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Social analytics tell you what consumers are saying – about your brand, other brands, and any number of other topics. But then what? What you do with the information coming in is just as important as the data itself.

Engaging your audience intentionally

Social media monitoring offers the opportunity to uncover consumer stories at a deeply personal level – a necessity if you’re going to join the conversation authentically, i.e., the only way consumers will allow. Sales pitches are easily ignored on social media, so marketers need to be savvy with their approach if they want to connect with audiences and build loyalty.

Integrating NetBase with social engagement platforms like Hootsuite and Spredfast makes that process seamless – so you can focus on intentional efforts to engage your audience in the best ways.

Here are some business areas to apply integrated solutions – and why you should:

1. Marketing isn’t just about campaigns

The most obvious use case is still a complex one – since it’s not just big-event marketing campaigns that matter, but the day-to-day outreach resulting in overall share of voice for your brand.

Once you’ve used your social listening tools to identify consumers interacting with your brand, you need to create audience segments based on their wants, loves and needs beyond your brand. This is how you make engagement personal and human, cultivating loyalty through individualized experiences.

Using tools like Hootsuite and Spredfast to deliver your precisely targeted messaging keeps outreach consistent, which is crucial to maintaining brand awareness and share of voice.

But you can also expand your reach by identifying conversations outside of your owned social channels and amplifying them with the help of brand advocates. Anyone positively raving about your products, or an experience with your brand, is someone you want to know about.

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But it’s not enough to reap the accolades as assurance your brand is doing something right. You want to amplify those conversations so everyone on social knows your brand is amazing – and wants in. And you want to reach out to the most passionate of those influencers and entice them to become part of your social team.

2. Prioritizing customer care

What about the people – few though you hope they’ll be – negatively raving about your brand online? Those consumers are perhaps more important to engage than your biggest fans – because they can do a lot of damage in a short time if you’re not paying attention.

Here again it’s paramount to understand what’s happening not just on your owned channels, but across the entirety of the social web. Integrated platforms let you operate more efficiently by accurately pinpointing the conversations that matter most, and segmenting by things like:

  • Operational issues – like a product malfunction with widespread ramifications
  • Location – like a region running out of product faster than others, or having issues with your website due to weather, etc.
  • Influence level – your most loyal customers, and those with the most passionate/far-reaching voices need your immediate attention, whereas trolls and haters without any influence don’t

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Being able to categorize customer care issues in this way, addressing the highest priority streams first, is more efficient – making consumers happier as a result of quick resolution, and reducing costs in this business area.

3. Keeping brand crises at bay

The key to managing a reputational crisis is to avoid one if at all possible. That’s much more doable when you have social media monitoring tools capable of alerting you to high priority spikes in negative conversation – and a platform for immediate outreach for resolving consumer issues.

The faster you can respond to consumers during a crisis, the better your chances of resolving the situation to their satisfaction, and the better your chances of keeping them loyal to your brand. Sometimes the way you handle a bad situation or complaint does more for your image than the most clever ad campaign ever could.

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4. Driving sales

Obviously the end-game for all brand marketing efforts is profits – which requires social consumers to actually make a purchase at some point in the cycle. Use social analytics to identify the perfect time and channel, then use your social engagement platform to engage your audience with targeted offers designed to convert.

Or use engagement to bring consumers into your process – soliciting feedback on product ideas, product design and packaging, etc. It’s like an always-on focus group, but you get results much faster, and it costs a lot less. Nothing engenders loyalty more than feeling invested in the process of creation – and it’s a guaranteed sale to boot.

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Social media analytics are a gateway to the voice of the customer – and a brand “must.” But without next steps, the data is just that. You’ve got to take action on the insights you acquire or nothing will happen. So put your social engagement platforms to work – that’s what they’re there for, and why we’ve made it part of our offering.

For more on how NetBase pairs seamlessly with platforms like Hootsuite, Spredfast and Domo, reach out!

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Image from Squire Morley

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