This is a guest post by Sameer Panjwani from DirectoryMaximizer.com.
Social media can give a very accurate view of what people think of your brand. How your brand is perceived is nothing more than the collective opinion of your target market.
That’s why it’s so important to constantly watch social media and what people are saying about you.
It’ll tell you everything you need to know about whether or not people like your brand and your products and how you’re doing in comparison to your competitors.
These are the 8 most common types of messages that consumers will project in the social sphere.
#1 – They Love Your Service
If you provide a product or service that people love, they’ll be very happy to share it in their social media platforms.
This is especially if you go above and beyond their expectations. For example, Zappos often gives customers free overnight delivery – Without advertising it. When customers receive their order overnight, they’re so surprised that they share their experience on social media.
#2 – They Hate Your Service
Likewise, if you disappoint a customer or antagonize a customer, they’ll gladly share that on social media as well.
One famous example is when an AOL rep refused to cancel a man’s subscription. The man recorded the call and posted it on the social web – Where it took off like wildfire.
#3 – Real Experiences
People will often share real experiences with their friends, often without judgment. For example, someone might say that they just saw a movie, or that they just ate at X restaurant or that they’re joining X coaching program.
They’ll share their authentic experiences, with or without judgment on the experience’s quality.
#4 – Recommendations
Friends will often help other friends out by recommending products or services. Your goal as a marketer should always be to try to get these recommendations. These recommendations are more powerful than any type of marketing you could do, because they carry the weight of friendship.
It’s one thing if a movie poster tells you a movie is the greatest film of the year. It’s another thing if your friend tells you that. That’s the power of recommendations and that can only happen if you’ve built enough social media trust.
#5 – Requests for Recommendations
Often time’s someone who’s looking to buy a product will ask their social network for recommendations. For example, someone might go on their Facebook status and ask “Does anyone know a good massage therapist?”
You want to position your brand so that when people ask, you’re the one who gets the referral.
#6 – Suggestions
Customers will often offer unsolicited suggestions. While some of these may be completely unrealistic, such as making your products free, many of them will actually be great ideas.
Companies often find that when they listen to customer suggestions, their customers can actually provide some of the best ideas for improving products and even marketing.
Encourage a two-way dialogue with your customers. Even if you aren’t implementing their suggestions, make sure you keep the door open.
#7 – Which is Better?
Customers will often time’s compare one product to another, one brand to another through social media.
Which video player is better? Which camera? Which restaurant? So on and so forth.
Naturally, you want to come out as the winner in these comparisons. That said, you can’t possibly watch and monitor all the different “comparisons” conversations out there. The best you can do is create a top-notch product, then monitor as many social media conversations as you can and see if you generally win these comparisons.
#8 – Allegiance Proclamations
Finally, the best type of social media buzz for your company is an allegiance proclamation. That’s when someone says they’re fed up of someone else’s product and will use yours from now on.
“I’m tired of Burger King; I’m eating at McDonald from now on.” So on and so forth. What’s great about these proclamations is that friends will ask why, and your customer will essentially turn into your spokesperson.
It’s an endorsement for your company in the strongest form. It’s more than just a compliment; it’s an allegiance.
These are eight of the most common types of social media buzz you’ll find around brands. Monitor social media around your brand carefully, as it can tell you a lot about what other people think about your company.
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