The 6 most important do’s & don’ts of social media monitoring
For many organisations, online media monitoring is quite important when making strategic choices. More and more communication professionals base their communication strategies on data. Data-driven strategies are the future, and organisations recognise the importance of this. However, there are still some questions that surround media monitoring and as an organisation, if you apply it correctly, you can get even more results. What can you do with media monitoring? Where do you start? And what exactly do you have to do in order to get the right kind of data? In this blog, I’ve listed the 6 most important dos and don’ts to help you along!
DO: Make someone responsible for social media monitoring
Social media is always ‘on’. Where offline messages spread more slowly, online reporting continues all day. Even the smallest messages can affect your brand reputation. Social media monitoring is therefore not something that you ‘just add’ to your organisation. Especially not when a crisis breaks out in which immediate action is expected from your organisation. Think, for example, of a wrong type of response from a webcare employee that suddenly goes viral, or an ‘accident’ or mishap occurs about which messages quickly start appearing on social media. Such events directly affect a brand’s reputation. At times like these it’s good to have a person in charge who directly guides the media monitoring process, informs the right people, and doesn’t panic. This person is pre-eminently patient, can ‘switch over’ quickly, and thinks in solutions.
An example of a good and efficient approach is that of the communications team at the Medical Centre Leeuwarden because, in crisis situations, different roles are divided among the team and one person is directly responsible for monitoring incoming messages on social media. Read more about this success story!
DO: Use social media monitoring tools
In order to keep a good eye on your organisation’s reputation, you could have someone in your marketing or communications team be responsible for keeping a good eye on all the channels (Twitter, Facebook, NU.nl, Branchenieuws.nl, Instagram, YouTube, etc.). Because the good thing is that nowadays there are a lot of handy, user-friendly tools available that make social media monitoring a lot easier. Are you just starting out with media monitoring? A free tool, such as Hootsuite, offers easy solutions for different channels and allows you to respond via this tool as well.
Looking for a social media monitoring tool that can really help you further in the field of reputation management? Then more advanced tools are probably necessary. With such monitoring tools, it’s possible to get graphs from volumes and coverage of the messages, but it also offers the possibility for sentiment analysis, stakeholder monitoring and making easy reports for internal use.
DO: Incorporate relevant reputation pillars
In order to ensure optimal reputation management, it’s important to focus on pillars that are important for your organisation. For example, by including the RepTrak© model
in online media monitoring, you can structurally measure how your brand’s reputation is doing and where you may need to make adjustments. The model is based on seven dimensions, with twenty-three characteristics, and, with the right kinds of searches, can easily be integrated into a tool.
Does your organisation come across online as an innovative company? Do you come across online as sustainable? By monitoring these things monthly, weekly or even daily, you will start gaining more and more insight into the online reputation of your brand. You’ll also see when situations threaten to get out of hand or where you may need to make adjustments if you want to maintain or achieve a desired reputation.
A nice addition to the reputation pillars is the OBI RepScore from OBI4wan. Read more about the OBI RepScore right here!
DON’T: Panic. Stay cool and stay focused
The world of (social) media monitoring is a big one. The number of messages that organisations receive per day can sometimes be anywhere between 1,000 and 10,000. Good monitoring helps to get a clear overview of all this reporting. Note: these are also in regard to messages that you may not even have come across. An overview of this reporting can provide many new insights that can, in turn, provide new ideas and solutions.
However, you’ll probably also come across a lot of negative reporting that you had previously overlooked. Don’t panic! Look past the negativity and read carefully about what your target group actually thinks. Are there certain patterns? Or is it always the same people who are being negative? Bring these things up within the organisation and try to think of solutions. Media monitoring can actually help in adjusting your reputation, because now you’ve gotten some good insights into what is being said about your brand. Think of it as a great opportunity that can greatly benefit your organisation.
Because you get more information through monitoring, there’s a good chance that this information will also contain important and critical questions from, for example, consumers, external stakeholders and interest groups. It’s important that you’re able to answer these questions clearly in order to maintain, and even strengthen, your reputation. Put the most important questions together on a Q&A page.
Also, don’t forget that responses through public channels are visible to everyone. It is therefore even more important that you are unambiguous in the answers you give to the questions posted. And inform your organisation’s customer service about these questions. They are in direct contact with the customer and have a major influence on the brand’s reputation. Responding quickly, clearly and unambiguously to important questions means you won’t have to compromise your reputation.
DON’T: Forget to ask questions yourself
Be constantly alert to changes in the buying behaviour of your customers or the expectations they have. By constantly asking yourself how they see your brand and what they think of something, you can specifically monitor those answers. For example, do you want to know how a campaign was recently launched? Include this campaign name and related topics in your search.
This will give you real-time insight into the sentiment, volume and media value surrounding the campaign. By continuously asking yourself questions, you can gain further understanding into whether your current strategy is successful, or whether you might need to adjust it.