3 Overlooked Ways to Improve Your Social Listening

By Kelsey Anderson

There’s a lot of noise on social media. We know you hear it, but are you listening?

By tuning in and listening to your audience, you can start to get a better sense of what they relate to and, in turn, how to relate to them. It sounds daunting, but being able to hone in on relevant chatter will help elevate your brand’s presence.

The main difference between hearing and listening? Attention.

Here are 3 ways you can focus your attention and really listen to your audience.

Read Your Mentions

Your mentions, comments, and direct messages are filled with users who want to interact with you. These are likely your virtual brand champions. Study the words they use and the way they speak. The more authentically you can recreate that, the better.

Practice by responding back to them and work your way up to quoting their tweets or sharing a screenshot of their comment. This can be easy, quick-turn content that’s relatable to your audience.

Search for Your Brand

As much as we wish they would, users don’t always think to tag brands in their posts. Simply searching for your brand name (and common misspellings) can lead you to a gold mine.

This can allow you to interact one-on-one with users who don’t already follow you. A quick like can subtly let these users know that you exist. Beyond these basic interactions, these searches can sometimes unearth content that you can share across your platforms.

Same, Lil' Beefy, same.

A post shared by Reese's Puffs Cereal (@reesespuffscereal) on

Follow Your Audience

Your audience follows you, not the other way around, right? Not quite.

We’d argue that following your audience is a crucial part of understanding who they are. It doesn’t matter where you’re following them from (a dummy test account, the brand account, or your personal) so long as you’re following.

An easy way to start is by identifying influencers and the type of users who are already interacting with your content. Once you’ve got a base, look into who they’re following, sharing, and liking. After a while, you should start to see trends forming. These can be seen in word choice, images, clothing — anything. If you’re noticing something that fits well with your brand, capitalize!

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