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Social Media Listening and Responding: Tips and Formulas to Remember



Monitoring your business's social media presence is incredibly important. You need to respond to people talking about your brand and understand how people view your company. Social media isn’t this magical fairy dust that makes business leads come rushing in for your company. It’s hard work! It requires time and effort, often across multiple departments and amongst multiple employees.


In order to respond to people talking about your brand on social media, you first need to know how to listen.


When reaching out and responding, you may find the number of mentions overwhelming. You’ve allotted a certain amount of time a day, which means you can’t respond to everyone, so who do you choose? The trick is to find the influencers -- folks who have the greatest potential reach and audience -- because their engagement is going to make the greatest ripples. You can determine who is an influencer by looking at the number of followers they have, the amount that they tweet, their Klout score (which rates them based on a number of social factors), and whether they’re a lead, customer, or opportunity.


Sometimes you won’t be able to determine if a person’s an influencer or not, and that’s okay. As you go through and monitor conversations on social media, you’ll notice that some messages require that you simply listen and reflect, while other times you’ll need to respond ... and fast! Responding (or not) to these varied scenarios will depend on who the person is, what they said, and what time they said it. The rule here tends to be simply “use good judgment,” but this rule is not always self explanatory or might require a gut check from someone else on your team.


When responding, make sure you:

  • Respond promptly and accurately.

  • Show gratitude and respect. Never respond in an offensive or defensive way.

  • Include facts instead of opinions and link to factual reference materials to support your case.

  • Respond in a tone/voice that reflects the company’s culture and values.

  • Let the person know how you’re connected to the company.


Then, to help you decide immediately whether you should listen or respond, use these formulas:


Positive + False = Respond

Positive + True = Listen or Respond

Negative + Troll = Listen

Negative + Not a Troll + Rant/Joke = Listen

Negative + Not a Troll + Not a Rant/Joke + Erroneous Information = Respond

Negative + Not a Troll + Not a Rant/Joke + Not Erroneous Information + Unhappy = Respond

Negative + Not a Troll + Not a Rant/Joke + Not Erroneous Information + Not Unhappy = Listen



For more on how to listen and respond on social media, you can download our FREE ebook, How to Monitor Social Media in 10 Minutes a Day!

Get Your Free Social Media Monitoring Ebook


 Do your marketing strategies feel like they're a bit behind the times? Learn why your marketing strategies need to evolve with time in this blog.




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