3 Steps for Determining your Social Media Monitoring Strategy

I have had the pleasure of working with hundreds of clients through various aspects of their social media services in my current role and my favorite part is whenever a client is just getting started implementing a social media strategy within their existing campaigns. It is often an eye opening experience since most individuals haven’t done any research into the existing landscape, so I wanted to put together some tips for those starting a new strategy.

1. Define your Goals:
This is the most important part of any social media strategy since these goals will define what terms you will monitor. Radian6 has a nice breakdown to determine your goals but the biggest piece of advice I can offer is make sure your goals are as specific as possible. Make sure you know what metrics you will be measuring or if you are monitoring your own brand, competitors or industry terms. By narrowing down these different variables you can ensure that the data collected will be accurate and relevant.

2. Determine where your clients and conversations take place:
Once you have determined your goals, the next step is determining where you will be monitoring online. I always recommend running a keyword search for your brand, competitors and industry keywords to see where people are talking about your industry. You may not want to monitor these terms on an ongoing basis but it’s a great way to determine which media types (Twitter, Facebook, blogs, forums etc…) already have a presence for your industry. This is typically a surprise to a lot of clients.

3. Look at who is influencing the conversations in each media type:
Now that you have determined which media types you will focus on determining who is driving these conversations. In your CisionPoint account you will have access to the influencer search to identify influencers around a specific topic online. In Cision’s Social Media Dashboard, this is as simple as running a word cloud on each of the media types you will want to monitor. You can even use some of the free insights to identify the most retweeted usernames or sources for your coverage. I have also found sources such as Klout, Kred and Trendspottr to be extremely helpful as well!
What other steps would you include? Are there any other resources that you have found to be useful? I would love to hear any other tips or tricks below in the comments!