Social media measurement or ‘social media monitoring’ is an active monitoring of social media channels for information about a company or organization, usually tracking of various social media content such as blogs, wikis, news sites, micro-blogs such as Twitter, social networking sites, video/photo sharing websites, forums, message boards, blogs and user-generated content in general as a way to determine the volume and sentiment of online conversation about a brand or topic.
Social media monitoring allow users to find insights into a brands’ overall visibility on social media, measure the impact of campaigns, identify opportunities for engagement, assess competitor activity and share of voice, and be alerted to impending crises. It can also provide valuable information about emerging trends and what consumers and clients think about specific topics, brands or products. This is the work of cross section of people including market researchers, PR staff, marketing teams, social engagement and community staff, agencies and sales teams. Several different providers have created tools to facilitate the monitoring of a variety of social media channels from blogging to internet video to internet forums. This allows companies to track what consumers are saying about their brands and actions. Companies can then react to these conversations and interact with consumers through social media platforms.
There are a wide range of monitoring platforms available, from entry-level free tools to much more powerful enterprise tools, each of which provides different functionality and methods to find, manipulate and work with the relevant data. Some tools are geared more towards engagement, offering solutions to track and respond to mentions of a brand, whilst others are more data-focused, though most tools offer, to varying degrees, a combination of both.
Some of the free social media monitoring tools
HootSuite is a social media management system for businesses and organizations to collaboratively execute campaigns across multiple social networks from one secure, web-based dashboard. Launch marketing campaigns, identify and grow audiences, and distribute targeted messages using HootSuite’s unique social media dashboard. Streamline team workflow with scheduling and assignment tools and reach audiences with geo-targeting functionality. Invite multiple collaborators to manage social profiles securely, plus provide custom reports using the comprehensive social analytics tools for measurement. Key social network integrations include Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and new Google+ Pages, plus a suite of social content apps for YouTube, Flickr, Tumblr and more.
Social Mention is a social media search and analysis platform that aggregates user generated content from across the universe into a single stream of information. It allows you to easily track and measure what people are saying about you, your company, a new product, or any topic across the web’s social media landscape in real-time. Social Mention monitors 100+ social media properties directly including: Twitter, Facebook, FriendFeed, YouTube, Digg, Google etc. Social Mention currently provides a point-in-time social media search and analysis service, daily social media alerts, and API.
Twitter Counter started as a self funded startup based in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Today with +550,000 monthly visits and 2,1 million page views it has grown in to the number 1 stats site for Twitter users. Twitter Counter became profitable within the first 6 months after launch and has been growing phenomenally ever since. Twitter Counter provides statistics of Twitter usage and tracks over 24 million users and counting. Next to that it offers Pro Twitter Stats for even more powerful statistics and sells featured spots on its website to people who want to gain more followers. Twitter Counter also offers a variety of widgets and buttons that people can add to their blogs, websites or social network profiles to show recent Twitter visitors and number of followers. Every day it generates more than 4 million of those widgets on thousands of websites all over the web.
Wildfire, a division of Google, is one of the world’s largest social media marketing software providers, with over 21,000 paying customers worldwide, including 30 of the world’s 50 most valuable brands. Wildfire’s Social Marketing Suite combines best-of-breed social promotion and advertising software, robust mobile and desktop page management, messaging and sophisticated real-time analytics in one complete platform. The combination of Wildfire’s technology with Google’s advertising solutions will help provide a more holistic way for brands to manage and optimize their marketing efforts and spend across all digital channels, including search, display, video, mobile, and social.
Klout began with a very simple idea: Everyone has influence—the ability to drive action. Klout built on this idea to show anyone how he or she can influence the world and its future.Klout was founded in 2008 to empower everyone to unlock their influence. We come to work every day inspired to help people understand the power of their voices and democratize influence.
CoTweet’s social media technology is an integral part of ExactTarget’s Interactive Marketing Hub, a suite of cross-channel interactive marketing applications to help marketers plan, automate, deliver, and optimize their campaigns and conversations. CoTweet is how business gets social. A comprehensive web-based social media solution, CoTweet Enterprise helps companies of all sizes engage customers, manage conversations, and report results across leading social networks like Twitter and Facebook.
Facebook search is notoriously bad and will not find much, but if you have nothing else to do then give it a shot. It relies heavily on your social graph so the results you get may not be meaningful for your target audience.
Google Alerts are email updates of the latest relevant Google results (blogs, news, etc.) based on your searches. Enter the topic you wish to monitor, then click preview to see the type of results you’ll receive. Some handy uses of Google Alerts include: monitoring a developing news story and keeping current on a competitor or industry.
Google Blog Search
Whether you’re looking for Harry Potter reviews, political commentary, summer salad recipes or anything else, Blog Search enables you to find out what people are saying on any subject of your choice. Your results include all blogs. The blog index is continually updated, so you’ll always get the most accurate and up-to-date results.