As social media is evolving and growing, more consumers are using their social media networks to talk about a product or service and communicate with their favorite brands. It’s important for companies to actively listen to these conversations around their brand to better understand what is going on in their industry across all social media platforms. Social media listening also allows brands to enhance their products and services, identify engagement opportunities and monitor competitor mentions. There are countless listening tools out there, and I have had the opportunity to research and use various platforms, such as Radian6. Sundog has been a Marketing Cloud Preferred Partner for Salesforce since 2013, and I have been using Radian6, their social media listening and monitoring tool, for more than a year now. What I love most about this tool is the variety of widgets provided, as well as its ability to drill down into conversations. Here’s a breakdown of some of the tool’s widgets, which I find extremely helpful and use on a daily basis:
- River of News: The River of News enables you to view specific mentions around your brand or your competitor’s. You’re able to see who is talking about your brand or you competitor’s, where the conversation is taking place, user’s social media followers/following, and overall engagement. Further, the River of News allows you to organize these conversations by Forum Thread Size, Twitter Followers, Publish Date, View Count, and more. The best part about this widget is that you can actively engage and identify sentiment on any selected mention.
- Conversation Cloud: This widget, which is one of my favorites to use, displays the top words and calls out the more distinct words mentioned in posts (i.e., the larger the text, the more that word was used). The Conversation Cloud also enables you to drill down and see the conversations and topics around that word. So, if a negative word appears in the Conversation Cloud, it may be worth further investigating those mentions to see what’s being said about your brand.
- Topic Trends: This widget is most helpful for understanding conversation trends over a period of time. By opening the River of News or Conversation Cloud widgets within Topic Trends, you can further drill down into specific points throughout the timeline to see why the conversation had a spike during a specific time period.
- Media Type: This widget allows you to see where the conversations around your brand are taking place. Radian6 pulls in conversations from Twitter, Facebook, Blogs, Flickr, YouTube, Mainstream News, and Buy/Sell websites. If the majority of your mentions are coming from Twitter and your brand does not have a social media presence on this network, it might be smart to start thinking about a corporate Twitter page.
You’re all ready for social media listening now, right? Not quite yet, but you’re almost there. There’s a lot more that comes into the equation, including training on how to effectively interpret and provide insight around these conversations. Although managing and monitoring these mentions takes practice, you’re all set up for social media listening success with a tool like Radian6. There are more tools out there that vary in price range and features, so stay tuned for an upcoming social media listening tool analysis on our blog. In the mean time, check this out for more information on Radian6.