Every day, 1.4 billion people connect to Facebook, more than 500 million tweets are published and 95 million photos are shared on Instagram. Social listening (or social media monitoring) allows brands to monitor social networks and analyze all the information, to learn from them.
Social listening refers to the activity of monitoring and analysis of messages published on social media in the broad sense (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, but also forums or sites of consumer opinion), on a specific subject. This practice serves several purposes: monitoring the e-reputation of a brand, competitive intelligence, trend analysis or the search for consumer insights. Thanks to the new social network analysis tools, this watch can be automated and be done in real-time. The results are usually presented in the form of dashboards, facilitating the analysis and the discovery of strategic information.
It has become commonplace to say that social media monitoring replaces these good old market studies, based on focus groups and checkboxes.
Indeed, social listening makes it possible to listen to a much wider panel that consumer meetings can never match, by surveying the foundations of several million people and growing steadily. It is also a much faster process since the analysis can be done almost instantaneously and in real-time, allowing a much more responsive response. The analyzed messages are not biased as can be those from a focus group where participants can be influenced in their responses by their interlocutor or the group around them. Finally, it is a process that requires less budget and human resources, since only a computer and a social listening tool are suitable.