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Market Research 101: What Is Social Listening?

Brand health is tricky these days, and TrendSource has developed a suite of products to help businesses keep real-time tabs on the things people are saying about them. Over the next three weeks, we will be presenting these brand health products as part of our Market Research 101 series, telling you everything you need to know about the cutting edge of online market research.

Today, we will be presenting Social Listening, a market research methodology that sounds nefarious (like Big Brother!) but is actually quite common and increasingly necessary in today’s online world. As with most things Market Research, it’s important to remember: it’s not spying, it’s just good business!

What is Social Listening Market Research?

Social Listening is an online market research tool and methodology that allows companies to tap into the real-time thoughts consumers are sharing through social media. Part of any viable brand health suite of products, social listening tools accumulate, collate, and analyze the vast streams of online sociability.

What is Social Listening Used For?

Nowadays, companies can be made and broken by social media, which has democratized product reviews, putting taste-making power, for better or worse, directly into the hands of consumers, potential consumers, and plain old trolls. Your greatest supporter, your biggest detractor, and everybody in-between can all take to Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, all the other social media spaces the kids are building these days to voice their opinions and influence their followers.

online social listening frustrated man phone

Social listening tracks these conversations and, through machine learning, organizes and analyzes them into digestible information and actionable insights. With daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and yearly reporting and a real-time dashboard, businesses can rest assured they are ahead of the conversation through online social listening market research.

Who Uses Social Listening Market Research?

Any B-to-C (business to customer) business stands to benefit from social listening—that means if your company has customers, you should be listening to what they’re saying about your products, services, brand promise, and overall performance.

Businesses who need to keep their brand healthy with social listening include:

Consumers are talking about your company right now—don’t you want to know what they’re saying?

What Types of Things Can Social Listening Tell You?

With a comprehensive data capture and penetrating analytics, TrendSource social listening can help businesses understand: 

  • How various generations, ethnicities, regions, and other demographic segmentations view and discuss your brands
  • Which products and services hit the mark, which fall short, and how to emphasize the good and mitigate the bad
  • To what extent your current social media strategy resonates with different demographic segmentations and how you can optimize it
  • Which social media channels are the friendliest and most hostile to your brand
  • How conversations about your business change over time
  • Much, much more.

How TrendSource does Social Listening

TrendSource deploys machine learning and data science to separate the social media signal from the online noise. It’s not just about listening, of course, it’s about analyzing and TrendSource’s deep analytics, reporting sites, and dashboards produce instant actionable insights.

The prevailing online winds can shift in an instant; TrendSource’s online social listening program keeps them at your back.

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