7 Tools for Tracking Social Mentions

Nowadays, it’s not enough to just post (or schedule) social media updates. Setting things on auto-pilot is convenient but it just doesn’t cut it. Being active and engaged on different networks is one step forward but what about tracking your efforts? Here are 7 tools that can help you keep track of your business or a particular campaign you’re starting:

1) Fresh Web Explorer
2) social mention
3) Addict-o-matic
4) Topsy
5) PLANCAST
6) Icerocket
7) Netvibes

Why Track Mentions?
Organic and paid search campaigns can be tracked through various different metrics (rankings, CTR, conversions etc.) The important thing is to find a few that are relevant to your business and to keep track of them consistently so that you can see the progress made.

When it comes to social media marketing, there are many reasons to actively track your mentions. From a PR and reputation management standpoint, you want to better understand the connotation in which your brand is mentioned. How would a business feel or respond if they’ve been nominated by Consumerist’s annual Worst Company in America bracket?

Competitive analysis is another possibility when you track your own and other brand mentions. You can see where competitors are active and where they are getting the most attention from. This will help give you a better idea of where your strong points are and what weak areas you can work on.

Overall, the purpose of tracking social mentions is to gain a deeper understanding of your customers so that you can do a better job of attracting them. Seeing natural mentions, linking, shares and other comments will help you understand customer behavior and what they’re looking for when advocating a brand they love/hate.

Don’t Forget About Social Media!

With Google updates (or lack of updates, in Penguin’s case) getting all the attention this summer, it’s easy to slack on social media internet marketing efforts. This is the perfect time to garner some extra traffic and brand recognition that can help boost your SEO campaign… and just in time to prep for the holiday season. Let’s take a look some recent news to help refresh your outlook on this segment of online marketing:

Facebook Growth
According to a recent report, about 57% of Facebook users are active on mobile devices. Businesses can look forward to more ways to integrate ads and apps directly into users’ Newsfeed.

If you haven’t noticed already, Timeline has rolled out onto user accounts and Pages have followed, even on mobile. While there are still some people who resist, the positive outcome of this is that businesses have been “forced” to become more social by updating more frequently and filling out different sections of their Pages.

And don’t forget about measurement of your success. If you’re looking for more efficient ways to analyze your social media accounts, give Minilytics a try. This free tool gives suggestions about your brand reach, the best time to post and more.

Google Plus Gets More User Friendly?
When Google Plus first launched, Facebook fans argued that this network wasn’t as user friendly as their beloved Facebook. A prime example was that custom/vanity URLs were not available. This isn’t helpful for users or SEO friendly. Recently, this feature has been available to big brands and celebrities (like Taylor Swift). According to Google, this feature is free for now but that could change in the near future. Be on the look out to see if this feature rolls out to your page.

Concerned about your reputation? This post on the YOUmoz user blog shows an example of why you should be. Negative or positive reviews are more likely to be viewed at the top of your page if it’s left by a “verified Google Plus user”, even if it’s written by a disgruntled former employee. The key here isn’t to be afraid but to be aware of how to monitor brand mentions and combat that with positive reviews and other content.

Let us know if you’ve heard any interesting social media news lately and what your next course of action is!

The Power of Social Media in the 2012 Summer Olympics

Last night’s Summer Olympics closing ceremony was a wonderful way to close out the historic sporting events. The United States had the most wins with a total of 104 medals – while China and Great Britain were close behind.

Throughout the games and even throughout the closing ceremony, it was hard to escape the power of social media. Let’s take a look at some ways this is changing the way the games are presented and watched nowadays:

Consumption – There’s no doubt about it, fans and athletes alike love social media. It’s estimated that there were over 50 million tweets related to the Olympics. Rabid Ryan Lochte fans celebrated with the signature #JEAH hashtag, while gymnast Gabby Douglas gained over half a million new Twitter followers in just under 2 weeks. This year’s games were unlike any other because social media really has provided a channel for fans all over the world to be more connected to each other and their favorite athletes. Wonder if ancient Greek athletes could ever imagine something like this!

Criticism – NBC was continuously bashed throughout the Olympics for their lackluster coverage of events. Check out the #NBCfail hashtag to see a sample of what fans are saying. Early on, Twitter suspended (and quickly unsuspended) the account of a journalist that tweeted the “private” email address of a network executive and urged fans to email him. Fans have proven to be extremely vocal and big networks can now instantaneously see what consumers are criticizing them for.

Consequences – A Greek and Swiss athlete were suspended from their respective teams for racist tweets. Imagine all the hard work and not being able to participate because of a tasteless remark. Of course, these remarks and “jokes” go against everything that the Olympic spirit stands for. The debate is whether athletes should be suspended for such behavior or if social media usage should be restricted/controlled in the first place. Racism and ignorance has and will always exist. But the immediacy of social media is changing how we see it because it makes that hatred more tangible and permanent.

The next Summer Olympics is set to be held in Rio de Janeiro in 2016. Until then social media consumption will only grow. Companies should to keep their eyes on what their next move is in order to effectively capitalize on all the potential. And athletes must think more carefully to what they broadcast to the world. The question is, what will they learn until then?