This post is by my friend Morgan Siem who is the mastermind of all things social at MediaTwo in Raleigh. You can catch her regularly posting at MediaTwoPointOH! or watch her real time insights via her @mediatwo_social Twitter stream.
I highly recommend monitoring your online reputation, whether you are a person or a company and whether you actively build an online presence or try to avoid the internet. You don’t have to infuse yourself into the online environment to have an online reputation to manage. Anyone aware of your brand can talk about it online. Enough people doing that, with enough of a following, can sometimes have a powerful impact on your bottom line. Therefore, be aware of what’s being said. Once you’re aware, you have the power to:
- Thank those who give you good mentions
- Provide corrections and accurate details when someone has his/her facts wrong
- Try to solve a problem that a customer is having with your product
- Apologize for your mess ups
There are a number of tools that you can use to monitor your reputation. There are free tools as well as paid tools, so the ones you decide to go with may depend on both your budget and the size of your brand.
- Google Alerts: will ping you when there is a mention of your brand name. This is helpful because it scours the net for your and lets you know when something comes up, which saves you the effort of doing regular searches. The downsides are that it misses a lot of mentions and doesn’t allow you to fine-tune your search terms.
- Twitter Search: allows you to track brand mentions in real time. You can subscribe to an RSS feed of the mentions to help you keep track of them.
- Social Mention: This tool provides a few bonuses over other free monitoring tools, the primary bonus being that it scans a variety of social networks instead of just twitter (search.twitter.com) or just blogs (technorati.com). It also generates a sentiment score, although I wouldn’t trust it. And, like Google Alerts, it gives you the option to sign up for alerts.
- Radian6: Probably the most talked-about monitoring tool is Radian6, which allows you to track brand, competitor and industry mentions across a variety of online sources. Some of the cool widgets offered are a conversation cloud, a river of news, a topic trend analysis graph and a list of key influencers.
- FiltrBox: This tool is gaining ground in the monitoring industry, but its prices are rising in fast pursuit. This tool also allows you to track conversations across several sources and provides a river of news and a list of top influencers. A benefit of this tool is that it will send you a daily digest of new mentions, and it will allow you to create as many new profiles as you’d like (unlike Radian6, which charges you for each new profile). However, it is not as robust as Radian6. There are fewer options for tagging posts and the conversation cloud has very limited functionality.
There are many other tools out there and many more being created every day. Which ones have you tried? What did you like or not like and why?
Maria Ogneva says
Great post about importance of monitoring and listening. We at Biz360 offer a flexible UI that allows you to build topics around the most relevant keywords (product names, competitors’s brands) and display actionable charts and statistics. We provide automated sentiment measurement, so you can see how your product is received and reach out to your critics, as well as your champions. Let me know if you want to give us a whirl mogneva (at) biz360 (dot) com
Maria Ogneva says
I meant, hi Morgan and Phil – since this is a guest post on Phil’s blog 🙂
I’ve been a fan of Google Alerts for a while now and recommended up until it started grabbing all Twitter posts as well, so every time I tweet, I get a Google alert. Effective, yes? Worthwhile, maybe not. If you’re big enough to afford someone to monitor this for you, by all means do so – but if you’re not it’s not too tough to use your buddy Google to help find places where you may be getting good (or bad) ink.
Morgan Siem says
A good point, Andy. Google Alerts are a helpful tool, and the price is right. However, the limitation on search terms can create a problem for some people or companies with more commonly used names. I’m lucky that everything returned for “morgansiem” is relevant to me. But, “1918” doesn’t have that advantage. Google alerts doesn’t provide a way to filter out the irrelevant content. One of the greatest benefits to a more robust tool is the ability to define your search terms with more accuracy.
your links for paid tools are wrong – throwing 404s
Phil Buckley says
Thanks Aussiewebmaster, fixed now.
Michael Fraietta says
Thanks Morgan and Phil for the writeup about our industry and for mentioning Filtrbox. Expect to see great enhancements to Filtrbox over the next few months as we will working real hard to make it more robust.
As far as other platforms, I have tried several of these tools (for obvious reasons) and I often recommend Synthesio when there is a need for multiple language results including Chinese.
Maria, I still have not seen Biz360 😉
Filtrbox Community Manager & Chief Listener
Lauren Vargas says
Being aware of online reputation opens the door to new opportunity from within your organization and also with forging external relationships. Thank you for the shout out!
Community Manager at Radian6