Social media monitoring can benefit a brand by expanding exposure, responding to customer issues and opportunities, managing reputations, tracking trends and even getting product and service ideas.
With many monitoring tools on the market, how do we evaluate what’s the most effective to realize those benefits?
These tools are evaluated based on these features:
1. Coverage — the types of media or geographic markets. There was an 11 times difference between the tools that reported the least and most conversations in the evaluation.
2. Sentiment analysis — tools have not nailed sentiment analysis yet. They can be valuable but it's important to understand their limitations to understand their capabilities.
3. Location of conversations — tools classify the location of conversations in different ways to determine the location of conversations. For example, it can be hard to determine if Portuguese tweets were originated from Brazil or Portugal.
4. Volume of conversation — should re-tweets, spam, signatures or adverts be counted in your study or not? Different tools treat them in different ways and so the actual number of conversations is not always as it seems.
5. Data latency — the speed at which conversations are collected by a tool is limited by the frequency of their web crawlers and the length of time it takes the tool to process the data. So, alert functions can be less useful.
Tools also were evaluated tools against other functions:
1. Ease of set up — how easy was it to use the query builder or wizard and do the queries fail and do they save easily?
2. User friendliness — how easy is the interface to use and simple to navigate?
3. Responsiveness — how easy and how quickly do the tools respond to changes?
4. Ability to extract raw data — how easy and quick the tool is to extract data?
5. Sentiment accuracy — what is the comparison of automated to manual sentiment?
6. Finding our key topic — how prevalent was the issue and how easy was the tool to use as an analyst looking for more information?
I value this white paper because it shows the range of features which will be relevant to a brand’s goals, strategies, execution and culture. It's also beneficial as it monitors a pervasive brand like Starbucks' product introductions and marketplace issues.
When you evaluate them, you will benefit from a system of key performance indicators. I appreciate this social media measurement checklist from measurement expert Katie Paine.
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