The Difference Between Social Monitoring and Social Listening

Although these concepts are often interchanged, there are some marked differences between the two tactics. Social monitoring and social listening are both essential parts of a digital marketing strategy, but it is important to know when to use which tool.

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Why? Because nearly 70% of consumers rely on online reviews before making a purchase. So, if you have a bad one, it can really affect your bottom line. Either method wants to work but it’s important to know the difference and why you need them both.

What is Social Monitoring?

This is a process that is used in a social way. It’s identifying and responding to individual thoughts on your brand on social media. Social monitoring means engagement, not just taking the guidelines.

Social monitoring is about addressing customers on a micro scale. It takes a lot more interaction than social listening. During the social monitoring process, customer service reps and social media managers are actively responding to customer queries, comments, and issues.

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These professionals „monitor“ and the right department to do so. Social monitoring takes a more reactive approach than listening. The customer always makes the first move.

What is Social Listening?

If monitoring were the trees, listening is the forest. It’s on a scale but just as necessary (if not more) than monitoring. Social listening is where sales and marketing want to find new leads. It’s where you may discover new platforms where your brand has an audience. It’s about discussing your brand on social media.

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Social listening comes after monitoring because the data that monitoring collects is required for listening. They can solve their problems.

The Comparison

While monitoring is reactive, social listening is proactive. After the short-term, that takes place during monitoring, it’s up to listening to continue the relationship. Social listening looks at long-term strategy. It can help you better understand why you may be getting customer complaints or issues to begin with.

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People use the phrases of „social listening“ and „social monitoring“ interchangeably, but they are not the same. In fact, they are quite opposite. Monitoring comes first and addresses any immediate issues on your plate. It puts out the fires.

Social listening rebuilds the house. If people are happy. They are satisfied with the way they are handled. These facts are important because they help you grow as a business and better understand your consumers.

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It is always wise to use both tactics because, frankly, you both need to keep things running smoothly. People always want to go to social media. It’s how you handle it that truly makes your brand stand out.