Advanced Twitter Listening Tip: Track More Than Just Your Mentions

Twitter is as much – and maybe more – about listening as it is about broadcasting. If you want your business or personal Twitter account to succeed, you’ve got to have a listening strategy in place in order to access valuable feedback, learn, and engage your customers and connections.

But if your listening strategy involves checking out your “@ Connect” folder every once in a while for users mentioning your Twitter handle, you’ve got a long way to go.

Listening on Twitter involves thinking strategically, and thinking like your customers.

For instance, if you wanted to gripe about that lukewarm coffee you just got from your local mom and pop on Twitter, how would you do it?

You might do a quick Google search for their Twitter handle and mention them in your tweet…

“Disappointed with @MomAndPops coffee this morning! #notagoodwaytowakeup”

…Or you might not. Instead, many people simply type “Mom & Pop’s Shop” in their tweet like like:

“Disappointed with Mom & Pop’s Shop coffee this morning! #notagoodwaytowakeup”

And in order to move on customer complaints, comments and questions like the one above, you’ve got to cast a wider listening net than just your @username.

Spend 15 minutes brainstorming as many names as you can that people might use to “tag” your business (or yourself) in their tweets. Start with your @username and full business name of course, but get as creative as you can with the others.

For instance, do you have a popular product? A tagline? Slogan? Prominent CEO? Gather all of the identifiable keywords that people might use to reference your business on Twitter in a single document.

Next, create one or several saved searches that cover the spectrum of these keywords. I say several because some might group more effectively with others: Your five different products might make sense in one saved search, while your three Twitter handles might belong in another.

Be sure to set up a monitoring schedule for when you’ll look at these saved searches. I suggest checking in at least twice a day, morning and evening, to be sure you don’t miss a customer’s Twitter inquiry. And, it goes without saying, you must actively respond to customers mentioning you on Twitter if you want to build a community and be perceived as a business that is socially savvy.

How do you listening on Twitter? Share your strategies with us in the comments below.

(Can on a string image via Shutterstock)