In our digital world, social strategy should be at the forefront of your marketing team’s minds. The importance of all online tools has increased exponentially since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, but the ability to hear what people are saying about your organization within their own social circles can give you the insights you need to make the most informed and strategic decisions. Social listening tools can provide you with the data to make those decisions.
We knew that if we listened, we couldn’t go wrong.
According to a Pew Research Center report, 72% of U.S. adults and 3.5 billion people worldwide use some form of social media. When broken down by generation, a whopping but unsurprising 90.4% of millennials (now 24–39 years old) report engaging with at least one platform. Gen Z (8–23 years old) is poised to be the most digitally engaged group we have ever seen, usually active on multiple platforms. They are 59% more likely than the general population to engage with a brand on social media, according to a Nielsen report.
Every marketing team is discussing the best way to reach these audience segments. However, you might not be drawing insights from these nuanced social spaces fully. Social listening is a simple but meaningful addition to your team’s marketing strategy. At Lipman Hearne, we have these tools, and we can show you how to use them.
Social listening tools allow brands to track, analyze, and respond to online conversations about their organizations as well as their competition. A brilliant example of social listening in action comes from the city of Seattle, which was recently awarded the 32nd NHL franchise. To create and develop the team’s new name and brand identity, the Seattle franchise, led by majority owner David Bonderman, deployed social listening tactics for more than 18 months to hear what Pacific Northwest fans wanted most. The Seattle Kraken was born—and the name and mark were a thing of beauty. “We knew if we listened, we couldn’t go wrong,” Seattle Hockey CEO Tod Leiweke said.
Using social listening as a research tool to monitor sentiment on your campus or within your organization can give you the ability to quickly connect with your audiences, predict what’s coming next—or even crowdsource the name for your new athletics team! What’s more, it gives you invaluable information about what’s important to your audience right now. In this fraught moment, your audiences are paying close attention to the views and opinions your organization shares—because it’s important that they find their own values reflected in what you say and do.
Consumers—especially Gen Z—are increasingly concerned about the values behind a brand as much as the brand or service itself. Listening to people’s experiences with the COVID-19 pandemic in an unsolicited and natural way will give you a chance to respond to your community and focus efforts where needed. Monitoring the feelings around social and racial equity on your campus or within your institution will provide you with crucial information to pivot strategic and structural initiatives.
Social listening and social strategy can help you be part of the conversation your students, members, donors, or other key audiences are having, allowing you to refine your offerings and communication strategies to meet their needs.
Your digital strategy is more important now than ever before. Shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a social listening consultation. We’d love to talk!