How to Identify, Monitor, and Maximize Online Mentions of Your Brand

Kristi Hines
Kristi Hines is a freelance writer, professional blogger, and social media enthusiast. Her blog, Kikolani, covers content, search, and social media marketing for bloggers. Be sure to connect with her on Google+ and Twitter @kikolani

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    Aside from marketing your products and services, one of the most important things a brand can do online is to monitor their reputation. This is important regardless of whether you are experiencing (or plan to experience) a crisis like product recalls, service failures, or any negative attention from media outlets. In this post, we’re going to look at all of the reasons why you would want to monitor your brand mentions, various ways to do it, and when (and how) you should respond to the things you find.

    Why Monitor Your Brand Mentions

     Not sure why you need to monitor mentions of your brand? Here are some of the things you can uncover while monitoring that affect your entire online marketing strategy.

    • The overall sentiment towards your brand.
    • Chances to connect with loyal customers and brand advocates.
    • New product or service ideas.
    • Testimonials for your website.
    • Holes in customer service.
    • Link building opportunities.

    While most people worry about the negative things they will find while monitoring their reputation, the truth is you should find more great opportunities than not.

    Ways to Do It

    Mentions Tracker

    Mentions Tracker

    When it comes to reputation monitoring tools, the sky is the limit. Here are just a few that you can use to cover the bulk of the mentions you could be receiving online.

    • Trackur — Comprehensive social media monitoring tool that you can use to monitor your brand mentions across Twitter, Facebook, and other top social networks.
    • HootSuite — Set up streams of Twitter searches for your brand name and keywords related to your brand.
    • Viralheat  Social Sentiment — Quickly see whether mentions of your brand on social media are mostly positive, negative, or neutral.
    • Google Alerts — Save searches for your brand and get notifications via email or RSS when new results are found on Google.
    • Mentions Tracker — Monitor mentions of your brand plus the domain rank and social shares of the page where your brand is mentioned.

     These are just a sample of the tools that are out there. So long as your collection includes something to monitor search results and social media, you are set.

    When and Where to Respond

    Responding to both good and bad mentions of your brand is important. When you respond to good mentions of your brand, you’re showing your happy customers that you appreciate them. This can lead to even more positive coverage.

    On the flipside, responding to negative mentions in a concerned, helpful way shows an angry customer — and their followers — your dedication to customer service. Even if you don’t win your customer back, you could win new fans that will be impressed by your professionalism and dedication.

    In the event of a crisis, your goal will be to both proactively update your customers via your main social channels, blog, and press release. Then, you will need to try to respond to as many of the comments as possible. Alternatively, you can update your audience on all channels and point them to a place where they can discuss the situation with your brand, such as just on Facebook or a company forum.

    As far as link building opportunities, be on the lookout for mentions of your brand where your company name is mentioned, but not linked to. When you find these mentions, contact the author of the post to see if they would link to you. It’s a great way to build quality editorial links.

    How to Monitor Competitors

     In addition to monitoring your brand, you can also monitor your competitors. By doing this, you can discover new link building opportunities, social networks you should be more active on, and possible problems your competitors may be experiencing that you can take advantage of. If you follow hosting companies, you’ll note that when one has a major issue (like downtime, hacker attacks, etc.), the rest boost their advertising to reach disgruntled customers.

    How do you monitor your brand’s reputation? Please share in the comments!

    Kristi Hines
    Kristi Hines is a freelance writer, professional blogger, and social media enthusiast. Her blog, Kikolani, covers content, search, and social media marketing for bloggers. Be sure to connect with her on Google+ and Twitter @kikolani

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