This is a guest post by Matthew Yeoman.
A business that is getting serious about its social media marketing presence can’t operate like an average user. You need to go beyond the standard app and start using tools that will help you monitor your brand on a local, national, and global scale.
Being able to gather greater information, and sort through conversations from across the social web is going to help you better understand what you do well, and what needs to be worked. Since the social web is made of so many different platforms you may need to choose more than one of the social media monitoring tools listed below.
What your social media monitoring tools should listen to
You can’t just sign up for a monitoring tool, sit back, and press a magic button that says “Ok, do social media marketing now.” You will still need to work, and you will will still need to input data. Here are a few key areas to focus on:
- Your brand name mentions - both direct account mentions, and indirect mentions
- Feedback from customers
- Conversations about competitors
- Potential sales leads
- Industry news
- Keywords for your business
- Hashtags in your industry
- Trending content
Keep the above points in mind and your social media marketing efforts will be much more focused, and have demonstrable ROI no matter which tool below you use.
20 social media monitoring tools
A tool trusted by some of the biggest companies in the world (Nike, Volkswagen, McDonalds, Starbucks, adidas) with powerful global listening coverage, analytics that allow you to dig deep into your audience data, and key data analytics tools.
Focuses on image heavy social platforms (Instagram being the main focus) and works to help you best use the user generated content out there. The tool’s ability to curate images from social websites across the social web for you to use to push social proof and sales is remarkable.
A ‘do it all’ tool that will help you track tweets, blog stats, website stats, and a variety of social networks. It all comes together to give you general reports on your social media, and online, marketing efforts.
4. Collective Intellect
This Oracle platform will help you capture a wide variety of conversation every day. You’re then free to join in and interact, or record for future marketing efforts.
This just may be the most multi-purpose of all the tools listed. You can track nearly every social platform, plus WordPress blog activity. Conversation, hashtag, and keyword searches are organized in columns for real-time marketing at its best. Their click analytics can prove invaluable to properly planning your next move by knowing which links are getting clicks.
6. Crimson Hexagon
The basic premise of the tool is that it helps you listen in on social conversations. The specifics of it is that they use their Forsight Platform, Brightview Algorithm, and Affinities Analysis to properly interpret and collate these conversations. Yes, this is an advanced level tool for those with high data needs.
A Twitter centered social tool for basic listening. You can search for keywords, hashtags, links, photos, and video. Not a long-term tool, but it can work as you try to determine what tool you actually want to use, or while testing your Twitter account.
The worlds first social media content analysis company (founded 1984) knows a thing or two about the online conversation business. This is an elite level service that combines computer driven data gathering with highly specialized human data analysts. This is not a ‘do it yourself’ solution as much of the data gathering is done by their team. They send this information to you via a dashboard you’re able to access at any time for social media planning.
9. Media Vantage
A social media monitoring and conversation tracking tool that specializes in real-time marketing. This is combined with mentions in traditional marketing avenues via search engine monitoring to give you a complete view of a specific campaign both online and offline.
World beating social media monitoring from one of the leading online PR firms in the world. Their globe spanning company, with branches in many major markets, can help you gain keen insight into your social relevance.
11. Ice Rocket
The free tool from Meltwater that lets you search the web, blogs, Twitter, and Facebook for brand mentions, or for any keyword you choose. You can use it to track brand sentiment across every online forum, or you can use it to find interesting new content and the people who are sharing it.
A useful tool meant specifically for real-time social media marketing. It functions via an app on your Android smartphone or iPhone by sending you alerts when your brand is mentioned. This can be great for a solo-entrepreneur who wants to get in on conversations as they happen.
13. Social Marketing Cloud
A tool designed to help you manage customer conversations across all social channels. It can also help you with email marketing, B2B marketing automation, and digital advertising.
14. Pinterest Web Analytics
This is Pinterest’s own, and recently updated, free analytics tool. Their new dashboard is highly visual, offering you insights at a glance. Work down further into the data using their tools and see your understanding of this exciting platform grow.
Twitter’s own scheduling and monitoring tool. You can schedule tweets in advanced, monitor keywords and hashtags, and divide your data into separate streams. It won’t help you with anything but Twitter; it is best for those with a dedicated Twitter manager who only wants to focus on the tweeting at hand.
A free tool whose best use isn’t to check in on and inflate your own ego with how influential you are. It’s best use is to see how else is influential in your industry, and seeing if you can swing them to your content and message. In short; it helps you find popular social users so that you can influence them.
Another tool similar to Tweetdeck and Hootsuite, but with a handy browser add-on that makes sharing, and scheduling, exciting content easier. It can also auto-schedule your tweets for the best time in the day. All you have to do is keep your queue full of content you think will resonate well with your audience. Need content help? Here’s a guide to popular content ideas that you can almost always share.
This tool has an interesting focus on determining the emotions, or sentiment, behind your social mentions. Tracking this alongside purchase decisions makes it a unique chance to watch social conversations and sales side-by-side.
Combines your Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube accounts and shows you real-time conversations about your business. Their email and text alerts for shifts in sentiment can truly help those without a big PR team behind them.
20. Market Me Suite
Another one-stop platform for managing more than one social channel. It’s great for those who need to get organized, and give differing priorities to conversations happening online.
For those who are visual learners, here's an infograhic from RazorSocial that will serve as your reference guide to understanding which tool is suitable for you.
Click image to enlarge.
Use social media monitoring tools
Every social platform is a huge conversation taking place across the world 24 hours a day. Keeping track of what’s going on, and what’s being said about your brand, is impossible without a few tools. Take some time to consider what you need to focus on with your brand:
- sharing content
- tracking conversations
- competitor analysis
And choose the right tool from the list above.
By harnessing the right social media monitoring tools, you can start working towards your maximum potential for your social marketing efforts. You will have the knowledge to tailor your next campaigns properly after listening to what others have to say about you, your business and your content.
Matthew is the social media writer for the Devumi Social Marketing blog. You can find him there every single Friday with cutting edge ideas for your online audience, or you can check out the Devumi Gorilla on Twitter for updates all day.