomes relevant again, something goes viral on YouTube, yesterday’s next big thing suddenly stops trending and gets replaced with the new “new” thing, services get discontinued, people retire, and so on.
All of this can provide you with an endless source of new content and new content ideas (how many news sites now incorporate a segment on what’s trending on social media?)
Social media content is topical content. Implementing a regular schedule of posting topical content with added useful comments or insightful opinions to your site not only can help drive more traffic to your business, but your blog or website could end up becoming an authoritative destination or resource for your niche or industry. People could end up referring you to others on social media, and who knows … your website or business could even end up becoming a topical, or newsworthy source of content that other online users will write about and post in their content.
This is the end of Part 1
In part 2 we explore more than 25 social media measurement tools every WordPress user should know about. To continue reading this article, click here: Social Media Tracking Tools For WordPress – Part 2
"This is AMAZING! I had learnt about how to use WordPress previously, but this covers absolutely everything and more!! Incredible value! Thank you!" - Monique, Warrior Forum
Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users
Learn how to safely and automatically backup your WordPress files and database and how to easily restore your WordPress site if something were to happen.
More info: How To Back Up & Restore WordPress Sites
Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users
Learn how to set up and configure a WordPress membership site using the S2 Member free WordPress membership plugin.
More info: Using S2 Member
Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users
Learn how to set up a forum for your visitors, prospects, customers, members, or affiliates using WordPress.
More info: How To Set Up A Forum On WordPress
Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users
Learn how to optimize your WordPress site and improve your page loading speed.
More info: How To Optimize WordPress