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Brand Monitoring Helps Brand Learn, Engage and Collaborate

The Huffington Post logo The Huffington Post 4/03/2016 Genia Stevens, MBA

More than 3.2 billion people use the internet. The number of internet users has more than tripled since the year 2000. An estimated 321 million people in the U.S. currently use the internet.

As of November 2015, the world's population is 7.2 billion. With almost half the world's population online, global brands see the opportunity to reach millions of potential customers. These internet users are reached easily online via social channels, where usage continues to climb.

Brands must be able to connect with potential consumers in a way that's engaging and meaningful. Using brand monitoring tools will help brands build relationships with consumers and manage their digital presence.

Brand monitoring is real-time discovery of conversations that can help brands learn, engage, help and collaborate. For brand monitoring tools to work, users should track keywords in real-time and provide an immediate reaction.

Social media has changed consumer expectations. Consumers were once loyal to brands because their parents bought the product. Today's digital-age consumer expects a very personal relationship with brands - and that relationship isn't always easy to establish.  

Matthieu Vaxelaire, CEO at Mention, says building those personal relationships isn't easy, but it's possible. Vaxelaire says a lot of people are concerned about the time commitment required for the social media engagement and customer interaction necessary to build relationships. "With today's technology, that part isn't as hard as knowing what to say and when, and how to maintain and deepen the relationships with your customers," he says.

Mick Griffin, Chief Revenue Officer at says:

I believe ­­monitoring is the key to connecting with consumers. It allows brands to surprise customers. If a consumer writes '@pepsi, I don't like your new flavor,' the consumer somewhat expects a response. He directed the conversation to Pepsi.

However, if a consumer writes 'Tired after a great workout' and Gatorade responds with 'Sounds like you deserve a Gatorade after such a workout. Stay Hydrated,' the consumer is surprised a brand is still interested in the little guy. This is something modern consumers really appreciate.

The future of brand monitoring, for me, isn't just brand monitoring, but consumer listening.

Brand monitoring has the potential for misuse and abuse. Vaxelaire says that even though brand monitoring is meant for research purposes - finding and analyzing information - a lot of brands use what they learn the wrong way.

"For example, on Twitter you see some companies tweeting sales pitches to anyone who tweets about a certain topic, or mentions a competitor. They're monitoring valuable information, but reacting in a way that's more hurtful than helpful to their brand, " says Vaxelaire.

There are more useful, respectful, tactful and effective ways to use brand monitoring. Gathering feedback about your products and services, driving innovation, recruiting top talent for your organization and providing better customer service are just a few examples of great ways to use brand monitoring.

"People often use social media to air complaints, but may never contact a company's customer support. Using [brand monitoring tools], businesses have a way to proactively handle issues or have conversations with customers," says Kate Harrington. Finding those people and helping them, in real-time, is a great first step to building long-term relationships.

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