There’s a good reason that so many social media marketers are completely obsessed with Twitter. As one of the few truly unmoderated, open-to-everyone social media platforms, Twitter is an excellent place to find out how real customers feel about a brand and its products. In terms of social media monitoring, Twitter is an ideal platform to gather the kind of raw, unfiltered customer data that your marketing team need to craft compelling social media campaigns.
That’s not to say that Twitter doesn’t have some drawbacks. It’s an incredibly noisy place, and at any given moment it’s filled with tens of thousands of conversations that have nothing to do with your brand. Without the right social listening tools, finding and following relevant conversations on Twitter is functionally impossible. Once you have the right tools (and understand how to use them), however, Twitter suddenly becomes an unbeatable source for deep insights into customer sentiment, brand awareness, and other essential social metrics.
If you want to master the fundamentals of social media monitoring, Twitter is easily the best place to start. But how do you actually get started? Let’s take a look at five of the most effective ways to use Twitter in social media monitoring.
- Track your brand mentions. If you only do one thing on Twitter, it should be to search for mentions of your brand and products. Always check your mentions — search for @yourbrand and #yourbrand — just to get an overview of what conversations are happening around your brand. (You can also expand this search to include product names.) Twitter’s built-in search tools are fairly limited, however, so consider using a dedicated social listening tool that pulls directly from Twitter’s API.
- Analyze the competition. It’s always a good idea to know how your potential customers feel about your rivals and their products. If a competitor has fumbled in their marketing, or one of their products isn’t living up to the hype, you can bet that people will be talking about it on Twitter. Not only does this allow you to incorporate this information into your marketing strategy, but it also provides you with an opportunity to engage with your rival’s customers directly.
- Research relevant marketing keywords. When people are looking for a solution to their product “pain points,” they tend to use similar language to describe the problem. Part of the digital marketer’s job is to collect the keywords and phrases that people use when they need a new solution, using this information to create highly targeted advertisements. Twitter provides a perfect opportunity to identify the exact words real customers use when seeking out a product.
- Identify key influencers and advocates. Even though the term “social media influencer” has become somewhat devalued in recent years, the concept behind it is still important to understand. Every market, niche, and industry has influential people in it, and it’s always a good idea to know exactly who these people are. Once you’ve identified them, you can make contact and start to build up a relationship. Some of them may already be advocates for your brand, singing your products’ praises without any kind of compensation. Others will be more than happy to mention or endorse your products to their audience for a fee. Twitter is the ideal place to find influencers, as the size of their audience is posted right on their profile. With the right tools, you can even get an accurate estimate of their total audience engagement and reach.
- Gauge brand sentiment. If you ever want to know exactly how people feel about your brand — the good and the bad — just ask them on Twitter. You’ll get blasted by the most sincere praise and cruelest criticism you’ve ever read. Or, if you want to be a bit more subtle, you could use sentiment analysis tools to give you a general idea of what your customers are already saying.
In terms of social media monitoring, Twitter is an invaluable resource. At the same time, Twitter is an unimaginably active platform, and trying to find a clear signal in the noise there is simply impossible without the right tools. If your brand is serious about its social media monitoring, consider investing in a professional-grade media intelligence and social monitoring solution. Tools make monitoring your social media presence faster and easier, delivering exceptional value while reducing costs and increasing ROI.