According to different data from annual studies of social networks, more than 85% of Internet users between 16 and 65 years old use social networks (around 20 million people). Taking this into account, it is more than evident that the internet and, in particular, social media provides companies with information that was not accessible before. This information can be based on marketing trends, which according to strategy optimization specialist Aaron Rodriguez, can be essential to anticipate what consumers are really looking for.
Understanding this is very simple. Currently, many of the conversations of Internet users are recorded on the web in different channels (much of this information is publicly available). With the help of monitoring tools, it is possible to access this and track key data.
Social listening allows you to have a real-time view of consumer behavior, make market analyses, detect consumer trends, and all this without having to invest huge resources of time, effort, or investment. Through a tool like this, you can monitor trends in search of features that can help different departments and stakeholders to predict what customers want and develop new products.
“This trend analysis can help sales and marketing departments to predict sales, adjust budgets and optimize advertising strategies and marketing plans,” says Rodriguez.
Monitoring Google searches allows you to know who your customers are and what they are most interested in from a brand’s universe. A recent study by Rodriguez examined the predictive power of searched keywords, giving insight into how marketers can better measure, analyze and apply Big Data to their efforts.
Rodriguez explains, “For example, an automotive company in the United States analyzed online search trends in order to compare the volume of searches related to a car’s features in relation to a car’s brand. The results concluded that feature searches were notably more accurate in forecasting sales.”
On many occasions, there have been talks about tracking consumer conversations on the internet. As you may realize, these conversations yield information not only about the brand but also about consumer habits.
If you want this data to help you detect trends, the idea is to collect as much information as possible about consumers, to get a broad picture of your audience, their behavior, preferences, tastes, feelings. This analysis can be done based on the different touchpoints of the customer journey.
When a key concept has a high number of mentions, it can be an indicator. Demographic profile and geolocation: by gender, age, geolocation, interests. The volume of mentions: analysis of mentions trends compare by period, same period last year, etc.
There is also sentiment which can become an indicator of the sentiment generated or the way in which consumers express themselves on a concept/topic. Influencers help you to detect the people who are generating the most buzz around a concept or topic, as well as their network of influence.
“When we talk about analyzing the competition, we refer specifically to looking at the reaction of your audience to various actions, for example how users of the competition receive a new product, or how they refer to the features of their products, everything will depend in part on the parameters you want to measure,” asserts Rodriguez.
Rodriguez has given two best practices that should be followed. The first is to choose similar campaigns or precedent actions that competitors have previously implemented to compare the same KPIs, to detect commonalities.
Second, you should detect the products that are top of mind for your consumers and those that have the highest visibility at the point of sale. Identify the channels with the greatest impact, as well as the terms that generate the highest volume of mentions.
Indicators on the visibility of your campaigns such as reach, share of voice, generated engagement, channels, influencers, and media network involved, generated hashtags, as well as the content created by your audience or UGC, are revealing insights into consumer habits.
“Social listening tools allow you to perform a competitive analysis of the sector,” Rodriguez suggests. “Ranking lists make it easy to detect common themes for all competitors in a market.”
In conclusion, let’s assume that major brands in the beverage industry want to know what consumers are saying about sugar-laden beverages. Ranking tags allow you to group all the conversations that refer to a particular topic and in this way, it is not only possible to see the volume of mentions generated, and therefore its relevance, but also whether it is associated with a particular brand.