The ultimate guide to social listening with top 10 social listening tools and case studies [2021 update]

Chia
July 6, 2020 ・ 27 min read

Social listening lets you keep an eye on online mentions containing your brand name. You can listen to online conversations and never miss anything important. But what’s next? How can you use social listening to your benefit?

Social listening is a term that’s virtually everywhere these days. Lots of people talk about it, even more, are using it, but few have taken the time to explain it. Social listening should be an indispensable part of your marketing strategy.

Undoubtedly, social listening can help you grow your business. Monitoring conversations around your brand can give you many insights that will improve your presence on social media channels, help manage customer complaints, or track your competitors movements.

But that’s not all. Using social listening should be an indispensable part of your marketing activities.

How to create a social listening strategy? Do you need dedicated social listening tools? And how exactly can you make sure that social listening process helps your company?

Hopefully, you can find the answers to all these questions in this blog post. We also included a list of the top 10 social listening tools and a bunch of case studies, so you can see the practical application of social listening.

You’ll often hear the words data, analytics, and statistics attached to social listening, and while this may seem intimidating, it’s really not that scary. You’ll see how easy it is to manage below.

We will start with the ins and outs of social listening. In the second part of this blog post, we’ll get to know our selection of the best social listening tools available in 2021.

We covered both social listening and social media listening tools in this article.

What is social listening?

Social listening consists of two parts — monitoring and analysing.

First, you need to monitor what is being said about the topic you’re interested in. The easiest way to do that is to set up a brand monitoring project. Once you create a project, the tool will collect all publicly available mentions containing your keyword.

Once the social monitoring process is over, social listening starts.

Social listening takes the process one step further. Social listening analyses gathered brand mentions, so you’re able to draw the most actionable conclusions that will help you achieve your business goals.

Social listening ads some valuable data to social monitoring, for example:

  • sentiment analysis of the online mentions. You will know what people like and dislike about your online presence.
  • estimated reach. You will be able to identify the best performing content and emulate the posts to reach your target audience.
  • top public profiles. This feature will help you identify influencers you could work with to raise your brand awareness.
  • most active sites. This will indicate where you should focus your social media activities.

What is social media listening used for?

Companies use social listening because brand awareness is the key difference between an effective strategy vs an ineffective strategy.

When a company has access to public mentions and conversations about their brand or product — among other topics relevant to their business — they can use this data to fine-tune and boost their strategies. And identify where necessary changes need to be implemented.

Brand awareness and customer opinions about your products and campaigns are crucial to creating strategies that work. Listening tools help you with that process.

  1. The first step to gaining brand awareness (and maintaining it) starts with finding the conversations that are relevant to your business. Social listening tools like Brand24 make this painless.
  2. The next step is to put your thinking caps on and apply social listening to the data. Social listening is about understanding what all these conversations mean for your brand.

Basically, social media monitoring is the beginning and foundation of social listening. It’s how you find online conversations that are relevant to your company and round up all the necessary data.

To truly understand what all those individual conversations mean for your company, you have to apply your social listening skills and look at all the data together as a whole in order to get a clear view of the bigger picture. This awareness will allow you to make more accurate predictions so you can create effective strategies.

That’s the idea behind ‘What is social listening used for?’.

Still with me? Great!

Now, let’s move onto the use cases of social listening.

Purposes of social listening

The usefulness of social listening is abundant. Imagine having unlimited access to your own personal focus group! One that consists of users from all backgrounds and every corner of the market, who openly give you candid feedback — about your brand, your product and your strategies.

That’s what social listening is about; finding all those online conversations that you’re interested in, so you can get customer feedback about your product, your company, your strategies — and anything else that may be relevant to your business.

This is how you get candid feedback without disturbing your customers.

Which is why companies use social listening in:

  • generating leads
  • customer service
  • getting customer feedback
  • improving or preparing a new product tailored to your potential customers’ needs by implementing sentiment analysis
  • customer engagement
  • tracking the progress of a marketing campaign
  • identifying brand ambassadors & candidates for influencer marketing
  • reputation management
  • competitor analysis
  • content creation and distribution
  • improving your customer experience
  • closely monitoring social media and preparing the content your target audience wants to interact with
  • increasing brand awareness
  • gather more accurate social media analytics data
  • and much more…

To show you all benefits of this method we prepared a list of 12 ways listening can help you grow, including social listening case studies! First, let’s learn how to start social listening.

How to start social listening?

The listening process is quite simple, given you have the right brand monitoring tool at hand. Of course, you can do the process manually, but it’s much more time-consuming and less effective. 

It’s easy to get started with a social listening tool. All of the social media monitoring tools base on similar premise, so I’ll discuss the matter based on Brand24. 

You start with creating a social media monitoring project. In the project creation wizard enter the keywords you would like to track. Think about:

  • the name of your brand, product, or service
  • your company hashtag
  • your campaign-specific hashtag
  • your CEO’s name or any other prominent employee
  • keywords related to your business niche.

Next, you also have to choose the online sources where the tool will look for online conversations. The broader you go, the more non-social and social media data you will be able to analyse. The top online sources you should focus on include:

  • social media platforms, including Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, Twitch, or TikTok
  • news and review sites
  • blogs
  • podcasts
  • newsletter
  • other publicly available online sources

Once you monitor and analyse all publicly available information about your company, you can analyse your brand perception and social media presence in-depth.

Social listening tools will collect every available mention and analyse the results thoroughly, leaving you with some actionable insights you can use to improve our online presence.

The benefits of social listening

Using social listening data can be a bit challenging. Here are a few important social listening use cases that show how it can help you improve customer satisfaction and grow your business. Let’s take a look at the table of contents and find the most beneficial solution for your business.

12 powerful ways social listening can grow your business

  1. Improve your customer service
  2. Find new leads
  3. Track and measure your marketing campaigns
  4. Improve customer engagement
  5. Access customer insights
  6. Identify social media influencers
  7. Protect your brand reputation
  8. Reveal purchase decision factors
  9. Prepare content tailored to your audience needs
  10. Find top talents for your company
  11. Back up your marketing and competitors research
  12. Measure the value of your organic search.

1. Improve your customer service

Customer service is a very popular application of social listening — and an effective one at that, as the Internet has become the place for people to: rant about poor experiences with products and services, look for solutions to problems, and commend brands on good service, etc…

It’s just easier for customers to tweet at a brand on Twitter instead of trying to reach an automated call center… and then get put on hold for hours just so they can ask a simple question that isn’t on your website (but should be).

Start social listening with Brand24

Social listening gives brands a big leg up when it comes to taking care of customers who’ve encountered problems with their product.

It’s a simple fact: people hate waiting almost as much as they hate to be ignored. The sooner you can provide service to your customers, the better.

Social media monitoring tools (like Brand24) collect questions and complaints about your brand as soon as they’re posted, so your customer service representatives can answer any questions or handle any problems as soon as possible.

2. Find new leads

Apart from providing good service for your customers, social listening also helps you gain new ones by generating sales leads. The key is to listen for mentions of keywords that are relevant to your goals.

In this case, it’s a good idea to monitor several types of keywords, including: your product or service, particular product features, specific industry terms related to your business, the name of your brand or company, and your competitors. Monitor mentions of these keywords with social listening to find potential leads who have an active interest in your type of product or service.

It is so easy for customers to ask for online recommendations and search for advice on the web before making any purchase decisions now. In the span of just one month, Brand24 collected almost 45,000 mentions that included the question “where can I buy”.  There is enormous space for brands to join in on the conversation and suggest their products to prospects who really need them.

Create your first project! Discover the power of social listening

We use Brand24 ourselves to find people who are looking for recommendations for good social media listening tools.

Our community managers then do a great job of interacting with these users to let them know about Brand24. This is one of our best methods of identifying new leads and has one of the highest conversion rates, too.

Why? Because we reach out to people who have a real need for our product.

An ultimate guide to social listening — community manager interaction with sales lead

3. Track and measure your marketing campaigns

Nowadays, it is pretty common to see a dedicated hashtag accompany a marketing campaign, especially since it has proven to be one of the most effective ways to increase both reach and user engagement.

Monitoring online conversations on different social channels will help you gather the social media data that could benefit your brand’s marketing campaigns. Social media tracking tools automatically calculate reach, engagement, sentiment, and other metrics useful for assessing your marketing efforts.

Moreover, you can easily export the data to show your customers the value of social listening.

Discover social listening!

4. Use social media listening for customer engagement

These days, more brands than ever are engaging in online conversations with their fans and clients. Once a user posts something on the Internet that is related to either a brand or an entire industry, social media managers are there to interact with the audience.

This is a great way to increase customer engagement on the Internet, extend your online reach and win over your audience. If your response is timely, intelligent and humorous yet consistent with your brand image (you should not be making jokes if your company’s profile is very formal), you can easily grab your audience’s attention.

An ultimate guide to social listening - a screenshot of a tweet waiting for brand to engage with it

Uber or Stabucks.. You should have engaged with this lovely customer, but you left them wainting for your response.

5. Access customer insights

Today’s consumers are more open to sharing their opinions and reviews about the products or services that they use (or maybe they just have more avenues of doing so now).

Naturally, the easiest way to share is on the Internet, where users can post about their experiences using different products and brands — and automatically share these posts with many other consumers. Frequently, this is also where users provide candid suggestions and feedback on these goods and services. The Internet is a powerful source of valuable customer insights.

An ultimate guide to social listening - a screenshot of an example online customer insight
An ultimate guide to social listening -a  screenshot of an example online customer insight
An ultimate guide to social listening - a screenshot of an example online customer insight

Discover the power of social listening!

6. Identify social media influencers

Collaborating with social media influencers can bring you measurable results. Of course, it’s best to work with influencers who are genuinely interested in your company or its value proposition.

An ultimate guide to social listening — print screen showing the most influential online mentions

Social listening makes it possible for you to discover social media influencers who would be a good match to work with your brand.

If you are listening for mentions of your brand / company / business across the Internet, you can see what kind of people post about these topics inside the Brand24 Analysis Tab. The top profiles talking about your brand may be potential influencers that you can work with, and some of them may have cultivated significant followings.

An ultimate guide to social listening — print screen showing the most influential public profiles you can use to benefit your business

However, just because someone may have mentioned your brand in their posts doesn’t necessarily mean that he or she will resonate with what your brand is promoting.

When searching for influencers, it’s important to also refer to the data from at least one more column inside the Analysis Tab: Share of Voice (Voice Share in the image). This metric considers the social media reach + total number of mentions of each profile; these factors combined inform us on the role that these profiles played in the total number of the discussions about your brand as a whole on the Internet.

If a user has a high Share of Voice for mentions of your brand, it means they generate more discussions about it. This indicates that they could be good potential brand ambassadors or influencers for you to work with. You can also filter by Influencer Score in the Mentions (or Sources) Tab to view profiles according to influence.

7. Protect your brand reputation

This is the most common and obvious social listening use case, and an extremely important one as well. Very often, a fast response to a negative review or fake comment can prevent a brand reputation crisis.

For instance, brandjacking is when someone impersonates a brand online, often with malicious intent, and it can cause a lot of damage to your reputation if not spotted early on. These virtual imposters can post anything they want to hurt your business and make you look bad in front of your customers.

An ultimate guide to social listening - a print screen showing brand's answer to a negative opinion

If you discover a fake profile like this early enough, you can immediately rectify the situation and nip social outrage in the bud.

This also concerns unsatisfied customers who complain about your service or product. If you can spot their public comments before too many people see them, you can try to solve the problem before it gets out of hand.

8. Reveal purchase decision factors

Learning which factors have the greatest influence on customer purchase decisions is possibly the most valuable customer insight you can derive from social listening. Recommendations that are left on web forums and other online platforms often include detailed descriptions of a user’s experience with a product or service, which can influence consumer decisions.

An ultimate guide to social listening - a screenshot showing a tweet that is an example of customers shopping behavior
An ultimate guide to social listening - a screenshot showing a tweet that is an example of customers shopping behavior
An ultimate guide to social listening - a screenshot showing a tweet that is an example of customers shopping behavior

9. Prepare content tailored to your audience needs

Social listening is widely used by many bloggers who are looking for content inspiration. All bloggers and writers have probably struggled at some point with finding ideas on what to write about. Social listening tools can be a big help here by providing you with insights into what is trending on the Internet and what people want to read about.

It’s a fairly simple process; you just need to monitor relevant keywords. Naturally, keyword selection depends on your industry and topic of your blog.

For example, let’s take a blog that helps companies find solutions to develop their business. In this case, we should think about the catchiest key phrases related to this topic. Which tags and hashtags do they use? What are the most common words in this field?

In this case, we are interested in “growth hacking”, “grow your business” and “business growth” (separated with commas), which often appear as buzzwords in relation to tips, strategies, and tricks for business development.

Don’t forget to also include these phrases as hashtags!

One of our clients — Veeu Network, a digital video company, uses social listening precisely in this area. Before writing any scripts for new videos, they first dig into recent social media discussions to find the most relevant topics of the moment according to their fans.

Check out this social listening case study: Veeu Network’s video strategies.

10. Find top talents for your company

Human Resources is another department that can benefit from this reseach method. People post about everything on Including, including when they’re searching for a job. HR specialists who know how to use social listening as a recruitment tool are able to find a broader pool of potential candidates to fill an urgent vacancy in less time.

You can easily set up a project to monitor phrases like “looking for a job”, “I need a job”, etc. Results can be curbed to specific geographic regions and industries by adding ‘Required keywords’.

Once Brand24 collects some mentions, you’re ready to start reaching out to potential employees. Respond to their tweets or posts on LinkedIn, or send private messages asking for more details about their personal background. Who you reach out to and the questions you ask are totally up to you, and depends on the job.

11. Back up your marketing and competitor research

Do you plan to introduce a new product or implement a social media campaign? Or do you want to know what your competitors are up to?

Social listening will help you spot all mentions that are relevant to your business. And that include listening to conversations about your direct and indirect competitors.

An ultimate guide to social listening — print screen from a media monitoring tool  that will help you do your market research

There are many ways to approach this and social listening is one of the most reliable methods. You can derive a lot of information about your target group based on the data that you monitor, including: user demographics, preferred online channels, and when your audience is most active — not to mention their levels of engagement, context of public discussions, and much more.

An ultimate guide to social listening - a graph showing main threads in discussion

This data can help you design the most effective marketing strategy. You can learn where you should implement your campaign, the best days/weeks/months to run it, the best hours for posting on social (visible inside the Brand24 Excel report) and it also shows you the kind of language you should use in order to convey your message in a way that will resonate with your prospects and clients.

Of course, there’s much more that you can learn from media monitoring data.

12. Measure the value of organic reach

Measuring the value of your organic (free!) reach is especially useful for agencies and CMOs that need to report the results of their strategies to a board of directors — in the form of tangible numbers.

Traditional marketing focuses on outdoor, TV, or press advertisements, and pays less attention to online channels. This is a (costly) waste, as marketing data from online channels is actually much more accurate and measurable than data from offline sources.

For instance, you cannot precisely estimate how many people have made a purchase decision after watching a TV commercial. However, if you display the same ad online, you can collect precise information about conversion rates at each step of the customer acquisition process.

An effective social listening tool, like Brand24, can help you estimate the value of online discussions about your brand. Taking into consideration factors such as: the size of the profiles that mention your brand, and the reach of their content + number of interactions — you can learn how many people have potentially seen mentions regarding your brand.

An ultimate guide to social listening - a screenshot showing data like social media reach

Using this data, you can effectively calculate the estimated value of these mentions and discussions regarding your brand.

The Estimated Reach is equivalent to the amount of exposure that you receive from your online marketing activities.

Another metric that Brand24 came up with is called Presence Score that helps you find out if a certain enterprise or topic is popular online and measure brand awareness.

An ultimate guide to social listening - a screenshot showing the presence score

Not only does social listening show you how many people have encountered online content about your brand, your campaigns, and your products — it also helps you estimate the online advertising value, (AVE) which is the real market value of an asset in terms of the average market cost of advertising after discounts.

An ultimate guide to social listening - a screenshot from Analysis tab showing data

Try Brand24 for free now and grow your business with powerful social listening!

Social listening tools

There are different social listening tools — there are enterprise solutions, that offer image recognition and other fancy analytical features. There are social media listening tools that collect and analyze social media mentions. And lastly, there is a tool like Brand24 — an affordable option that monitors the Web and social media and offers robust analytics and reporting features.

Without further ado, here’s our list!

Top 10 social listening tools

We’ve selected the best social listening and social media tracking tools to spoil you for choice. Whether you’re looking for robust and affordable social listening software or more advanced solutions for enterprises, we got you covered!

Some social media listening tools focus on social media platforms, for example, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or YouTube. Other tools collect and analyze mentions of your brand from the whole Web, including social media and other platforms.

  1. Brand24
  2. Brandwatch
  3. Tweetdeck
  4. Tweetreach
  5. Buffer
  6. Sprout Social
  7. Keyhole
  8. Hootsuite
  9. BuzzSumo
  10. HubSpot

1. Brand24

I bet you didn’t expect that, did you?

Brand24 is one of the most robust and affordable social listening tool on the market.

The tool covers a wide variety of sources, including:

  • social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Twitch
  • review sites
  • news sites
  • blogs
  • newsletters
  • podcasts
  • other publicly available Web sources

Brand24 is a successful brand monitoring tool since it collects mentions of your brand in real-time.

A print screen from Brand24's dashboard showing metrics and analytics

It is a web monitoring tool with robust analytics section. The mentions are stored in a user-friendly dashboard.

Inside the tool you will find metrics such as:

  • estimated social media reach — to tell you how many people could have come in contact with your social media posts
  • non-social reach — to tell you how many people seen the posts containing your brand name outside social media
  • sentiment analysis — to see how your brand, product, or campaign is perceived online
  • performance of your hashtags to help you assess the results of your marketing campaigns
  • the total number of social media likes, shares, and comments
  • the most popular mentions
  • top public profiles talking about your brand
  • the share of voice
  • influence score
  • Presence Score that helps to measure and benchmark brand awareness

Social media sentiment analysis is powered by machine learning algorithms, making it capable of delivering accurate results and enriching your business intelligence.

social listening tools, example of dashboard

Another strong suit of Brand24 is the notification system. Every time there is a new mention in the dashboard, you can receive an in-app notification, a mail, or integrate your account with a dedicated Slack channel.

What’s more, Brand24 offers customisable PDF reports. You can choose what mentions and analytics you want to include in your media monitoring report and the tool will automatically generate one.

Brand24 collects publicly available mentions and report them in real time.

Pricing

Brand24 offers a 14-day free trial.

It is very flexible since right away it offers 3 pricing plans that you can choose from, depending on your needs, expectations, and budget.

Brand24’s price starts at $49 a month.

2. Brandwatch

Brandwatch is an enterprise-level social listening tool. It offers a wide range of functionalities, but it is one of the most expensive tools on the market.

Brandwatch is a holistic social listening tool, which means it not only covers major social media platforms, such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Youtube, or Twitch, but also blogs and news sites, forums, and review sites.

Brandwatch offers features such as:

  • geolocation
  • image analysis
  • powerful demographic data to learn more about your audience
  • API access
  • industry trends
A print screen from Brandwatch showing collected mentions and analytics
Brandwatch old interface. It has changed and is definitely more user-friendly now.

Besides that, Brandwatch also offers a data visualization platform called Vizia. Vizia helps you visualize the real-time data, and turn complex information into easily understandable insights. Brandwatch is much more than just a tool to collect mentions about your brand or competitors.

The web monitoring tool will give you ready to implement insights that could boost your business online presence, help you make more informed decisions, and, ultimately, increase your market share.

Pricing

But for all the insights and knowledge, you have to pay.

Brandwatch does not offer a free trial period, and there is no information about its pricing on the official website.

 One of the sources says Brandwatch starts at $1,000 per month for 10,000 mentions.

Here is an article about Brandwatch alternatives. If you don’t want to spend that much on a social listening tool, you may want to check it out.

3. Tweetdeck

Tweetdeck is a social listening software dedicated solely to Twitter. The tool collects and analyses social media mentions only from this social media platform.

Tweetdeck helps you manage your social media presence, especially if you have to manage many different social media profiles within one platform.

A shreenshot from TweetDeck showing its features

Tweetdeck shows you all the tweets and Twitter feed aggregated in one dashboard. You can get an instant overview of your news feed, private messages, and trending topics.

Tweetdeck is a great tool, but it doesn’t offer any advanced analytics, for example, social media reach or Twitter sentiment analysis.

If you want to focus your social media strategy solely on Twitter, Tweetdeck is your tool of choice.

Pricing

Tweetdeck is a free tool.

4. Tweetreach

Tweetreach is another social listening tool that will help you manage your Twitter presence and answer one very important question — how far did your tweets travel?

A screenshot showing TweetReach analytics

This social listening solution will help you discover important data about your social media account:

  • what is the best time to tweet?
  • what type of content gets the most engagement?
  • which hashtags should you be using?
  • who are your industry influencers?

Twitter assistant will also help you identify ways to improve your Twitter presence. Tweetreach is a great social media management tool for businesses focused on building Twitter presence.

Unfortunately, Tweetreach only works on Twitter.

Pricing

Tweetreach is a free tool, but also offers TweetReach Pro Twitter analytics that starts at $49 per month.

5. Buffer

No social listening solutions listicle will be complete without Buffer! Buffer is one of the best social media management tools on the market.

Buffer will help you manage your social media presence across different platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other social networks.

Buffer is a social media management platform. With the help of the tool, you can easily schedule social media posts and engage with your audience. It also offers one inbox for all your social media messages.

Buffer works with major social media networks, such as Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. It also offers an audience behavior unit that will help you create better targeted social media campaigns. The mentions are collected in real-time.

A screenshot from Buffer showing analytics

Pricing

Buffer starter plan costs $35 per month and offers a 2-weeks free trial.

6. Sprout Social

Sprout Social is another social media management tool with a social listening twist. The tool collects mentions of your brand across major social media platforms. It offers social media automation that will help you manage your online presence and get the social listening insights you need to boost your business.

Sprout Social is the tool of choice if you want to know more about your social media audience.

Sprout Social helps you manage your presence on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.

A print screen from Sprout Social showing its dashboard

Besides social listening, Sprout Social also offers social media management and publishing services. Because Sprout Social offers a wide range of features it is one of the best social media management platforms on the market.

Pricing

Sprout Social offers a 30-day free trial, which does not include Listening feature.

Its starter plan costs $99 per month.

Here is a post on Sprout Social alternatives, if you are interested in trying different solutions.

7. Keyhole

Keyhole is social listening and social media management tool that offers both social listening features and social media management.

Keyhole lets you track the performance of your accounts through various social media channels and provides the data necessary for making informed decisions. The tools collects mentions in real-time.

The social listening tool also offers social media analytics, letting you take a closer look at sentiment analysis, keyword clouds, and geographical data of your mentions. These features let you know more about your audience which results in better marketing campaigns.

A screenshot from Keyhole showing collected mentions

One of the strong features of Keyhole is hashtag tracking. You can track the performance of your hashtags across different social media channels. The data can be used to measure the results of your social media campaigns.

Pricing

Keyhole’s social listening plan starts at $199 per month and offers a free trial.

8. Hootsuite

Hootsuite advertises as a social media monitoring tool and it lets you zero in on trends, topics, and social media profiles. That way, you can easily see what is going when it comes to your industry niche and get to know your audience better.

Hootsuite Insights cooperates with another social listening solution — Brandwatch. Once you subscribe to Hootsuite, you’ll be able to access audience insights that will help you make more informed decisions. Hoootsuite Insights collects mentions in real-time.

A screenshot from Hootsuite showing its dashboard

Hootsuite insights platform allows you to:

  • use a powerful set of filters (date, demographics, location)
  • identify industry leaders
  • discover sentiment around your brand
  • get instant notifications once a keyword is used online

Pricing

Hootsuite starts at $19 per month and offers a 30-day free trial.

9. BuzzSumo

BuzzSumo is a tool dedicated to improving your social media marketing.

The tool will discover top-performing mentions, find influencers to promote your social media channels and monitor your predefined keywords. If social media marketing is important for your brand, take a closer look at BuzzSumo.

We’re interested in the last component.

You can create alerts and get notifications once a keyword that matters is used online.

A screenshot from Buzzsumo showing collected mentions

But BuzzSumo is mainly a social media intelligence app. One of its strongest features is the assessment of shared content. That way, you can see what type of content performs best and make sure you provide content tailored to your audience needs.

Pricing

BuzzSumo starts at $99 per month and offers a 30-day free trial.

10. HubSpot

HubSpot is a go-to platform when it comes to social media management. The main aim of the HubSpot interface is to find the optimal way to grow your business using social media.

Part of the growth hacking is social listening.

HubSpot lets you write and share new posts, respond to comments straight from the social listening tool. One of the strongest features of HubSpot is the ability to nurture leads. If your main aim is to grow your client base through social media, HubSpot offers some interesting solutions.

Pricing

Hubspot’s social listening starts at $50 per month.

7 social listening case studies

After we learned some facts and teoterical knowledge about social listening, we read about its definition, benefits and purposes, we can now dive into the next part of this article, where we will learn how popular companies use social listenig for their growth.

If you are interested in reading 7 best social listening case studies, keep going.

Virgin Trains helped a passenger in need and proved their customer service is spot-on!

One of the best examples of how social listening can improve online customer service has to be this one from Virgin Trains:

A passenger was on a train headed to Glasgow from Euston when he got up to use the restroom. Just minutes later, he found himself in an urgent situation — he’d run out of toilet paper just when he needed it most (!). What would you do if that were you?

This passenger decided to tweet about it, unabashedly informing the company about his dilemma.

Virgin Trains quickly tweeted back, promptly taking care of the issue both online and onboard.

An ultimate guide to social listening — examples of customer service via Twitter from Virgin Trains

Brayola listens to online conversations about uncomfortable bras to connect with potential clients

Naturally, there are many more examples of brands reaching out to potential leads on the Internet. For instance, Brayola uses social listening to help prospective customers find their ideal bras.

How? By listening to online conversations about uncomfortable bras.

An ultimate guide to social listening — Influence of social media authors in Brand24

Start social listening! Try it for free

Then Brayola consultants join the discussion and offer their assistance in customizing the perfect bras while promoting the brand and their products to the audience.

An ultimate guide to social listening — brayola tweets to proscpects

Somersby used social listening to measure the effectiveness of online campaign

Somersby, a leading brand of cider from Danish brewing company Carlsberg Group, is an excellent example of using social listening to support their marketing campaigns.

They’ve designed numerous hashtag campaigns that have successfully engaged fans, and amplifying their success by building strong relationships with bloggers and influencers.

For instance, when they introduced a new variety of Somersby to the Polish market, they worked with dozens of bloggers and encouraged people to share content (especially photos) with a dedicated hashtag.

An ultimate guide to social listenings — sentiment structure somersby blackberry campaign

They used social listening to track this campaign and check the sentiment towards the brand. Thanks to this method, they were able to see that the campaign not only improved the overall brand sentiment towards Somersby, it also gained tremendous social media reach. Beyond that, the new beverage became a bestselling beer in its category and the brand executed what became an annual sales plan in just 4 months.

Check out another social media listening case study: Somersby Social Engagement Case Study

PlayStation increases audience engagement with social listening

Take a cue from PlayStation’s social media monitoring strategy and see how they join online discussions to increase audience engagement and increase brand loyalty.

PlayStation uses social listening to find conversations that are related to gaming, gamers and the brand itself. Then they invent creative and funny responses to engage their audience and encourage gamers to play on the PS console.

An ultimate guide to social listening — Interact with users PlayStation
An ultimate guide to social listening— Interact with users: Sony PlayStation driving engagement

GoPro used online suggestions to improve their camera and satisfy customers

Customer insights shared on the Internet are often seen as being more reliable than those from other sources, because they’re considered to be more honest and genuine — even if they’re negative.

That’s why it’s important to listen to your audience. Your users and clients can (and probably do) give you valuable advice on how to improve your products and services. After all, they are the ones using them, so they know best about what would make them even more appealing.

Smart brands leverage these product insights and implement them in their product development processes, which is what GoPro did when they came out with their new camera — GoPro Hero4.

We analyzed the online discussions regarding both releases: Hero3+ and Hero4.

The user insights gathered during the Hero3+ premiere included lots of suggestions for features that could improve the user experience, which then appeared in the next model — GoPro Hero4.

Taco Bell also admitted that their customers inspire them on how to improve their offer and what changes they can make to improve their customers’ satisfaction.

An ultimate guide to social listening — an example of customer insight for Taco Bell

Zortrax finds influential profiles through social listening and converts them into loyal brand ambassadors

Zortrax, a Polish producer of professional 3D printing solutions, values the relationships that they have built with their clients — including satisfied customers who publish content about their brand.

The company finds influential profiles through social listening and converts them into loyal brand ambassadors. They also have an eager group of “activists” who evangelize and educate the online community, e.g., on how to use 3D printers. This is extremely important, as loyal customers can provide your brand with the type of authentic promotion that no paid advertisement can give you.

An ultimate guide to social listening - a screenshot showing Zortrax camapign with influencer
An ultimate guide to social listening - a screenshot showing Zortrax camapign with influencer

Social listening and social media monitoring in a nutshell

We’ve covered a lot today, so let’s review!

Social listening is about awareness, and awareness is the key difference between strategies that succeed vs strategies that fail.

Social media monitoring and listening should be an integral part of your business strategy. The process will help you identify the crucial online mentions that will help you improve your product, service, or brand.

Moreover, social listening is a versatile process. Many different departments can use the insights gathered during the process. Dedicated tools make social listening a piece of cake. Ready to try it?

Get the data you need from your social media monitoring tool and apply your critical social listening skills to gain full awareness of the effectiveness of your strategies. It’s the most efficient way to find out what works and what doesn’t, which is exactly what companies need to succeed in today’s fiercely competitive conditions.

I hope we helped you find out which of the best social listening tools is the perfect match for you!

If you want to know more about social listening, take a look at our social listening course! During this free course, you will learn the ins and outs of social listening!