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Online Technology Is Changing:Listening Platforms

Online Technology Is Changing:Listening Platforms

Patrick is an expert research and travel consultant. His current interest is in airport parking (, and airport hotels (

People will always be talking about your brand and you need to always have an ear on each conversation. Until recently, it took well over six months to launch a product.

Now, thanks to social media, it can take as little as six weeks to get you off the ground. In the past, quite predictably, a company would launch a campaign or product then issue a press release and wait a couple days or weeks for the news cycle before they can plan a reaction.

These days you see reactions to such events on social media sites such as youtube, twitter and other sites barely hours after the launch. In a reversal off roles, today social media has become the standard, while print and television media outlets are starting to be considered traditional.

Consumers continue to use social technologies to drive and control online performance of brands. This has forced organisations to follow suit in order to reclaim their brands by going beyond tracking brand mentions and impressions. Corporations to engage their customers are using social media is more less an ad-hoc market research.

There are various methods and reasons for measuring performance from multiple sources;
1) Measuring and demonstrating customer loyalty over time by
repeat sales and referrals
2) Tracking the volume and sentiment of the posts and
comments written about the company over a period of time
3) Tracking the number of your fans and followers
4) Tracked of conversations, responses, and discussions
5) Tracking the number of customer service issues that are
resolved or channeled through community platforms
6) Tracking and comparing their resolution rate between
community channel and other channels such as phone and

The need to capture these data has led to creation of analytical tools that have been branded online listening platforms. These are intelligent metrics savvy tools that can be leveraged to tap into corporate metrics terminology and methodology. This listening practice provide corporations with real-time online conversations (from customers, prospects, competitors, suppliers, shareholders) about company’s service, brand or products.

Online conversations provide a company with an opportunity to engage with customers, prospects, and influencers about their brand/product.

These insightful communication systems include: product feedback, purchase evaluation criteria, competitive offerings, and customer satisfaction. Online conversations include: blog posts, blog comments, forum posts, tags (images and videos), tweets. The technology enables the corporation to establish a corporate profile. Profile will include topics and keywords used to identify relevant online conversations by corporate and customers.

To make decisions on what is best for the company, this new technology can be used to refine topics and keywords for market promotion based on the online conversations returned via a listening platform. Weekly metrics including volume of online conversations, primary sources of online conversations, business insights and recommendations can be aggregated and analysed.

The sentiments can be manually scored as negative, neutral, mixed, and positive. Whereas most of these activities are done online, sometimes these conversions can be listened to offline as well.

Here is what one of the producers of this technology has to say: “Our reputation management software lets you target traditional and social media that matter, monitor their conversations and coverage, and produce packaged reports and analytics that give you facts that put control back into your hand where it belongs.

With qualified information you can re-align your PR teams, zero in on where you are vulnerable, and re-engage audiences with laser-focused messages. The effort is swift, effective, and cost-efficient.” The listening personnel can collate a daily hot list of online conversations. This list is then attached to some recommendations and actions for the corporate take.

These actions can promote sales; prevent public embarrassment or even legal risk. Also such insights and recommendations can be opportunity for the corporate to accent the positive mentions occurring on the web.

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