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Re-think social media monitoring with Twitter

May 3, 2009

This is the year of social media monitoring. Companies will come out swinging offering reputation management software in the guise of listening products. They will promise to search blogs, social media (including social bookmarking), and generate reports. Those reports will give brands an idea of the chatter.

For reputation management.

Meaning, they will be the first to uncover the next Domino’s or Motrin fiasco. Or whatever.

But here’s what I think. I think, as things stand, Twitter and simple blog alerts from Technorati, google, and/or Yahoo will suffice.

Blogs are where it will start. It was a blog that started Domino’s and Motrin. And it will be a blog that starts the next social media ‘crisis’. But it will be Twitter that spreads it.

Because Twitter is excellent for spreading. So good, that Twitter’s real time search will find a blog post before any of the alerts do. If someone tweets about the post with the words crisis, then just about anyone at the brand can be aware. It’s not hard to monitor Twitter. In fact, it’s dead easy.

So, it’s my contention that if it doesn’t make it to Twitter, then it’s not that big of a deal.

That said, it doesn’t mean that you can’t use tools to hear the conversations going on. These conversations are excellent for getting ideas. I use a Yahoo Pipe to search social media. But I don’t use it to monitor a client’s reputation.

For that, I think Twitter is enough. What do you think?

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. May 3, 2009 11:19 pm

    I agree that Twitter is really powerful for spreading blog posts and promoting blogs. For this reason, it is a great listening tool. I came across a web-based tool called Perspctv that allows you to listen to tweets, blogs and news items about what’s being said about your company or brand.

    I agree that if companies still are not convinced of the ROI of social media, they need to at least begin listening. Thanks for the post.

    • May 4, 2009 10:24 am

      Mike, thanks for Perspectv. Awesome even if it’s white on black, something that looks like crap to me every time I see it.

      Companies that I talk to agree they should listen. They always ask, then what. That’s why we offer the crisis plans as well.

  2. May 4, 2009 9:49 am

    Not sure I agree that Twitter is “enough”… Twitter is very good for this, as a dissemination tool, but I think that brands need leverage where their markets are – and sometimes a cross platform approach is required.

    There are specifics of engagement that different platforms do better than others – for example, I’ve been working with the Vancouver Canucks recently – their Facebook Page has grown from 25K to 86K+ in just under 2 months… while their Twitter followers went from 600 to just under 6000 in the same time. There is a different engagement factor with a sports team/brand – and Facebook is doing a better job (right now) at telling the fans’ story.

    Twitter is easier to extract info from as well – simple and powerful – but I’d shy away from “enough”…

    Thanks,

    Carson

    • May 4, 2009 10:22 am

      Hi Carson, I think it’s enough if you’re listening for a crisis. Take your Canucks example: with a lot of conversations on Twitter and Facebook, if the Sedin Twins got busted, you would hear about it on Twitter first. Or it would be a tie between Facebook and Twitter.

      A quality network the size of your Canuck one can actually be a listening tool as well (people will listen for you).

      And I don’t think you should stop searching the net for content to share with the community (Flickr images of games, parties, etc). That’s different.

      But for reputation management, I think Twitter is enough.

      BTW, congrats on those numbers. I suspect they’ll increase if the Canucks have a deep run. Do fans get deals at the arena?

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