Social Media Success in 14 Steps: #3 Active Listening

A critical step in preparing to launch a social media campaign is listening to your market. What are they saying about your company, your competitors and the issues you care about? To get a pulse of the market, you can subscribe to groups on LinkedIn or Facebook, and set up Google reader to get a constant stream of what the market is talking about.

I’ve been a Google Reader fan and advocate for quite some time now here at Nowspeed. Google Reader is more than just an information aggregator – it’s a great way to keep tabs on my company, competitors, clients in the news, the blogosphere, and on Twitter and helps me stay up-to-date on marketing news.  Here’s how I use my Google Reader account:

First I subscribe to important keywords in Google News, Blogs, and Twitter.  I can monitor my favorite branded keywords across key sites to see if people are talking about them and what they’re saying. This information helps me to better understand the market and how people feel about my company and my competitors.

Another way to use Google reader is to subscribe to industry leading blogs and Twitter accounts. To stay on top of my clients’ industry and the marketing industry, I follow industry leader’s blogs and Twitter accounts. It’s a quick and easy way to find out any new trends or interesting findings, without requiring much research.

Setting up Google Reader can take some time, so I follow my coworkers and friends Google Reader accounts and read their subscriptions. I’ll often find new topics of interest and new industry leaders this way.

If you’d like to read my white paper on Social Media Success in 14 Steps, please click here.

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