What does your audience care about? Social listening can reveal this and much more! Fluctuating opinions and emotions can be hard to decipher, and they’re so important for brands seeking to read the room. Good thing we’ve compiled a list of the 16 best social listening platforms to help you on capture and analyze this insight!
First, here are statistics which prove how indispensable social listening is:
- Ninety-one percent of unhappy consumers never return, without social listening you will be left in the dark as to why.
- Social media users are predicted to increase to over 4 billion by 2025, making knowing what’s on their minds, or rather posted on their social media, paramount.
- 92% of consumers trust a social media influencer over a brand
But let’s discuss what social listening is . . .
The Skinny on Listening to Your Audience
Technically put, social listening is a detailed analysis of your audience. It dives deep into what your consumers care about and reveals where they’re talking about these topics. Basically, it’s the big picture your brand needs to stay on top.
Instead of zeroing in on individual posts and videos, your company gets an aggregated view highlighting top trends and themes that you can fold into your brand strategy.
Social listening platforms shine a light on both issues and opportunities. This way you can be proactive and get to the bottom of why an issue continues to present itself or meet a need that consumers are clamoring for.
However, it’s not just a handy tool for protecting your brand and coming up with new product ideas, it can offer intel you can apply to any aspect of your company’s operations, such as:
- Understanding brand sentiment
- Identifying and optimizing content to meet engagement goals
- Adding a personal and authentic touch to your brand
- Designing relevant campaigns for success
- Creating personalized experiences, at scale
Now that you know what social listening can do, let’s explore those tools that will help you do it!
1) NetBase Quid
NetBase Quid digs deep and grabs the metrics that will guide your brand to success. Using natural language processing (NLP), it dissects and reads between the lines of the latest lingo, capturing nuance that would otherwise be lost. It not only understands what your consumer means when they use the term ‘flex,’ but it deciphers the hidden meaning behind it, providing you a complete picture of what your consumer meant – and what s/he was feeling at the moment. Having access to NLP helps aid your brand develop more authentic and targeted messaging.
This social listening platform helps brands engage with and grow audiences by:
- Identifying topics/trends consumers care most about, to inform campaign creation.
- Revealing the best social platform to share your campaign, depending on where your audience is most engaged and active
- Following campaign and topic progress in real-time, so you can switch things up as needed
- Analyzing for terms and sentiment about your customer service , with a focus on needs that aren’t being met.
- Keeping competitor activity top of mind, to learn from their successes and challenges when seeking to win the same consumers.
And so much more, from establishing your baseline to post-purchase metrics, NetBase Quid has you covered.
2) Rival IQ
Rival IQ is a social media analytics company that helps brands maximize their impact with competitive benchmarking, comprehensive analytics, and automated insight generation. Their intuitive software simplifies the analysis and acquisition of billions of social posts, placing social performance in context, and providing answers to the most important social media questions.
IFTTT stands for If This, Then That. Essentially, this automation tool can be customized to do whatever you want, and that includes helping with your social listening endeavors. It operates using ‘applets,’ which you can use to combine social media platforms with various services. And as you can choose which applets to add to your dashboard, you can curate your own DIY social listening platform. Because it isn’t a true monitoring tool, it’s not as specific, but you can keep an eye on brand mentions, keywords and hashtags.
Social media users are predicted to increase to over 4 billion by 2025, and this makes social listening paramount to operating your business. And this social listening platform has a focus on B2B companies. It integrates seamlessly with marketing automation and CRM platforms. It tracks consumer conversations and because it’s already tracking them, it can measure your efforts and impacts on your audience against them.
It’s important to capture brand mentions as they happen, and it’s equally critical to be ready if something unsavory is said about your brand. Keyhole has a social listening tool which predicts when posts about your brand are about to go viral. This can help you prepare for a variety of scenarios. And since 88% of people look for opinions online before making a purchase, a social listening platform helps you take a proactive approach to brand health.
Stay up to date with your Twitter audience. Whatagraph offers a Twitter template which reveals metrics on new followers, engagements and reach. But most useful is the ability to track fluctuations over time. This helps you see where your efforts were most effective and when you missed your shot. Then you can apply this knowledge to your newest campaign.
This is a tried-and-true method of keeping an eye on the things that you are most curious about. Google Alerts doesn’t track in real time, but it does allow you to set keyword alerts for whatever you’re interested in. It then sends you emails on a daily or weekly basis, which keeps you up to date on what’s happening in the consumer world.
Loomly is an all-in-one social listening platform, meaning you can create social posts right from it and monitor your results with their social analytics tool. You can also create content right from this platform, and it even gives ideas on what to post if you’re drawing a blank. Then you can schedule it for the future, saving you time down the line. Once you’ve published, you can track its performance to see which content is resonating with your audience.
This is another scheduling and tracking social listening platform. Once again, you can create and schedule posts ahead of time. Their social media tools can help you analyze and pinpoint when is the best time to post, how many times per day you should be posting for maximum reach, and what types of posts are resonating with your followers.
10) Zignal Labs
Being ready for the next trend is important if you hope to stay ahead of the race, and this includes identifying emerging narratives early. This is something that Zignal does well. Once you’ve identified an emerging trend, you can assess what it’s potential impact will be. This helps brands design trend-inspired campaigns with a degree of confidence.
There’s certainly something to be said for having things all in one place, and Hootsuite is a trusted social listening platform for precisely this reason! It allows brands to schedule posts across all of their social networks and review posts before they go live, in a simple calendar view. Brand can then monitor results and analyze what worked well and what did not. Another neat feature? They offer advertising capabilities baked in, keeping the whole thing in-house.
Influencer marketing has grown exponentially and is worth 13.8 billion this year. And perhaps that’s because 92% of consumers trust an influencer over a brand. So, having a social media platform which allows you to classify influencers that matter most to your business – well, that’s money in the bank. Once you’ve found the one which will work for you, you can monitor the results to ensure that you are reaching your audience. And you can also monitor emotional impact via sentiment.
Schedule your posts and collaborate with team members on social media content, all in one spot. Sendible locates and delivers brand mentions and then allows the user to respond in app to their audience. And since consumers will often call out a brand online, responding in a timely fashion is critical. Forty percent of consumers expect a response within the first hour – if you wait too long, you could be looking at a messy PR situation – or a lost lead.
Protecting your brand health has never been more important with the rise of social media and online review sites. Reputology monitors and checks major review sites, including Google, Facebook, and Yelp reviews. And you can respond to any review in the app. It also integrates with Hootsuite, which then enables you to monitor reviews in the same dashboard as your social media accounts.
What’s in a hashtag? Apparently, a lot – or nothing, if you don’t use the right ones. TikBuddy monitors TikTok for top trending hashtags used by influencers to help your brand discover trending content and draw a crowd for your own posts. You can search based on ratings to find the best content creators and then create your own showstoppers based on what’s already working. Afterwards sit back and monitor its success by tracking engagement.
16) People Pattern
If you’re unsure who your best audience is, People Pattern can help you identify them. This tool analyzes follower attributes of your own company or a competitor’s, to identify who makes up your audience. Instead of focusing on conversations, this tool focuses on the people behind those comments and posts. To understand the patterns and reflect that insight in your content, as people like to feel seen after all!
Any of these tools will help your brand better understand your consumers, and if you’d like to see a best-in-class option in actin, reach out for a demo! There’s lots more that brand can be doing right now to win market share.