Statistics confirm nearly 55 per cent of the world’s population has access to the internet and 72 per cent of this cohort are active social media users. With the world turning digital-savvy, an increasing number of customers are using their mobile devices to surf websites, purchase products, and share brand experiences.
A research article published by McKinsey & Company revealed that 70 per cent of purchase experiences are based on how customers feel they have been treated by a firm and their perception of your brand. In most cases, customers stop using a brand on account of poor customer service, and not the product.
Social listening helps you monitor what people are saying about your brand in the digital space. It also lets you gain an edge over your competitors and capture market share.
By listening to social conversations, you can participate in brand-related interactions, gain valuable market insights, educate prospects, and build relationships with customers. Thus, social listening is an effective tool to strengthen your marketing campaigns and boost business profitability
This post will help you understand the significance of social listening for your business and how you can use it to improve customer service.
Know Your Customers
Businesses can use social listening to get to know their customers through social media conversations that mention their brand or executives’ name, the area of specialization, and/or the names of their competitors.
Consider the below-mentioned questions to gain insights about your customers and prospects, thereby enabling you to create relevant marketing strategies and offer good customer service.
Who Is Talking About Your Brand?
Use your social media monitoring efforts to find out who started the brand conversation. Could the people conversing be key influencers for your segment? Who can they influence? The answers to these questions will help you respond to the conversation in an appropriate manner and get an idea about the customer preferences.
What Is Your Audience Saying?
Is the audience praising or criticizing your product or customer service? Are there any influencers trying to encourage people to use or avoid using your brand? Studying the nature of the conversation will help you appreciate the factors that influence buying decisions.
Tools like Google Alerts, Quora, Twitter Advanced Search, and Social Mention track your brand mentions and find out the top keywords and brand advocates for your business.
What Channel Are They Using?
Is the interaction taking place on the company’s social media page or some other blog or community website? Understanding where your audience is interacting will enable you to determine the best places to connect with them.
When Are They Active on Social Media?
When are your customers most receptive or active on social media? This information will ensure that your staff members are 100 percent responsive when your customers are active, thereby enabling you to offer quick and good customer service. Also, this is the time when you can post the latest brand update and be certain that your audience has received it.
Seek Customer Feedback
One way to know what your customers think about your brand or service is by simply monitoring how they talk about your brand. Customers are quick to identify product issues and often use social media platforms to voice their opinions. Moreover, they expect a quick response and solution to the issues faced by them.
Knowing what enthuses or frustrates your audience is critical, especially in the early phases of product development. Track the features that customers like or dislike about your brand and competitors by setting alerts for relevant keywords. Encourage customers to offer real-time feedback on social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook, offer instant customer support, and track recurring issues to come up with permanent fixes.
Proactively Manage Issues
Customers expect a frictionless online experience; hence, delay in responding to their issues can severely damage your brand reputation. Research reveals each year American businesses lose nearly USD 62 billion revenue owing to poor customer experiences.
Social listening helps you identify potential concerns early in the product lifecycle, allowing you to deal with them before time. If you look at the reviews of Trustpilot, you can see that most of their customers are proactively asking for feedback and responding to that feedback quickly, whether it’s positive or negative.
Social listening can help big brands with large mentions especially on reviews sites to get notified and take action instantly.
Quick responses to negative comments and feedback can reduce the chances of additional inflammatory statements from frustrated customers, thus improving your customer retention rate and the bottom line.
Social listening, along with predictive analytics, can help pre-empt customer behaviour, giving you enough time to offer a solution to the pain points that may arise in the future. Firms can use big data to receive location-specific service predictions, listen to real-time campaign feedback, and figure out the content that engages the audience. Also, social media sentiment analysis can help you understand the tone and the emotion conveyed in a brand mention.
Social media monitoring tools can anticipate potential customer issues, thereby allowing you to find ways to address them in time. Moreover, monitoring keywords related to your business, such as your brand name and words like ‘issues’, ‘problem’, and ‘concerns’, among others can enable you to reach out to the customers before the problem is blown out of proportion. Customers will also appreciate that you are listening to their problems even before they have sounded it out to you.
Offer Personalized Customer Experiences
A report published in the Harvard Business Review reveals that personalizing experiences with customers can deliver five to eight times return on investment (ROI) for the marketing spend. Customers tend to think positively about brands that offer them relevant products and services based on their unique needs.
Social listening helps marketers identify the manner in which the target audience interacts, the words and tone used, and the specific needs and expectations of the brand.
Start by running a thorough audience analysis on each social channel to identify key trends and customer pain points, and requests for a new feature, product, or content. Study the nature of your audience with respect to their demographics, profession, social media likes, interests, and activities, page affinities, and influencers (who they follow). Use this data to map out the buyer persona and personalize customer experiences.
Wrapping It Up
A good number of businesses are increasingly investing in social media marketing to gain market insights, improve their brand exposure, boost website traffic, and stay on top of the competition. Customer experience is a key business differentiator that is directly proportional to the level of customer service offered.
Social listening is at the heart of all the marketing strategies as it tracks instances where your brand is cited and helps boost your marketing campaigns by offering valuable market insights. The information shared in this post will help you use social listening as a market intelligence tool, enabling you to improve customer service and boost profits.
I am Natalia Hawkins, a content writer, and a blogger.