Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Social Media Listening Tools: How to Listen Right Now + 17 Top Tools

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With the right social media listening tool, you can tune into conversations that matter to your brand. From customer comments to industry trends to news articles about your brand, you can efficiently analyze and glean insights.

So, how can you use social listening today, and which tools have the features and capabilities you need? In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to gather and review social media intelligence today—including 17 top tools.

What Is Social Listening?

Social listening is the process of collecting, analyzing, and engaging with digital content that mentions specific brand names, keywords, or hashtags. Using automated searches, you can listen for terms that matter to your brand. Then you can assess the sentiment, join the conversation, and use the data to inform your social media marketing strategy.

It’s helpful for analyzing:

  • Your own brand, including mentions from customers, prospects, influencers, and media outlets
  • The competition, including how happy or upset customers speak about the brand
  • Keywords and hashtags related to your brand so you can monitor trends and sentiment

For example, a social listening search may show you that your competitor’s brand is trending in a negative way on X (formerly Twitter). With the right tool, you can monitor popular posts and gauge the sentiment behind them.

Then you can decide on the best way for your brand to respond. Depending on the situation, you may opt to create social media content that references the issue. Or, you can use it as a way to differentiate your brand during sales calls.

While it’s a type of social media intelligence, it can go beyond social media channels alone. In fact, many social listening tools also cover review sites, news sites, and blogs to offer more complete brand or reputation management.

Marketers, communication professionals, and public relations (PR) teams often use social listening tools to track and analyze brand mentions. Yet these tools are also helpful for sales and customer success teams. When they know what users are saying about your brand, products, and services, then can craft better responses or pitches.

How can your brand benefit from social listening?

With social listening, you can discover what customers are really saying about your brand online and how they actually feel. You can also gauge how people view the competition and monitor trends related to your brand.

Sezgin Hergül, Senior Product Marketing Manager at Agorapulse, explains what brands can gain from social listening:

“Businesses want to understand how their brands are perceived on social and what their market, competitors, and customers are talking about. They want to ensure they can have actionable insights and learnings to inform their content strategy with the end goal of measuring and protecting their brand health, creating better customer experiences, and staying ahead of their competitors.”

With social listening, you can achieve goals like:

  • Managing your brand’s reputation: Engage with positive reviews and handle complaints before they become a serious problem or a full-blown crisis.
  • Measuring customer sentiment: Get a read on current feelings about your brand and learn how this metric changes over time—including what affects it most.
  • Sourcing testimonials and social proof: Identify positive comments, messages, and reviews to repurpose on your website and social channels.
  • Keeping an eye on the competition: Monitor how people feel about other brands in your space so you can fill messaging gaps or take advantage of opportunities.

Sign up now for a free trial of Agorapulse and get listening right away.

What’s the difference between social monitoring vs social listening?

Social media monitoring and social media listening share several similarities. Both processes track mentions of brands, keywords, and hashtags online. Here’s where they differ:

  • Social monitoring mainly focuses on reacting to mentions. It’s more about providing a quick response.
  • Social listening focuses more on gathering insights. It’s more about analyzing data and informing strategy.

Can your strategy include both? Absolutely.

Think of social monitoring as a short-term solution for engaging with customers and prospects. Then consider social listening a long-term solution for managing your brand’s reputation and finding competitive opportunities.

How to Leverage Social Listening Today

So, how can you put social listening to work for your company or clients? Let’s look at how Agorapulse’s social listening tool can provide valuable insights.

1. Assess brand health

Want to know how customers, prospects, and influencers perceive your brand on social media? Looking to monitor how sentiment evolves over time and share findings with stakeholders?

With Agorapulse, you can create listening searches that include mentions, brand names, branded hashtags, and keywords related to your brand. With a single search, you can find and analyze relevant conversations across Facebook, Instagram, X, blogs and news sources

Agorapulse's social media listening tool showing a brand health search

From the listening dashboard, you can spot patterns using the search volume and engagement trends charts. The dashboard also displays all the posts from the listening search, so you can identify the source of the buzz.

Agorapulse social listening charts for a branded searchAgorapulse social listening charts for a branded search

Example of a branded search with Agorapulse

So, how do people feel about your brand? Agorapulse automatically analyzes the sentiment behind each post in your social listening search. It then provides an overview and displays the breakdown among positive, neutral, and negative sentiment.

For example, this brand generates mostly positive sentiment, which indicates good brand health:

Agorapulse sentiment analysis overviewAgorapulse sentiment analysis overview

Create a sentiment analysis with Agorapulse

2. Improve customer experiences

Want to respond to customer comments and questions more efficiently? Need to improve customer satisfaction so you can develop a happier customer base?

With Agorapulse’s social inbox, you can easily track and reply to direct messages (DMs) and comments on your social media content. But what about when people mention your brand in their own content or comments on others’ posts?

When you add Agorapulse’s social listening tool to the mix, you can monitor public mentions, too. In other words, you can find and respond to user-generated content (UGC) featuring your brand or to comments mentioning your company. You won’t have to worry about missing a mention or an opportunity to connect with customers.

Agorapulse’s listening dashboard displays a complete list of mentions that fit your search parameters. You can click to engage with any of them directly on Facebook, Instagram, or X.

You can also view the sentiment behind each eligible post in your social listening search. With these insights, you can optimize customer experiences and team workflows.

Agorapulse sentiment analysis per postAgorapulse sentiment analysis per post

Agorapulse’s sentiment analysis per social media post

3. Gain competitive advantage

Curious how your competitors are using social media? Want to use their content for inspiration?

With Agorapulse’s social listening tool, you aren’t limited to searching for your branded hashtags only. Instead, you can also create searches to monitor competitors’ hashtags and keywords (ie, brand, product, or service names).

Agorapulse's social media listening tool showing a competitor searchAgorapulse's social media listening tool showing a competitor search

Similar to the workflow above, you can measure both search volume and engagement trends for competitor topics. You can also sort results by social network to find which channels are driving the best results for other brands in your space.

Agorapulse social listening charts for a competitive searchAgorapulse social listening charts for a competitive search

Example of a competitive search

With these insights, Sezgin explains, you can “uncover what people say about competitors and how engaging the content is—and find opportunities to generate good content for your brand.”

Need an easy way to stay on top of industry trends? Want to make sure your brand is responding to current events?

Agorapulse’s social listening tool can also monitor broader hashtags and keywords that apply to your industry. Soon, you’ll also be able to use Agorapulse’s web search tools to track industry keywords from news articles and blog posts.

Using the volume and engagement dashboards and the content feed, you can stay on top of what’s happening in your industry across social media and beyond. Then you can let these insights guide your content strategy and keep it relevant.

get a free demo of agorapulseget a free demo of agorapulse

Which platform best meets your team’s needs? As you weigh options, consider the networks they support, the insights they provide, and the other capabilities they offer—such as social media management.

1. Agorapulse

As a complete social media management solution, Agorapulse has an advanced listening tool—and much more. With Agorapulse, you can listen for mentions of your brand, competitors, keywords, and hashtags on social and web pages.

With Agorapulse’s search volume and engagement trends, you can develop data-driven responses and build more impactful social media strategies. Unbcover positive, negative, and neutral sentiments and include those findings in your reports.

One of the biggest perks of Agorapulse is that it can handle every other element of social media management, too. From AI-powered content creation and social media scheduling to engagement and reporting, Agorapulse can do it all.

Need to onboard your team or collaborate with clients? Agorapulse has the approved workflows, shared calendars, and customized reports you need to manage social media marketing successfully. Even with all these features, we’ve designed Agorapulse to be affordable for growing teams.

Pricing: Starts at $99 per user per month

2. Awario

Awario social listeningAwario social listening

Awario is a brand management platform that tracks conversations on social media and beyond. This tool allows you to monitor brand mentions on social media platforms, forums (ie, Reddit), blogs, and news sites.

With Awario, you can provide customer service, identify sales opportunities, and connect with influencers. You can also use its sentiment analysis tool to gauge positive and negative responses.

Pricing: Starts at $49 per user per month

3. Brand24

Brand24 social listeningBrand24 social listening

As a tool for monitoring brand reputation Brand24 tracks mentions across social media networks as well as news sites, blogs, forums, and review sites. This AI-powered tool also works with podcasts and videos.

With Brand24, you can measure brand awareness, benchmark your brand against competitors, and assess the sentiment behind mentions. Premium plans include advanced AI features for deeper insights into your brand monitoring searches.

Pricing: Starts at $99 per user per month

4. BrandMentions

BrandMentions social listeningBrandMentions social listening

BrandMentions is a reputation management and social media monitoring tool. It can monitor mentions across social media and customer reviews on dedicated review sites to help you find and respond to customer issues efficiently.

In addition to tracking volume over time, BrandMentions also provides sentiment and trend analysis. To ensure you never miss a positive or negative trend, you can opt in to real-time alerts for your brand.

Pricing: Starts at $99 per month

5. Brandwatch

Brandwatch social listeningBrandwatch social listening

Brandwatch offers social media publishing, consumer intelligence, and influencer marketing. As a tool for both social media management and intelligence, it can monitor brands and keywords and help you create data-driven content.

With Brandwatch’s social listening tools, you can find what your customers are talking about at the moment and gauge how they feel about it. You can also get alerts for unusual trends so you can head off crises before they happen.

Pricing: Contact sales for a custom quote.

6. Hootsuite

Hootsuite social listeningHootsuite social listening

Hootsuite is a social media management tool teams can use to create social media posts, schedule content, respond to engagement, and report on outcomes. Its social listening tool is available as an add-on for enterprise customers.

With Hootsuite Insights, you can stay on top of industry trends, monitor competitors, and use consumer research to level up your social media strategy. This tool tracks sentiment and volume over time so you can find and respond to trends.

Pricing: Available as an add-on for Enterprise plans; contact sales for a custom quote

7. Keyhole

Keyhole social listeningKeyhole social listening

Keyhole is a social intelligence tool that offers social listening, publishing and scheduling, and influencer tracking. It also offers social analytics to help you manage audience growth and review top social post performance.

With Keyhole’s social listening platform, you can monitor mentions, track virality, and use AI-powered sentiment analysis to get a read on the situation quickly. This tool also uses listening data to provide automated publishing recommendations.

Pricing: Starts at $89 per user per month

8. Meltwater

Meltwater social listeningMeltwater social listening

 

Meltwater is a complete social media management platform designed for enterprise users. It has a suite of tools for social listening, consumer intelligence, media intelligence, sales intelligence, and influencer marketing.

With Meltwater’s listening tools, you can monitor social mentions, analyze your audience, and be the first to know before a crisis. Since Meltwater also provides historical data, it can give you a more complete picture of your brand’s health over time.

Pricing: Contact sales for a custom quote

9. Mention

Social listening mentionSocial listening mention

 

Mention is a dedicated tool for monitoring social media mentions across platforms. Since it also monitors forums, news sites, and review sites, it can compile cross-channel data and help you make sense of trends.

With Mention’s listening tools, you can tune in to countless conversations about your brand or the competition and read the room quickly. You can also compare trends, measure the impact on different social networks, and share reports with your team.

Pricing: Starts at $49 per user month

10. Mentionlytics

Mentioned social listeningMentioned social listening

As one of the most comprehensive monitoring tools, Mentionlytics can track mentions of your brand, products, or competitors virtually anywhere across the web. This platform supports all major social networks plus forums, blogs, and news sites.

With Mentionlytics’ reports, you can monitor brand awareness, sentiment analysis, and share of voice. Then you can use this social listening data to guide your content creation and customer engagement strategy.

Pricing: Starts at $69 per month

11. Oktopost

Oktopost social listeningOktopost social listening

As a social media management platform, Oktopost offers listening as well as publishing, and analytics. Its AI-powered social listening tools track and analyze conversations almost anywhere online—including 75+ million websites.

With Oktopost’s social listening analytics, you can understand when and why customer perception of your brand chances and how you can impact it successfully. The platform is also helpful for finding influencers, monitoring brand reputation, and analyzing competitors.

Pricing: Contact sales for a custom quote

12. Onclusive

Onclusive social listeningOnclusive social listening

A media monitoring and social listening platform, Onclusive tracks 25+ social media networks and 850+ million online sources. It also offers historical data, making it one of the most comprehensive social listening platforms.

With Onclusive, you can use sentiment analysis to create relevant content and take steps to improve this metric over time. You can also get alerts about negative activity in real time so you can stop potential crises before they get out of control.

Pricing: Contact sales for a custom quote

13. Pulsar

Pulsar social listeningPulsar social listening

Pulsar is an audience intelligence platform designed to help you craft a customer-centric media strategy. Its audience segmentation tools allow for deeper insights into your community, and its AI-powered tools help you understand topics quickly.

With Pulsar, you can see how audiences across various social networks engage with relevant topics so you can find the best place to invest your team’s energy—and the right tactics to use for growth.

Pricing: Contact sales for a custom quote

Grab your free Agorapulse trial right now!

14. Reputation

Social listening reputationSocial listening reputation

Reputation is a suite of social listening, publishing, and analytics tools. It offers real-time mention alerts, sentiment analysis reports, and competitive data to help you stay ahead of the curve.

With Reputation, you can monitor the keywords that matter to your brand (including competitors) and identify trends easily. You can also plan campaign content and respond to social media conversations from a dedicated platform.

Pricing: Contact sales for a custom quote.

15. Sprinklr

Sprinklr social listeningSprinklr social listening

Designed for enterprise users, Sprinklr is an all-in-one customer experience management platform. It handles customer support, social media management, content marketing, and social listening.

With Sprinklr’s social listening tools, you can analyze mentions and keywords across channels to understand how your audience feels about your brand or products. The platform tracks volume, share of voice, and sentiment to give your team the insights you need.

Pricing: Contact sales for a custom quote

16. Sprout Social

Sprout Social social listeningSprout Social social listening

Sprout Social is a social media marketing tool that offers publishing, engagement, and analytics. It provides social listening as a premium add-on to its base social media plans.

With Sprout Social’s social listening feature, you can use templates to build comprehensive searches. Then you can use AI-powered tools to review customer feedback, analyze campaigns, spot influencers, and keep an eye on the competition.

Pricing: $299 per topic; available as an add-on to social media management plans, which start at $249 per month

17. Talkwalker

Talkwalker social listeningTalkwalker social listening

Talkwalker is a social and consumer data platform. It offers powerful social listening, media monitoring, and social benchmarking tools. It’s designed to help you build better marketing strategies, stronger customer relationships, and connections with influencers.

With Talkwalker, you can find your brand’s biggest fans and learn how they feel about your products. You can also get AI-powered summaries of trends and gain actionable insights you can put to work in your social strategy.

Pricing: Contact sales for a custom quote

Social listening is essential for monitoring brand health, creating better customer experiences, keeping an eye on the competition, and much more. With the right tool, you can listen and analyze automatically, gaining critical insights to enhance your social media strategy.

Curious how Agorapulse’s social media listening tool can help your team collaborate more efficiently? Sign up for a free 30-day trial (no credit card required) and see for yourself today.

Social Media Listening Tools: How to Listen Right Now + 17 Top ToolsSocial Media Listening Tools: How to Listen Right Now + 17 Top Tools

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