The days of passively talking “at” your audience online are well and truly over. Putting up a static page on your site about your company is no longer enough. To achieve success in today’s interconnected global economy, requires actively “listening” to your audience and building an engaged social community around your company, brand, and services.
Social media channels create a direct line of communication between your brand and your target audience and give anyone with an Internet connection instant access to the latest information around your services or products.
Social media monitoring allows you to find insights into what people are saying about your brand, products, or company on social media, measure the impact of your marketing campaigns, spy on your competition, help you take preventative measures if you detect negative comments or feedback by dissatisfied users, and identify market opportunities. Additionally, social media monitoring can also provide you with valuable information about emerging trends and what consumers and clients think about specific businesses, brands, products, or topics.
As a business intelligence tool, social signal monitoring is invaluable. Using social media monitoring as a form of business intelligence, however, is a complex undertaking, often carried out by various people including market researchers, marketing teams, online reputation management companies, social marketing agencies, social engagement and community staff, and professional sales reps. Typically, many small businesses don’t have the budget to pay social media monitoring professionals to continually track their coverage in the media.
Fortunately various providers have made available affordable tools and solutions that facilitate the active tracking of a broad range of social media channels, enabling companies to identify and even predict consumer behavior around their brands or products so they can react to conversations and engage with online users in a timely manner.
In the article below, we explore several social media measurement tools and technologies that are worth checking out and knowing about.
- WordPress And Social Media
- Pitch Your Products And Services To The Right Audience On Your Social Media Networks With WordPress
- Share Your Content Across Many Social Channels
- Conduct Market Research
- Build Your Business Reputation And Brand Online
- Spy On Your Competition
- Explore Joint Venture Opportunities, Find Affiliates, Recruit Talented Staff, etc.
- “Going Viral” Online Faster
- Social Media Monitoring – Useful For All Businesses, Big And Small
WordPress And Social Media
WordPress is not just a powerful, flexible and easy to manage content publishing platform used by millions of businesses worldwide, it also integrates fully with many social media applications, making it an ideal too for growing your online presence in the social realm.
To learn more about the benefits of using WordPress please click on links to visit other posts we have published on this site.
With a WordPress site and some of the tools listed in Part 2 of this article, you will be able to explore full range of benefits offered by social media marketing.
Let’s take a look at some of the reasons why WordPress provides an ideal platform to market your business on social media.
Pitch Your Products And Services To The Right Audience On Your Social Media Networks With WordPress
WordPress comes with 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 networkign sites.
The WordPress content management system (CMS) is not only ideal for social media as a content publishing and marketing tool, it can also be transformed into a full-featured social networking, using plugins like BuddyPress, WPSymposium, and others.
(Run your own social networking website with BuddyPress WordPress plugin)
Use the BuddyPress WordPress plugin to set up and manage your own online social community on your WordPress site, with member profiles, user groups, messaging, activity streams, and more.
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 open source plugins that greatly extend the platform.
(WP Symposium Pro WordPress social networking plugin)
WP Symposium offers a strong support community and assistance for users who need professional help. Social features of the plugin include:
- Activity Wall
- Private Messages
- User Directory
- Photo Galleries
- RSS Feeds
WPSymposium lets you work with the theme you have. You can add social features to your pages and posts using shortcodes.
With most social media platforms, syndicating your content is very easy. There are services and tools that let you compose, schedule and broadcast your content over multiple social channels simultaneously and manage your social marketing campaigns from one central location, saving you considerable time and money.
If you want to manage your social marketing from WordPress, you can. WordPress not only lets you publish content on your own domain, it also has a number of great plugins that allow users to share your content on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, LinkedIn, etc. For more information, check out the article we’ve written about WordPress social media sharing plugins and our comprehensive article series on how to automatically syndicate your web content on social channels using WordPress.
Conduct Market Research
Social tools and applications allow you to discover what your market wants, identify new business opportunities and stay one step ahead of your competition.
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 your social networking sites.
Also, many applications and tools are available that let you conduct surveys and polls of customers online. Many applications and tools can be easily integrated with WordPress.
Build Your Business Reputation And Brand Online
Strengthening your brand and online reputation, showcasing your special talents, or establishing your authority online requires commitment and a solid social marketing strategy.
You are trying to engage with real people online, and so your interactions must be genuine and meaningful. Put the needs of your audience first, 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 and how you respond to users online 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 being the subject of much scorn and derision when the online community gets hold of the news.
Although social media provides many new channels for gaining wider exposure online, it can also be very demanding on your time.
An expertly configured WordPress-driven blog is an ideal platform for building your reputation or brand online. It helps you establish your your expertise online, showcase your talents, share great information with your customers and clients, and drive new visitors to your business.
(You can automate content syndication across various social networks using an expertly configured WordPress website.)
Spy On Your Competition
Being able to monitor social media conversations can help you discover and even be inspired by what experts in your niche are doing right.
Explore Joint Venture Opportunities, Find Affiliates, Recruit Talented Staff, etc.
Recruitment companies research 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.
“Going Viral” Online Faster
Most businesses would love to have a viral marketing campaign. “Going viral,” however, is quite difficult to achieve, as it relies on many factors that are out of your control. Throwing loads of money at a clever campaign is no guarantee of viral success. Many ridiculous memes have succeeded virally while large brands and corporations have failed to take off.
In many cases, the best you can do is study and research your audience, and provide content that users in your audience will find so useful, engaging, informative or “spot-on”, that they will be naturally motivated to share with others.
Some of the tools listed in Part Two of this article can help your content go viral, or at least help you run relatively inexpensive marketing campaigns.
We provide a free email training course that shows you how to create meaningful and compelling content for your readers. In this free course we also discuss many ways to create content that has 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 – Useful For All Businesses, Big And Small
(Social Media Monitoring – Useful For All Businesses, Big And Small)
Social media monitoring can generally be divided into two main groups:
- Online Reputation Management (ORM)
- Online Trend Monitoring
Online Reputation Management
You have probably heard of 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 others are saying about them online – especially if what is being posted is negative. No doubt you’ve heard it said before that when someone has a bad experience with a product or service they will tell 10 more people about it. Bad news travels fast. People or competing companies could be posting negative material online about you or your brand and if left unchecked, this can seriously damage your reputation.
Originally an aspect of the services of PR companies, reputation management is an issue that now affects many companies and individuals online.
If you or your brand’s image, good name or good standing is being affected by negative material being posted online, you have to find a way of weakening 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 discover 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 yourself or your business and spot a negative comment or review, you can then address the issue, e.g. post a response, contact the person directly, etc.
Many businesses are currently ignoring opportunities to create happier customers and boost their revenues because they ignore their digital reputations.
Monitoring what is being said online extends beyond multinational corporations, celebrities, movie stars, famous musicians, and security-conscious agencies. Being able to monitor the reputation of of an average individual is also important. Consider the situations below:
- A former spouse in the middle of a bitter divorce or child custody dispute is feeling 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 enough good, positive things published online either to support the things you have listed in your job application.
Even if you are just starting out, it’s good to create a “set and forget” alert system, so that if anything about you does come up online, you can act proactively and deal with things in a timely manner.
Do you have an digital reputation management strategy in place?
We’ve written an article about a simple yet effective WordPress plugin that can help to avoid the escalation of negative reviews about your services through effective customer review management. More info: Power Online Reviews – User Feedback Management Plugin For WordPress
Monitoring Online Trends
Regardless of which niche or industry you are in, there are always new and exciting things happening. New products get released, new services get launched, events get scheduled and promoted, influential people say something controversial that gets mentioned in the news, companies publish useful research data, new presentations are published containing fantastic tips or ideas, an outdated fact gets updated, something becomes the next viral phenomenon on Twitter, yesterday’s must-have new thing suddenly stops trending and gets replaced with the new “new” thing, services get discontinued, people retire, and so on.
All of this provides you with an endless source of new content (have you noticed how all 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 your 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 a “go to” destination or resource for your niche or industry. People may end up referring you to others on social media, and who knows … your website or brand could even end up becoming a topical, or newsworthy source of content that others will write about and post in their content.
This is the end of Part One
In part two we explore WordPress social media tracking and useful resources. To continue reading this article, click here: Essential Social Media Measurement Resources For WordPress – Part 2
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