Using social listening to plan future blog posts

social listening

A guest post by Brooke Fawkner. 

Whether you own a business or personal blog, your readers will want to feel they are being heard.

While it’s not necessary to base a whole blog post around an individual, you can at least acknowledge them on social media via an in-depth view or a hyper personalised response.

But how can you gather this information to reach a broader target audience?

Social listening vs social monitoring

This is precisely what social listening and monitoring is about. Social monitoring is how to direct your attention to a specific audience. Social listening looks at the bigger picture to realise who has the same or similar problems.

Many people think social listening and social monitoring are synonymous.

Even though they are closely related, social monitoring works on a micro scale, whereas social listening focuses on a much larger scope. Both are very beneficial when planning your future blog posts.

Social monitoring

Social monitoring involves identifying brand mentions and responding to customer enquiries via social media.

People love to talk about the products they have purchased in social media, and every like or mention of your blog is turned into valuable data.

A social monitoring specialist recognises when and where people are talking about your brand, and provide an immediate, specific response in an attempt to resolve an issue or answer a query.

For example, this would mean recognising who is talking about your blog (likes, mentions, hashtags, etc) on social media. It also includes answering a reader’s questions, resolving issues and other direct customer engagement.

Social listening

Social listening usually requires software, as it operates on a much larger scale. It’s aim is to compile customer data to recognise trends, and analyse what your blog is doing correctly or not.

It is a way of looking into the future to accommodate your customers. Social listening means taking note of every reader’s response. This includes being proactive in solving major problems, taking corrective action and reading positive user reviews to expand on what is working for your blog.

Benefits of social listening and monitoring

Social listening analyses every question, concern and positive remark to find out where you should direct your efforts in the future. Social listening suggests more content on popular topics, since that is what the audience enjoys.

Whereas social monitoring is used to find out why the other topics were rejected. These results could help you to write more suitable posts for your readers.

Utilising social listening for future blog posts

People love to talk and share on social media, regardless of whether it is good or bad. This presents an ample opportunity for you as a blogger to engage with your audience.

When used together, social listening and monitoring consistently produce highly relevant blog posts topics. You could find out how well your posts have done through your readers’ comments, which in turn helps you to focus on topics that maintain your audience’s engagement.

Keeping it social

Just as in any relationship, communication with your audience helps you to know how readers respond to your posts and what they think of your writing. The next step is deciding how to keep their interest in the future.

About the author

brooke faulknerBrooke Faulkner is your typical internet nerd. She loves all things technical and is an avid consumer of science podcasts (eh hem, radiolab anyone?). When she’s not writing, she can usually be found chasing her boys around the house with the vacuum. Follow her on Twitter.


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Alice Elliott writes the award winning Fairy Blog Mother blog for beginner and post-beginner bloggers to “explain things really simply” about blogging and WordPress. She provides simple, easy to understand, highly visual courses and tutorials using ordinary, everyday words. Visit her new Beginner Bloggers blog to find her latest learning resources.
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