If you want to boost sales and improve business communication with your customers, the first thing you need to do is listen to them. And listening to your customers begins way before your first conversation.
What exactly are you listening for?
- You need to learn who your customers are.
- You need to know what to communicate to them.
- You need to find out what your customers like and dislike about your product or service.
- You need to know what made them decide to buy your product.
- You need to know where your customers spend time online.
Basically, you need to learn more about your customers.
And social listening (aka social media monitoring) is the ultimate way of getting to know your customers better – well before they even become your customers, and without bothering them.
By monitoring online mentions of your business, you find out who your customers are and where they’re active on the Internet. Spending a few extra minutes to analyze your mentions (applying some filters will usually speed this up) shows you what your customers like and what kind of content they need from you.
And these mentions can also be a source of sales.
Online mentions in social media pretty much work like candid recommendations. They show you who’s talking about your product, where they’re talking about it, and then you can use this data to figure out how to increase brand awareness so you can get even more people talking about and recommending your business.
Mentions like the ones below tell you a lot about your customers – and they’re easy to find with media monitoring tools like Brand24.
They can look like this on Reddit:
Result in sales on Facebook:
And inspire purchases on Twitter:
Thanks to your recommendation last week I bought the digital album. Great music!!
— O’Flaherty Events (@oflahertyevents) April 16, 2018
Mentions like these contain a lot of information. See how much you can learn about your customers from a simple image on Insta, with a short, little caption:
What does a mention like this tell you about your customers?
- It tells you where your customers purchased your product (Costco)
- You find out why your customers chose your product (because it doesn’t contain canola oil, and black garlic is a well-liked flavor)
- You see what kind of information is important to your customers (the ingredients it contains – and doesn’t contain)
- You get insight into how they consume your product (which helps you find opportunities for potential partnerships, cross promotion and, of course, inspiration for marketing content)
- Seeing where the post came from (Instagram) tells you where your customers hang out, making this an important channel for content distribution, whether you’re looking for places to run advertisements, or want to try (Instagram) influencer marketing.
- And you get to learn about the general type of customers who are interested in your product (health-oriented people, such as professionals who work in nutritional therapy).
That’s a lot of important information about Hope Hummus customers from just one mention.
Not every mention will be so informative, but just knowing who and where your business is being talked about tells you a lot.
You can find mentions of your own business from all over the web with a media monitoring tool like Brand24. See what your customers think about your product or service – leveraging this information can make all the difference between effective business communications that drives sales vs ineffective business communication that falls on deaf ears.
How to boost sales by improving your business communication with your customers
1. Show your potential customers real recommendations from real customers
First of all, online recommendations from your customers and positive mentions can be a good source of sales:
That’s what I bought after you mentioned them! :)) They’re super affordable and the packaging is so much better and it’s saving space under my bathroom sink :))
— murders and amputations (@evilhome_stereo) March 15, 2018
Because these are real recommendations that people trust more than most advertisements.
Authentic recommendations from real customers boost credibility for your brand – and help turn your potential customers into real customers. If you find online recommendations for your business in your social listening data, you can embed them directly onto your website with the Brand24 Widget.
So your potential customers can see all of these these genuine recommendations – without leaving your website. Plus, mentions in the Widget are clickable, so your customers can see for themselves that this isn’t just false praise you’ve made up.
2. Emphasize what your customers like about your product or campaign in your business communication
When you find a positive mention for your business in your social listening data, expand the conversation to view replies to the original post. These comments can tell you more about what your customers like about your product or campaign, which is precisely what you need to emphasize in your business communication with your customers:
Oh wow! I didn’t know they donated to women in need. That’s dope
— Char 🌻 (@simplychar___) March 15, 2018
Most likely, your product isn’t the only one of its kind on the market. And besides doing everything you can do make your product & customer service stand out, what else matters to your customers?
90% of consumers are more likely to support a business if they know that the business also gives back to the community and is socially conscious. Does your business donate to any charities? Or maybe you sponsor or participate in events related to your favorite social causes. However you give back, these things matter. Make it a point in your customer communication to let your audience know that your business cares about more than just the bottom line.
3. Get more specific insight into what your customers like and dislike about your product
Don’t just stop at one mention; the tweet above and all its comments are actually the result of a retweet:
Stop purchasing regular pads and tampons (Always, Tampax, Playtex, Kotex, etc.) w/ chlorine, glyphosate and other toxins in them. Protect your vagina ✨ pic.twitter.com/9UxZ8c3JNm
— Char 🌻 (@simplychar___) March 14, 2018
The original post above provides more specific insight into the reasons why customers like your product (because it doesn’t contain toxic ingredients), informing you about the kind of information that needs to be part of your customer communications.
4. Find out how to improve your product and who your main competitors are
Sometimes you’ll also see responses that suggest other products instead of yours:
Or use menstrual cups which are better for your vagina, the environment, and your wallet!!
— cafe con leche (@madngod) March 14, 2018
Responses and suggestions like these are just as valuable as the ones actually recommending your product, because of the information they provide. They give you insight into how you could make your product better for your customers, as well as who your potential competitors may be.
5. See where your business can reach the most customers
Seeing positive mentions like this take place on Twitter is a good indicator that this is a platform which deserves closer attention from your customer success team. Brand24 analyzes and filters all your media monitoring data automatically to generate a list of your Most Active Sites, where your business is most often talked about online.
If your happy customers are talking about your product and recommending it to their friends and followers, chances are, your unhappy customers are also publicly voicing their complaints.
When you come across negative comments in your social listening data, don’t let them pile up. Follow this 6-step plan to assess the situation and respond to negative customer feedback tactfully. Before it has a chance to go viral.
And since this is where people who like your product hang out, it’s also the perfect place to expand your advertising and marketing:
- Place advertisements and distribute marketing content on this platform.
- Drive the effects by working with (Twitter) influencers who match your brand well, so you can generate even more buzz for your business and get more customers talking about and recommending your product.
6. Learn who your customers are
Once you find mentions of your business, all you have to do is click on those little round avatars to get to know your customers a little better, including all those people who actively recommend your product, as well as those who purchased your product because of their recommendation.
What do people who are interested in your project have in common? Are they vegans? Are they environmentalists? Who are the people behind the avatars?
Monitor online mentions of your company to boost sales and improve business communication with your customers
Knowing who your customers are is key to effective business communication. Get to know them by listening to them so you can find out what they like and dislike about your product – without bothering them.
If you haven’t already, create a media monitoring project with Brand24 and monitor online mentions of your business across the web (the free trial lasts for 2 weeks – no credit card required).
Here’s how to set up your first project:
Once you start to see mentions for your business in your social listening data, apply the tips above. Improve your business communication with your customers by getting to know them better and learning about what they like and dislike about your product or service – which is knowledge that will help you boost sales!
If you have any questions or something you want to add, leave a comment below and let’s chat!