We all want to talk. Talking is what every business wants to do. Every single person and every business wants to push our messages and our agenda, our phone number, our websites—buy my stuff. Talking is what business used to be about until social media came along and now it’s about listening.
For the last century those who were in business never had a listening platform. Never! Business was only conducted through talking. Spending millions on focus groups was normal, trying to figure out what customers were thinking. Today, your prospects and customers offer that information for FREE via social media but only if you’re listening.
For example, if I were in the real estate business and I know that in this business there’s a trust shortage. There isn’t a people don’t know how to fill out forms shortage. That what we know from the National Association of Realtors is that: more than 70% of the people who list a house, picks the Realtor who calls them back first.
So, the goal is to figure out how to get called first. To do that I would incorporate Twitter search into my marketing plan. I would use this tool to monitor conversations using keywords. So, as a real estate agent I would monitor conversations within a 25 mile radius of my zip code using keywords like moving, relocation, new job, looking for a house and ect. And then follow those prospects and listen for a need where I can establish a relationship.
Listening to your prospects and customers provides you with at least four benefits:
- It allows you or your employees to solve your customer’s problem.
- It gives your company immediate market feedback about your product or service.
- It will show that your company is listening to its customers and are responsive to them.
- It can provide your company with an opportunity to attach a response to that tweet, status update, or blog post.
This last benefit that I want to mention is very important. What is said, mentioned, ranted, blogged, posted, or tweeted on the Internet stays on the Internet.
Again, people are talking online. The question is whether or not you will listen in.
Question: What are some ways you can use social media to listen to prospects and customers?