Top 29 Social Listening Tools for Marketers in 2020

List of the top social listening tools available to marketers in 2020.

There are tons of social listening tools out there and it’s hard to choose the one that’s right for your company. 

If you’re looking for a social media listening tool in particular—one that can track what people are saying about your brand—then you’ve come to the right place.

To make your search for the right social listening tool easier, we’ve compiled a huge list of the best tools in the industry, including research on the pros and cons of each tool.

Here’s a full roundup of the top social listening tools for marketers and agencies, updated for 2020:

Looking for a specific tool? Jump ahead:

1. Keyhole

2. Hootsuite
3. HubSpot
4. Union Metrics
5. BuzzSumo
6. Sprout Social
7. Mention
8. Brand24
9. YouScan
10. Agorapulse
11. Brandwatch
12. BrandMentions
13. Meltwater
14. Sprinklr
15. TalkWalker
16. Mentionlytics
17. Digimind
18. Zoho
19. Falcon.io
20. Iconosquare
21. Awario
22. Nuvi
23. Sendible
24. Reputation.com
25. Socialbakers
26. Oktopost
27. Statusbrew
28. Sentione
29. Mediatoolkit

1. Keyhole

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Keyhole

Keyhole helps marketers measure the impacts of their marketing campaigns. Keyhole offers campaign monitoring, influencer tracking, brand mention monitoring, and powerful competitor research tools that make it easy to benchmark your campaigns against your competitors’.

Keyhole offers social media listening and analytics for Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and other online media sources all in one easy to use dashboard.

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Keyhole Social Media AnalyticsDashboard

Take it from Neil Patel: “This tool [Keyhole] does a lot of things others can’t. And as a bonus, it’s extremely user-friendly.”

You can also use Keyhole to conduct social listening and identify which online accounts or influencers are talking about you or your brand.

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Keyhole - Best Social Listening Tool

Using social listening, you can conduct in-depth sentiment analysis and understand how your audience feels about your brand, certain features, or if there’s anything noteworthy.

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Keyhole - Sentiment Analysis

Pro: Keyhole has an attractive, real-time analytics and mentions dashboard that can easily be exported to client-ready PDFs.

Pricing: Starts at $30 USD per month after a free trial. You can view all Keyhole pricing plans here.

2. Hootsuite

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Hootsuite

Hootsuite is one of the longest-standing and most popular social media management platforms. While it’s best-known for its social media publishing features, it does possess a suite of social listening features, branded as Hootsuite Insights Powered by Brandwatch.

Hootsuite has useful features to help you track brand mentions, identify thought leaders and influencers, and track brand sentiment.

Pro: Hootsuite has a robust set of end-to-end features for pretty much anything you would ever want to do on social media, from publishing, to advertising, to tracking.

Con: Hootsuite’s big feature set comes with a big price tag, and the social listening features are only available for their Business and Enterprise-level plans.

Pricing: Hootsuite’s social listening features are a paid add-on to their Business and Enterprise plans, starting at $599 USD.

3. HubSpot

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Hubspot

HubSpot is an all-in-one stack of marketing, sales, and service tools. HubSpot offers everything from a CRM, to a CMS, to a customer service platform.

As part of their marketing stack, HubSpot offers social media monitoring to create custom keyword monitoring streams, email alerts to track mentions, and analytics tools to compare performance across social channels.

Pro: If you prefer all of your tools in one place, HubSpot has nearly every marketing tool you could ever need.

Con: Because HubSpot does so many things, their social listening features aren’t as deep as some of the other tools on our list, and the 

Pricing: HubSpot’s social listening features are included in their Professional and Enterprise plans, starting at $800 USD per month.

4. Union Metrics

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Union Metrics

Union Metrics is a social media analytics tool that offers social media metrics, keyword listening, campaign reporting, and competitive analysis.

Union Metrics offers standard listening features like real-time mention monitoring, sentiment analysis, and insights like best times to post.

Pro: Union Metrics has many easy-to-use analytics dashboards.

Con: Union Metrics’ more advanced social listening features like sentiment analysis aren’t unlocked until their top pricing tier.

Pricing: Union Metrics starts at $39 USD per month if paid annually.

5. BuzzSumo

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Buzzsumo

BuzzSumo is a popular content discovery tool, allowing marketers to track content that’s trending for certain topics or keywords.

Although not exactly a social listening tool in the sense of some of the other tools on our list, with BuzzSumo, you can track competitors, brand mentions, and industry updates.

Pro: BuzzSumo is extremely useful for tracking trending content and influencers.

Con: BuzzSumo doesn’t offer as much when it comes to tracking your social media accounts.

Pricing: BuzzSumo starts at $79 USD per month when paying yearly.

6. Sprout Social

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Sprout Social

Sprout Social is a full social media management platform, allowing you to track engagement, manage your publishing schedule, measure analytics, and perform social listening.

Sprout Social has tons of useful social listening features like audience demographic analysis, customer sentiment tracking, influencer identification, campaign analysis, and competitor comparisons.

Pro: Sprout Social offers an all-in-one social inbox to track Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn in one place.

Con: The Standard pricing tier has limited social listening features.

Pricing: Sprout Social pricing starts at $99 USD per user per month.

7. Mention

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Mention

As the name suggests, Mention lets you track all of your brand mentions online. Mention offers a variety of social listening and publishing tools to monitor online media, analyze your competition, and manage your brand.

Mention offers real-time mention tracking and detailed analytics on your industry competitors.

Pro: Mention provides daily recap emails with key info as well as alert emails when your mentions suddenly spike.

Con: Their pricing model limits the number of mentions you can track per month.

Pricing: Mention has a free model for up to 250 mentions. Their paid plans start at $25 USD per month.

8. Brand24

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Brand24

Brand24 offers brand mention tracking across social platforms, news sites and blogs, video sites, review platforms, and more.

Brand24 features include a mentions feed, a discussion volume chart, marketing analytics, influence score, sentiment analysis, alerts, and reporting features.

Pro: Brand24 has some extra bonuses like a Slack integration and a mobile app.

Con: Online reviews mention a sometimes-challenging user interface and a thinner feature set than similarly priced tools.

Pricing: Brand24 pricing starts at $49 USD per month.

9. YouScan

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Youscan

YouScan is another social media listening tool that offers monitoring of social media, blogs, forums, reviews, and other online media.

YouScan offers some unique AI-powered listening features like logo recognition and object and scene detection to help brands track pictures as well as brand mentions.

Pro: YouScan’s Visual Insights feature is a game-changer for brands that want to track when their products appear in a post.

Con: YouScan has a huge price tag, so it’s cost-prohibitive unless you’re a major global brand.

Pricing: YouScan pricing starts at $12,000 USD per year.

10. Agorapulse

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Agorapulse

Agorapulse is another full social media management platform, comparable to Hootsuite, Sprout Social, or Buffer.

On top of publishing and analytics tools, Agorapulse offers basic social media listening features like brand mention monitoring on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.

Pro: Agorapulse offers some unique collaboration features like the ability to label important posts or assign a post to a teammate.

Con: Because Agorapulse is a full social media management tool, its social media listening tracking features aren’t as robust as some of the dedicated tools.

Pricing: Agorapulse pricing starts at $79 USD per month when paid annually.

11. Brandwatch

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Brandwatch

Brandwatch is an AI-powered social media listening tool. It’s a well-established tool that allows you to benchmark competitors, track audience sentiment and demographics, and uncover influencers.

Brandwatch also offers many new listening features like image analysis, historical data, trending topic identification, and entity tagging to train AI.

Pro: Brandwatch always has some of the most innovative features in the social media monitoring space.

Con: Brandwatch is one of the priciest tools on the market.

Pricing: Brandwatch does not make its pricing available on its website, but according to PCMag, Brandwatch pricing starts at $1,000 USD per month.

12. BrandMentions

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Brandmentions

BrandMentions is another social media monitoring tool that offers standard features like brand monitoring, competitor tracking, sentiment analysis, and reputation management.

Pro: BrandMention also allows you to integrate website traffic monitoring into your analytics reports.

Con: In online reviews, some users report difficulty filtering down a large number of social media mentions.

Pricing: BrandMentions starts at $49 USD per month.

13. Meltwater

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Meltwater

Meltwater is a full marketing and social media suite offering social media monitoring, online media monitoring, social engagement reports, influencer management, newswire distribution, media relations tools, and more.

They allow social media monitoring for 15 different social networks, and offer tracking through a mobile app.

Pro: Meltwater is a powerful PR tool and offers a robust media database.

Con: Meltwater constantly adds new features, but they often require add-on pricing and can be overwhelming for users, according to online reviews.

Pricing: Meltwater doesn’t post pricing publicly, but according to Prowly, pricing starts at $4,000 USD per year.

14. Sprinklr

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Sprinklr

Sprinklr is a customer experience management (CXM) platform. Sprinklr is quite different than many of the other tools on our list, as its bread and butter is allowing you to engage with customers and monitor their experience with your product or service.

That said, as part of its offering, Sprinklr allows you to perform audience profiling, identify influencers, benchmark against competitors, and measure custom metrics.

Pro: Sprinklr allows you to unify your customer experience management with your marketing activities.

Con: Sprinklr is an enterprise platform that isn’t suitable for small and medium businesses.

Pricing: Sprinklr does not make its pricing available online, but its pricing is reportedly modular based on which features you add.

15. TalkWalker

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Talkwalker

TalkWalker is primarily a social media listening tool, with standard features like mention tracking, report creation, and automated alerts.

TalkWalker also has more advanced features like brand image detection, a Virality Map, and other AI-powered features.

Pro: On top of standard social media and online mention tracking, Talkwalker also allows you to monitor TV and radio content.

Con: TalkWalker’s pricing is catered only to larger businesses.

Pricing: TalkWalker pricing starts at $9,600 USD per year.

16. Mentionlytics

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Mentionlytics

Mentionlytics is a fairly standard social media monitoring tool for business of all sizes. They also offer social intelligence and publishing tools.

Mentionlytics allows you to track mentions on social media, online news, and other online platforms. It also allows you to reply to tweets or posts in real-time. You can also monitor keywords and competitors to identify sales opportunities.

Pro: Mentionlytics has AI-powered features to help you identify fans, ambassadors, and even trolls.

Con: Users have reported an outdated UI design, but as of 2020 they have a new beta design in the works.

Pricing: Mentionlytics pricing starts at $39 USD per month.

17. Digimind

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Digimind

Digimind is a social intelligence tool offering solutions for brand reputation, competitive intelligence, consumer insights, influencer identification, trend tracking, and marketing campaign analysis.

Digimind’s social listening tools include geolocalization, automatic sentiment and translation, topic clustering, and “marked as read” capabilities.

Pro: Digimind’s Top Reputation module allow you to track what people are searching for when they research your brand.

Con: According to online reviews, the tool can be quite cumbersome for beginners.

Pricing: Digimind does not make its pricing publicly available. Contact to discuss.

18. Zoho

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Soho

Zoho is a cloud software suite with many SaaS applications for businesses. On top of social tools, they offer a CRM, email and document platforms, and financial tools.

Zoho’s social tools include publishing, monitoring, and reporting. Their listening tools allow you to monitor brand mentions in real time.

Pro: Zoho allows you to create your own monitoring dashboard.

Con: As Zoho isn’t a social platform at its core, the tool is fairly limited in features outside of mention tracking.

Pricing: Zoho’s pricing starts at $10 USD per month.

19. Falcon.io

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Falcon.io

Falcon.io is a full social media platform that allows you to publish content, create ad campaigns, engage with your audience, and monitor the web for insights.

Falcon.io’s social listening tools include trend tacking, sentiment analysis, audience demographics, and influencer identification.

Pro: Falcon.io has a custom audience tool that allows you to create an audience based on the profiles detected through your social listening campaigns.

Con: According to user reviews, there are no export capabilities for reports.

Pricing: Falcon.io starts at $129 USD per month.

20. Iconosquare

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Iconosquare

Iconosquare is an Instagram analytics, management, and scheduling platform for brands and agencies.

Iconosquare is one of the most powerful Instagram analytics tools, offering competitor analytics, hashtag analytics, promoted posts analytics, industry benchmarking, conversation tracking, scheduling, Excel and PDF reports, custom dashboard, and more.

Pro: Iconosquare offers some unique Instagram features, like tracking of individual comments, photo tags, and mentions and tracking of content types like photos, videos, and carousel images.

Con: Iconosquare only allows tracking for Instagram and Facebook, unlike most of the other tools on this list.

Pricing: Iconosquare starts at $29 USD per month.

21. Awario

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Awario

Awario is another popular brand monitoring tool. Awario tracks brand mentions and keywords in real time and offers additional features like sentiment analysis, influencer tracking, boolean search, white label reporting, and email alerts.

Pro: Awario has a social selling feature that tracks competitor complaints or recommendations for your product category, allowing you to identify leads on the fly.

Con: The abundance of information in Awario gives it a steep learning curve compared to its competitors.

Pricing: Awario starts at $29 USD ($49 CAD) per month.

22. Nuvi

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Nuvi

Nuvi is a customer experience and reputation management tool that includes social media publishing and listening tools.

Nuvi’s listening capabilities include keyword monitoring, influencer analytics, sentiment analysis, audience insights, and automated reporting.

Pro: Nuvi’s robust platform also includes content planning, publishing, creation, and collaboration tools.

Con: As social listening isn’t Nuvi’s main feature, it doesn’t offer much beyond the basics.

Pricing: Nuvi does not make its pricing publicly available online. Contact for pricing.

23. Sendible

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Sendible

Sendible is a social media management and tracking tool that includes features for planning, collaboration, engagement, and analytics.

Sendible’s listening capabilities include mention alerts and hashtag and keyword monitoring. 

Pro: Sendible monitors Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and LinkedIn.

Con: Sendible has a wide feature set, but its listening capabilities are fairly shallow.

Pricing: Sendible starts at $16 USD per month when paying yearly, 

24. Reputation.com

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Reputation

As its name suggests, Reputation.com is a complete reputation management tool. Its capabilities include online review monitoring, business listing management, directory management, surveys, and social tools.

Their social listening tool includes mention tracking and sentiment analysis.

Pro: Reputation.com has a huge suite of reputation management tools.

Con: Reputation.com is less useful for those looking for social media insights.

Pricing: Reputation.com does not publish its pricing online.

25. Socialbakers

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Socialbakers

Socialbakers is a unified social media marketing platform that includes research and content strategy tools, social media management, measurement and reporting, customer care, influencer marketing, and listening tools.

Their social listening tool is powered by AI that automatically labels posts to help you spot trends. They also offer sentiment analysis and mention tracking across multiple channels.

Pro: Socialbakers offers helpful collaboration and approval flow capabilities.

Con: Socialbakers’ rich feature set comes with a rich price tag.

Pricing: Socialbakers starts at $200 USD per month when paid annually.

26. Oktopost

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Oktopost

Oktopost brands itself as the social media management platform for B2B enterprise. It features tools for social media management, social employee advocacy, and social media promotions.

Oktopost’s social media listening tools include keyword, mention, and competitor tracking, primarily aimed at customer support.

Pro: Oktopost offers the unique ability to amplify your social posts through your employees’ social accounts.

Con: Oktopost is more focused on B2B promotion than social listening.

Pricing: Oktopost does not publish its pricing online.

27. Statusbrew

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Statusbrew

Statusbrew is a tool for social media management, marketing, monitoring, and customer care.

Statusbrew provides live mention and conversation tracking, advanced keyword queries, sentiment analysis, lead profile building.

Pro: Statusbrew integrates with Google Drive, Slack, HubSpot, Salesforce, Zendesk, Dynamics 365, and other popular tools.

Con: Statusbrew is comparably more expensive than some of the similar listening tools on our list.

Pricing: Statusbrew starts at $99 USD per month when billed annually.

28. Sentione

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Sentione

Sentione is an AI-based social listening and conversational bot tool. Sentione provides tools for online data analytics, chatbots, voicebots, and other automation-powered customer service tools.

Sentione’s social listening capabilities include audience insights, comparative research, automated alerts, and AI-based anomaly detection.

Pro: Sentione’s social listening tool allows for unlimited keyword tracking.

Con: Sentione is quite a bit pricier than other listening tools.

Pricing: Sentione’s basic social listening plan starts at $299 USD per month.

29. Mediatoolkit

Social Media Tools - Social Listening Tools - Mediatoolkit

Mediatoolkit is our final brand monitoring tool. Mediatoolkit provides website and social media monitoring on Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, forums, blogs, and review platforms like TripAdvisor.

Mediatoolkit offers deep search capabilities, including location and language filters. They also offer sentiment analysis, influencer tracking, and custom PDF reports.

Pro: Mediatoolkit offers mobile and Slack notifications.

Con: For a tool that only provides social tracking, its pricing is quite high.

Pricing: Mediatoolkit starts at $117 USD per month.


Start your Social Listening Analytics Journey

If you’ve made it this far, you’re either the world’s biggest fan of social listening tool, or like to weigh all your options before selecting a social listening tool.


Related Articles:

Top 25 Social Media Analytics Tools: The Definitive Guide

16 Content Creation Tools to Make Life as a Marketer Easier

To get insights about your brand within minutes, we recommend our social listening tool: Keyhole. Start your free trial now!

Top 25 Social Media Analytics Tools: The Definitive Guide

The Top 25 Social Media Analytics Tools

[Updated in June 2020, for a brand new Social Media Analytics Tools comparison!]

Did you miss our previous article on the 27 best Hashtag Analytics strategies? No worries, you can read it here: https://keyhole.co/blog/hashtag-analytics-27-actionable-strategies/

It can be a daunting task.

You’ve asked everyone and every query tool for the best social media analytics tools and you’re still unsure which to use. And you don’t have the time and money to waste using a tool only to find out later on that it doesn’t suit your needs. 

Whether you’re asking other marketers or searching on Google, it can be quite confusing — with every brand making enticing promises.

How do you know which of them would deliver on their promise? A good complete guide is a great place to look.

Here’s a guide showing you the top 25 social media analytics tools, and how they work.

Looking for a specific tool? Jump ahead:
1. Keyhole
2. AgoraPulse
3. Brandwatch
4. BrandMentions
5. Meltwater
6. Reputology
7. TapInfluence
8. Hootsuite
9. NetBase
10. Oktopost
11. quintly
12. Rival IQ
13. Social Studio
14. Sprout Social
15. Socialbakers
16. Brand24
17. Mention
18. Followerwonk
19. Iconosquare
20. Audiense
21. Tailwind
22. TweetReach
23. Falcon.io
24. Minter.io
25. Snaplytics

Read moreTop 25 Social Media Analytics Tools: The Definitive Guide

Keyhole Social Media AnalBottleRock

How BottleRock Music Festival Amps Up Influencer Engagement with Keyhole

Updated on May 24th, 2020.

BottleRock is a Napa Valley music festival that aims to bring together the best of Napa culture- wine, music, food and more wine, in true Napa fashion.

Jump Links:

Identifying and Finding Influencers
Identifying Trends by Tracking Hashtags Year-Round
Sharing User Generated Content Live At Your Event
Optimizing Content

“When people come to Napa, the first thing that they think of is great wine. What goes along with great wine is great food, and what pairs perfectly with food and wine is music. Add beautiful rolling hills, vineyards, and world-class hospitality and you have what we call BottleRock Napa Valley.”

-Jasa Laliberte, Marketing Manager.

Jasa Laliberte for BottleRock for Keyhole

The festival was originally started in 2013, and by 2015 was selling out. In 2018, with an impressive lineup, festival tickets sold out earlier than ever before, spurring successful sales and a dedicated fanbase in the years of the festival after.

“We really focus a lot on customer experience, paying particular emphasis to our 4 different levels of VIP and providing an all-around amazing experience for the concert-goer from start to finish. In the same way that Napa provides such amazing hospitality, we try to do the same thing at our festival.”

Why Keyhole?

The marketing team at BottleRock accomplishes some pretty awesome feats through our tool year-round. Check it out! They include:

Identifying & Finding Influencers

Jasa’s team is able to regularly find and engage artists and influencers they didn’t know were speaking about BottleRock through Keyhole’s Influencers feature.

The ‘Influencers’ tab in Keyhole shows top users engaging with your hashtag or keyword, allowing you to engage with them and their content directly from the platform.

“Before Keyhole, I wasn’t seeing some of the bigger accounts that were talking about us. I just never knew they were out there being a positive influencer for us! So now I’m definitely looking into those people. We have kind of a daily ‘a-ha!’ moment with Keyhole.”

Identifying Trends by Tracking Hashtags Year-Round

According to Jasa, Keyhole’s biggest impact is saving time by clearly depicting cross-platform data.

We asked Jasa what she did before Keyhole, to which she laughingly replied, “Well, I had lots of spreadsheets!”

“The biggest thing that’s been helpful for us is being able to actually see our overall impressions online. The data was on different platforms and we were not able to see what other people were saying about us very easily. Now we are actually able to put a number and a statistic behind it.”

By tracking relevant hashtags and keywords year-round, Jasa’s team is also able to identify relevant trends as they happen, and adjust their marketing strategies and event accordingly.

“The biggest things are the analytics behind it, the numbers. We’ve tracked hashtags for the last 5 years, but we’ve never done it all year round–so it’s been beneficial for us to see different trends and quantify them.”

By being able to identify trends and track keywords and hashtags, it brings numerous benefits to the team by being able to measure reach and engagement, benchmark against competitors or other similar festivals, as well as track how people feel about milestones such as lineup announcements. 

Sharing User Generated Content Live At Your Event

Keyhole offers a Media Wall feature that’s extremely easy to moderate, and allows your audience to share content and connect on any sized screen. 

Whether it’s a massive jumbotron or simply a mobile app, help your event attendees connect and share experiences through the Media Wall feature. 

BottleRock uses Keyhole’s Media Wall to live stream content that festival attendees share on their social media to enhance the experience.

The team can also control what is actually being displayed on the Media Wall with the handy moderation feature – filtering out any content that may be inappropriate or irrelevant. 

Optimizing Content

Lastly, Keyhole helps with content creation by giving insight into the types of conversations users are having.

Keyhole’s word cloud for the ‘#BottleRock’ Keyword tracker shows what else people discuss when talking about Napa online.

“It is influencing our strategy. As we are moving to figure out specific copy and content, we are looking at what we’re putting out there in terms of hashtags and keywords, and figuring out what themes and trends we are seeing…what is being engaged with the most. We try and find that theme and replicate it.”

The word cloud helps to identify relevant themes and topics that can bring insights into marketing strategies by shining light on subjects that are also being buzzed about. 

Keyhole Streamlines Marketing Processes

Overall, Keyhole’s data has helped BottleRock’s marketing team save time and simplify their processes, allowing them to focus on what’s most important: creating unforgettable festival experiences and selling out year after year.

What can Keyhole do for you? Sign up for a 3-day free trial and find out!


Related Articles:

Broadcast and Media Companies: Improving Performance with Social Media Analytics

How NBC Universal Uses Keyhole to Flag Security Breaches


Keyhole is a real-time conversation tracker that provides keyword + hashtag analytics and social media analytics across platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Get started for free here.

5 Top Brandwatch Alternatives

Your social media success depends on how well you are able to listen to what your audience is saying about you, your competitors and your market in general.

This is what social listening and social media monitoring is all about. 

With data and insights extracted from your social listening efforts, you are able to know your customers better and improve your marketing strategy. 

Are you using a tool like Brandwatch, but find it a little too pricey or just out of your budget?

We’re bringing you five top Brandwatch alternatives that will get you the results that you need. 

Jump Links:

1. Keyhole
2. Hootsuite
3. Mention
4. Falcon.io
5. Sprout Social

1. Keyhole

What makes Keyhole one of the top Brandwatch alternatives is that it has the same features as Brandwatch, but it’s cheaper.

Keyhole is a powerful monitoring tool that lets you monitor hashtags, keywords, URLs, topics, social media handles and more. 

Keyhole allows you to track mentions and keywords across news, blogs and forums, in addition to social media accounts.

These insights help you understand who your followers are, and who your competitors’ followers are. This way, you are able to give them content they will appreciate.  

keyhole dashboard - new branding

It doesn’t end there. 

Get social media account analytics for Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. With these analytics, you’ll know what you’re doing right and how to keep growing your accounts over time.

Spy on your competitors with Keyhole. Get to know how many followers they have, their engagement numbers and who is leading the conversation in your industry, and why.

Keyhole will also show you influencers, sentiment, and trending topics derived from the mentions collected.

Pricing: Keyhole offers a free trial and 3 pricing tiers. Keyhole’s Account Analytics plan starts as low as $29/month, and the Enterprise Suite is $999/month.

2. Hootsuite

hootsuite

Hootsuite is another one of the best Brandwatch alternatives that lets you bring all your social media marketing efforts into one dashboard.

The Hootsuite dashboard enables teams to collaboratively schedule updates to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, among others. 

Monitor how specific search terms are performing in real-time. This is especially handy if you want to see how certain keywords perform in your industry so you can add or drop them from your marketing campaign. 

Hootsuite is also handy for tracking brand mentions, campaign results and industry trends.

Pricing: Price starts from $19/mo to $599/mo depending on the number of social profiles and users. 

3. Mention

Mention will monitor brand mentions on social media. 

You can monitor your company name, your competitor, or a business-related phrase and see what people are saying – in real-time.

You can respond to these conversations right from your Mention dashboard as long as you’ve connected your social accounts. This is a good way to show your audience that you’re listening to them and build your brand reputation. 

Pricing: Price starts from $25/mo up to $450+/mo depending on the number of alerts, mentions and social profiles. 

4. Falcon.io

Want to do more than monitoring and listening using just one tool?

Try out Falcon.io

This is a SaaS platform that allows you to conduct social media monitoring, publish social media content, manage your customer experience and generate analytics all from one place. 

Falcon.io aims at enabling marketers to deliver more personalized brand experiences to their customers. 

Pricing: From $129 month for single users and small teams.

5. Sprout Social

Grow your social media following and increase your customer base with Sprout Social.

With Sprout Social, you can monitor your platforms, engage new and old fans, measure performance and grow your brand online.  

If you want to see how you stack up against your competitors, then you’ll love Sprout Social’s engagement feature that shows social engagement trends by day and time. It also provides you with engagement analytics from your competitors. 

Pricing: Starts from $99 per user/mo for 5 social profiles and $249 per user/mo for 10 social profiles.

Amidst all the noise online, your target audience is trying to say something to you. 

Listen to them and give them exactly what they want.

Any one of these top Brandwatch alternatives is the magic wand that you need to do this effectively!


Keyhole is a real-time conversation tracker that provides keyword and hashtag analytics for Twitter and Instagram. Get started for free and search your brand.

15 Social Media Branding Strategies to Capture and Retain Your Target Audience

Updated on March 5th, 2020.

As competitors strengthen their online profiles, the need to differentiate your brand’s identity on social media grows.

Building a recognizable brand known for its positive qualities will help gain and retain followers. Successfully executing branding strategies can help win customers, too.

But developing a powerful, branded social media presence is a challenge you can’t quickly overcome.

Consider using these 15 social media branding strategies to do the job help you achieve a strong social media brand presence.

Jump Links:

Influencer Marketing:
1. Connect with Influencers
2. Get an influencer to Takeover

Consistent Messaging
3. Optimize Your Bio and Your Profile
4. Develop Your Voice
5. Be Consistent with that Voice and Your Topics
6. Post Regularly
7. Embrace Visuals

Continuous Engagement
8. Share User Generated Content
9. Create Groups or Communities
10. Join Chats
11. Avoid Platforms Unpopular with Your Audiences
12. Promote Your Profiles Beyond Social Media
13. Offer Users More than They Expect

Ongoing Analysis
14. Monitor Constantly
15. Measure Your Efforts

Influencer Marketing

For those who’ve built a respectable social media following, many strategists consider influencer marketing a next step in building brand recognition.

By getting an influencer who closely aligns with your target image to promote your accounts, audiences should associate your brand more closely with that target image.

For example, many consumers associate Under Armour with athletic strife and excellence because Steph Curry is its biggest spokesperson.

Though your brand may not be able to contract an NBA superstar, there are almost certainly influencers in your industry who can deliver branding benefits.

To identify influencers based on the hashtags and keywords they post with, make a search for those terms:

1. Connect with Influencers

The first step in executing an influencer marketing campaign is identifying suitable influencers.

Of course, they must have large audiences. But those audiences must be engaged. Some studies show the average engagement rate on Twitter is between 1 and 2%, so anything higher is suitable for an influencer.

The next step is building a relationship with an influencer who matches your criteria.

You can start by following target influencers on their main social channels, interacting with their updates and sharing their content.

Once you’ve built some rapport, pitch a campaign that builds your brand’s image while benefiting the influencer. The next section covers an example of how to do so.

2. Get an Influencer to Take Over

Getting an influencer to run your social channels for a day entices their fans to follow you, while giving him or her another avenue to showcase wit and knowledge.

For example, comedian and diehard Boston Red Sox fan Rob Delaney ran the MLB Twitter account on May 7, 2013. The profile gained about 20,000 followers, as Delaney tweeted baseball “facts.”

Influencer Marketing - 15 Social Media Branding Strategies - Influencer Takeover for the MLB

What’s more, the takeover helped MLB build a reputation on social media that many sports organizations aim to achieve: being funny and relaxed.

Consistent Messaging

The core of brand building on social media largely involves creating themes — or, messages — and regularly demonstrating them through text and visuals.

Whereas influencer marketing campaigns may be best executed once you’ve grown a sizeable following, consistent messaging should begin when you join a social channel.

It may take trial and error to see which kinds of content best resonate with target audiences.

But once you’ve figured that out, being consistent in your messaging should reinforce your brand image.

3. Optimize Your Bio and Profile

Your social profiles should encapsulate your business and its main messages, acting as a pitch for those who visit.

Summarize the benefits of using your products or services in your profile description, including applicable keywords to make your account easier to find for audience members. You should also provide another method of contact for serious business inquiries.

Consider emulating these profile descriptions:

Profile Optimization - 15 Social Media Branding Strategies

Depending on the platform, you can also alter your background, profile picture and theme colours to reflect your logo and match your website.

By doing so, consumers will begin to recognize your brand assets.

4. Develop Your Voice

Establishing a common posting tone makes your updates distinct and easily-recognizable. This can also help build a connection with your target audiences, especially if your voice is in tune with them.

Take IHOP as an example. On Twitter, the pancake house appeals to its young demographic by piggybacking off popular phrases among teens and writing without punctuation — similar to what you’d see in instant messaging.

Develop a Voice - 15 Social Media Branding Strategies

If you’re unfamiliar with relevant phrases or jargon, monitor your main social channels more closely. You’ll likely identify niche terms you can use to develop your voice.

On a surface level, using a distinct voice increases IHOP’s engagement. Deeper, it encourages followers to associate IHOP with a laid-back dining atmosphere.

5. Be Consistent with that Voice and Your Topics

You must be consistent with your voice — and the topics you post about — to build an authentic connection with your target audience, influencing them to keep your brand top of mind.

Otherwise, that voice you’ve worked hard to create may seem forced and disingenuous.

Deviating from core topics can also compromise brand tone and messaging.

Going back to IHOP as an example, its social media strategists don’t post about government food sanctions. Doing so could damage how the audience perceives the restaurant.

Stick to your voice and main topics to enforce your brand’s image.

6. Post Regularly

Since social media branding centres on influencing your audience to easily recognize and remember you, irregular posting damages your efforts by keeping you off user newsfeeds.

Posting frequency depends on audience activity and how audience members engage.

For example, you may realize that tweeting in the morning earns more replies than doing so in the evening. You could also earn more engagement by posting twice a week instead of five times to a given platform.

This will take some experimentation to determine.

However, an optimal posting schedule helps keep user attention while potentially earning more followers.

7. Embrace Visuals

Images can be powerful tools to encapsulate your brand’s identity and messages, instead of seemingly-random pictures with your logo tacked on.

Visual content should reflect:

  • Themes your brand stands for
  • Your brand’s unique or differentiating values
  • The topics your audience is interested in

Take this image from Red Bull’s Instagram account as an example:

Use Visuals - 15 Social Media Branding Strategies

It shows Red Bull’s connection to extreme stunts and appeals to its high-energy audience.

As well as engaging fans, visual content of this quality builds and solidifies brand identity.

Continuous Engagement

Frequently engaging fans, followers and other audience members allows you to constantly communicate and demonstrate your brand’s core values.

You can engage audiences by sharing original and third-party party content that ties into brand messages, or running contests and social events related to them.

For B2C brands, replying to users also exemplifies favourable traits such as friendliness and helpfulness, especially when answering questions and helping solve issues.

As a bonus, regular engagement helps keep your brand at the top of consumer minds. This can potentially boost sales and other meaningful actions.

8. Share User-Generated Content

Like posting testimonials on your website, sharing user-generated content that positively depicts your brand can strengthen its identity.

Consider that more than 90% of consumers trust earned media — characterized as word-of-mouth from impartial sources — more than all other types of advertising.

Take a plus-size clothing company for example.

To reap the benefits of word-of-mouth on social media, share similar user-generated content.

9. Create Groups & Communities (or Participate in Them)

Creating, or participating in, groups and communities helps overcome many networks’ low organic engagement rates.

This helps generate buzz around your brand’s content. You can reach users who are interested in your industry or offerings, avoiding crowded timelines that constantly update and bury your posts.

For instance, an analytics company may create, moderate and promote a group about data mining. Not only does this give the company another method of engaging target audiences, but it furthers branding efforts.

That’s because, in the eyes of group members, the company aligns itself with images of research and analysis.

10. Join Chats

Similar to groups and communities, Twitter chats let you directly engage members of your target market to create buzz around your brand’s ideas, opinions and content.

Use a chat’s hashtag to interact with industry players — ranging from prospects to other businesses. You’ll likely build your follower count as you answer questions and interact with fellow participants.

Twitter Chats - 15 Social Media Branding Strategies

This type of direct conversation and engagement allows you to demonstrate expertise and helps build brand reputation among active industry voices.

11. Avoid Platforms Unpopular with Your Audiences

You may waste time and resources attempting to engage audiences on each major social network, as your target audiences may not be active on all of them.

LinkedIn may not be ideal for brands that target teens and young adults, whereas Snapchat likely won’t yield noticeable results for B2B companies.

What’s more, as developers create hyper-specific social media platforms, it may be advantageous to focus your efforts on ones that cater to your target audiences.

For example, many cosmetic surgery clinics favour niche forums over Google+ and LinkedIn:

Niche Platforms - 15 Social Media Branding Strategies

That’s why committing to a group of social platforms — slowly expanding it when appropriate — can help focus your engagement and branding tactics.

12. Promote Your Profiles Beyond Social Media

As your profiles act as engagement and branding hubs, it’s worthwhile to promote your accounts outside of social media to grow their followings.  

You can grow your social media presences by:

  • Participating in Industry Events
    • Run a booth to promote your products. Create valuable physical content to distribute. Strike up a conversation with attendees. As more people learn about your brand, you should gain more attention on social media.

  • Including Handles in Stores and on Products
    • For businesses who drive sales through physical locations, posting images of social networks lets customers know on which platforms you’re active.

By drawing offline attention to your social media profiles, your online branding tactics are likely to reach more users.

13. Offer Users More than They Expect

The bulk of users solely expect to receive status updates, albeit ones with original content, as they follow your social accounts. But offering perks can work to strengthen brand image.

For example, send a private message to new followers that contains a free coupon. It can use your brand slogan, colours and general information, encouraging them to visit your store or website.

They’ll be exposed to more branding tactics — whether physical or online — as a result.

Perhaps most importantly, giving customers more than what they expect influences them to link your brand to a positive experience.

Ongoing Analysis

As with any marketing activity, you must regularly analyze your social media branding efforts to ensure to your tactics are working. Otherwise, you lack insight into your performance.

The worst case scenario? You devote countless hours and a sizeable part of your budget to strategies that don’t yield desirable results.

The best case scenario? Your strategies effectively establish a brand identity, yet you ignore data that can help further establish this identity at a faster rate.

These two scenarios depict why ongoing analysis is crucial to successful branding on social media.

14. Monitor Constantly

Enacting a social media monitoring strategy helps ensure you don’t miss opportunities to build brand identity.

For example, as consumers may forget to tag you or misspell your handle, you can monitor company-related keywords to pick up on their posts and strike up a conversation.

Tracking industry keywords can also uncover engagement opportunities and openings to discuss your business.

Social Media Monitoring - 15 Social Media Branding Strategies
This Twitter live-stream sample is from a Keyhole real-time tracker.

This is beneficial for both branding and public relations because it opens doors to resolve issues and answer questions, exemplifying your business’s positive characteristics.

Finding these opportunities should accelerate your social media brand-building efforts.

15. Measure Your Efforts

Measuring social statistics such as reach and engagement can help refine aspects of your branding strategy.

Assume that using specific hashtags is a key part of promoting your initiatives and products. However, you discover that few users search for — and view posts containing — these hashtags.

Likewise, checking ad performance statistics may reveal they’re not reaching target audiences.

Word of your brand may not be spreading quickly enough as a result.

By measuring these social tactics either manually or with a tool, you can determine if it’s worthwhile to alter your strategies to build brand recognition among prospects more effectively.

Final Thoughts About these Social Media Branding Strategies

It’s important for digital marketers to ensure their activities — ranging from influencer campaigns to active social media monitoring — help establish a clear brand identity.

This means you shouldn’t post for the sole intention of getting shares and winning followers. Instead, think about how your actions can support brand goals and perception.  

The shares and followers will come as you work to build a unique reputation that resonates with your target audience.


Keyhole is a real-time conversation tracker that provides keyword and hashtag analytics for Twitter and Instagram. Get started for free.

20 Social Media Tools: Automation to Save Time and Outperform Competitors

Use social media tools to automate some of your tasks. 

Not only will you be able to do everything and then some, but you’ll also be able to have an even bigger impact on social media than you are having right now, and do it in less time. 

There’s always so much to do in a day as a social media manager. 

You’ve got to create social media posts, design graphics, post content across ALL of your platforms, see who liked your previous content, respond to the angry client on Facebook, find out who is talking about you and update your boss on how everything is working out. 

Don’t you wish you had a few extra hours in your day?

Your stress levels are rising. Something needs to get pushed back but everything seems important.

Automation allows you to write and design your content in advance and schedule it to share at a later date.

By automating some social media tasks, you’ll be able to complete and schedule your work at one go and eliminate the tedious, manual busywork.

Jump Links:

Benefits of Automation

Quick Tips on How to Use Social Media Automation

What Metrics To Automate

20 Social Media Tools for Automation

Social Media Scheduling Tools
1. Buffer
2. Hootsuite
3. Tailwind
4. CoSchedule
5. MeetEdgar

Social Media Analytics Tools:
6. Twitter Analytics
7. Facebook Analytics
8. Keyhole

Content Creation and Curation Tools:
9. BuzzSumo
10. Scoop.it
11. Pocket

Social Media Monitoring Tools:
12. Sprout Social
13. AgoraPulse
14. Google Alerts
15. Falcon.io

Social Media Tracking Tools:
16. SocialFlow
17. Socialert
18. Brand24
19. Mention
20. Meltwater

Benefits of Automation

Forget the naysayers who claim that your automated content will be penalized. According to a study by Buffer, posts from third-party tools do not receive less engagement than natively posted posts.

It’s also not true that automated social media marketing is impersonal because it takes a personal touch to write your messages and design the visuals you’ll share. 

That said, there are plenty of benefits to social media automation, including:

  • More control over your accounts
    • Social media tools give you better control of your social media accounts. You are able to control the kind of content to be shared, when and how often. You are also able to post more content on multiple platforms with more ease. 
  • Saves you time
    • The biggest benefit of automation is that it saves you A LOT of time. Instead of spending hours on end curating content and posting it manually on individual platforms. Automation tools enable you to share content to multiple platforms at the same time from one dashboard. 

Quick Tips on How to Use Social Media Automation

Once you start implementing social media automation and the use of social media tools, keep a flexible schedule.

Leave room for timely updates that cannot be scheduled ahead of time. Automation does not mean that you should never do ad-hoc posts. 

Another important tip to keep in mind is timing.

While you’re free to schedule your posts to go out anytime you want, consider the time your audience is most active on each platform. This will ensure that your content gets optimal engagement. 

Once you have an automation system going, monitor and then evaluate it.

Use analytics to see how your content performed since you started automating it. This way, you’ll know how to tweak your automation process.  

Lastly, not everything should be automated. It’s still important to have meaningful conversations with your users and this cannot be achieved via automation. Such conversations have to be done in real-time. 

What Metrics to Automate

As mentioned, not everything should be automated. So what should you automate?

1. Content Curation and Creation

Sharing relatable third-party content is part of a successful social media strategy. However, finding the right content can take up all your time. 

Automating your content curation process will make it easy to find current content and post it consistently. 

2. Non-Urgent Social Media Posts

Not every content that you have needs to be posted immediately. Think about your evergreen blog posts, quotes, retweets, and third-party content. These can be shared at any time. So feel free to schedule them.

3. Your RSS feeds

Automate your RSS feed to keep sharing your new blog content as soon as it is posted. However, remember to keep an eye on comments and reply to them in person. 

In addition, DO NOT automate other people’s RSS feeds as you might end up sharing content that is irrelevant to your brand or promote other people’s products. 

4. Social Media Leads

You don’t need to manually collect every lead you get from your social media marketing efforts. You can automate this process and save yourself some time that you can use to follow up with the leads collected. 

5. Analytics

To know the value of the effort spent on social media marketing you need reports showing how your platforms performed over a given period of time.

Trying to generate these reports manually can be an uphill task. Instead, use a social media reporting tool to do it.

6. Social Listening

It’s important to know who is talking about your brand online and what they are saying. It’s near impossible to manually find every mention of your brand. There are tools, however, that are specially designed to do this. 

20 Social Media Tools for Automation

Successful automation depends on using the best tools available. There are thousands of automation tools available but not every one of them will be best for you.

To guide you on what tools to use, let’s take a look at the best tools for each of the social media tasks that you should be automating. 

Social Media Scheduling Tools

1. Buffer

Buffer is a popular social media scheduling tool. 

It allows you to schedule your posts across Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and Pinterest. 

You can have a preset schedule and your posts will be added to it automatically when you create them on Buffer. 

2. Hootsuite

Hootsuite is another powerful yet simple to use, content scheduling tool. 

Hootsuite is best for scheduling posts in advance on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. 

The tool has an added analytics tool that enables you to measure content engagement, so you understand how your content is performing.

3. Tailwind 

Creating Instagram and Pinterest posts on the go can be quite consuming. Tailwind is by far one of the best tools to use for your Instagram and Pinterest posts. 

You can use it to pin multiple boards on Pinterest at once, bulk upload, and schedule posts. 

Its drag-and-drop calendar makes scheduling content very easy.

4. CoSchedule

CoSchedule makes social media scheduling on different social media platforms easy allowing you to manage multiple accounts stress-free. 

You can schedule over 60 posts at once on CoSchedule. You can also use it to directly answer queries from its interface.

5. MeetEdgar

MeetEdgar allows you to build a library of content that you can share across different platforms. The tool then automatically schedules it for you—including repeat posts. 

Better still, it will write variations of your posts to keep things fresh.

Social Media Analytics Tools

6. Twitter Analytics

You have access to Twitter Analytics as long as you have a Twitter profile. 

This free tool allows you to measure the performance of your Twitter marketing campaign

It will show you how many likes, comments, and retweets your tweets get. This way, you are able to see how people interact with your content and adjust your campaign accordingly.

7. Facebook Analytics

Facebook Analytics comes with your Facebook account. It’s a simple free tool that allows you to see how people are interacting with your Facebook content. 

It also goes further to show you who these people interacting with your content are and where they are. This enables you to create content that is targeted and most relevant to your top fans. 

8. Keyhole

Keyhole allows you to monitor hashtag campaigns, keyword tracking, account tracking, and mentions.

You can view your brand or campaign’s performance on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube in an in-depth visual representation. 

In addition to monitoring your social media performance, you can also monitor sentiments around your brand. You also get to monitor your competition and compare your brand accounts and campaigns against major competitors.

Content Creation and Curation Tools

9. Buzzsumo

Want to find out what is currently trending? Use Buzzsumo

Buzzsumo makes it easy to search for viral and trendy topics related to your industry. Simply use a relevant keyword to automate your research. 

You can filter the results on the basis of location, industry, platform, etc.

Buzzsumo is also a great tool to find social media influencers

10. Scoop.it

Use Scoop.it to curate content from other sources and then add your opinion and share it on your platforms with the push of a button. 

It has a smart content calendar that you can use to publish your own posts as well as the content you curate.

11. Pocket

Think of Pocket as Pinterest for content. 

It is a free Chrome extension that allows you to save any content you come across on the web. 

You have access to the content you save in your Pocket account anytime and anywhere, at your convenience. You can even access it on your phone through its iOS or Android app.

Social Media Monitoring Tools

12. Sprout Social

Sprout Social is an all-in-one social media marketing tool that makes it easy to coordinate and delegate tasks to team members.

In addition to helping you curate and create content, you can use it to schedule, analyze and monitor your content. 

13. AgoraPulse

AgoraPulse has both basic scheduling and analytics features to help you schedule posts and create reports. 

It also allows you to run contests, quizzes, and promotions and measure how they performed. 

In addition, you can see how your social media marketing campaign measures up against your competitors.

14. Google Alerts

Google Alerts is a really good basic monitoring solution.

The tool scans through the web and sends you alerts whenever your brand or product gets mentioned. 

You can choose which sources you want to be alerted on such as blogs, news sites or forums.

15. Falcon.io

Falcon.io is another great social listening, customer engagement, content marketing and audience management tool.

It supports all the major social media such as Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn and Twitter. Using it will help you stay on top of your trends. 

You can use this tool to monitor influencers and directly engage with them. 

Social Media Tracking Tools

16. SocialFlow

Want to monitor your brand as the bigwigs do? Use SocialFlow

SocialFlow is a favourite of big brands like The Washington Post, Mashable, and National Geographic.

This tool tracks conversations in real-time and gathers insight on your behalf. With these insights, you’re able to tell the content that works and the best time to share it. 

17. Socialert

Socialert makes social media listening effortless and comes with tons of added features.

Use this tool to track hashtags and keywords on a real-time basis. It will alert you whenever a particular keyword is mentioned. 

This way, you’re able to collect user-generated content, perform brand monitoring, find industry-related influencers, and so much more.

18. Brand24

Brand24 shows you all the instances your brand has been mentioned anywhere on the internet.

You also get to see the mentions from your niche and competitors helping to know how you stack up against your competition.

The tool can also help you identify and reach out to influencers within your industry so that you can strike a good relationship with them and help your business gain more visibility. 

You can also use Brand24 to track hot or relevant discussions, topics, and trends so you can have fresh content ideas. 

19. Mention

Mention ensures that you never miss a conversation on social media. 

The tool lists all your brand mentions instantly on your dashboard. This gives you a good opportunity to conduct brand monitoring, competitor analysis, and so on. 

A good added feature is the ability to use it to get in touch with your customers and resolve their queries on the go.

20. Meltwater

Meltwater allows you to track brand mentions, monitor campaigns and keep abreast of critical conversations about your brand on social media.

This tool helps you listen to relevant social media conversations. With this kind of information, you can then make intelligent marketing decisions. 

Additionally, you can also use Meltwater to schedule posts to publish later.

Are you ready to automate?

Social media automation is an important social media marketing process that is sure to save you time in 2020.

But it’s not merely a set and forget strategy.

You still need to make time to regularly visit your social media accounts and engage with your audience– this is what it means to be truly social.

Let these social media tools do repetitive work for you and free up your time for more meaningful social interactions!


Keyhole is a real-time conversation tracker that provides keyword and hashtag analytics for Twitter and Instagram. Get started for free.

16 Social Listening Strategies to Incorporate Into Your Business Strategy [+2 tools!]

16 Ways to Incorporate Social Listening Into Your Business Strategy - Banner

Updated on February 11th, 2020.

With 3.03 billion active social media users around the world, you can use social listening to tune in and monitor what your customers are saying about your business across a variety of platforms. 

This allows you to listen to your customer base, learn more about them and interact with them. 

You can also identify possible new customers, and learn more about your industry or competitors. 

Social listening needs to be actionable. To use it to your advantage, you need to make the most out of conversations that happen about your brand and industry. 

Jump Links

16 Social Listening Strategies:
1. Develop Leads by Pinpointing Prospects
2. Develop Leads through Dissatisfied Competitor Customers
3. Learn Your Audience’s Language
4. Identify Influencers
5. Find Feedback
6. Start Conversations with Users Who Don’t Tag You
7. Keep Tabs on Industry News and Developing Trends
8. Track and Measure the Results of Social Campaigns
9. Discover New Audience Spaces
10. Answer Indirect Questions
11. Monitor Competitor Content
12. Create Customer and Prospect Personas
13. Research and Develop
14. Detect and Mitigate Issues Before they Escalate
15. Send Bottom-of-the-Funnel Customers to Gated Free Trials, Product Pages, or Waiting Lists
16. Refer Top-of-the-Funnel Customers to Ungated Content

2 Social Listening Tools to Grow Your Business

Here are 16 social listening strategies you can incorporate to grow your business and 2 tools to execute your strategy:

1. Develop Leads by Pinpointing Prospects

By tracking a range of terms, you can reveal users in your target market who may not know about your business.

To locate potential customers, track keywords and hashtags related to your niche that reflect:

  • Trade publications
  • Common practices
  • Issues in your sector
  • Leading figures and products

It can take between seconds and days to find posts containing your terms, depending on the social scale of your business and industry. Regardless, consider users who post with those terms as prospects.

The next step involves putting your social media sales hat on. Join the conversation by replying to them.

For example, give your opinion about a trend or send the prospect to a relevant page on your website.

This can earn you a fan and generate interest in your brand. The user may engage with you in the future or explore your website and eventually convert.

2. Develop Leads through Dissatisfied Competitor Customers

With similar tactics, you can find users eager to try new products and services.

Instagram Unhappy - 15 Ways to Grow Your Business Through Social Listening and a List of 3 Tools

Track your competitors’ usernames, brand hashtags and product names to locate prospects who may be tired of their services.

Along with these terms, monitor negative keywords such as:

  • Not
  • Can’t
  • Won’t
  • Doesn’t

Depending on your social media monitoring tool, this can be done by typing the following into the search function:

“competitor name” AND “negative keyword”

As you identify unhappy customers, ask them what they’re looking for in an ideal product. If you can meet their needs, link them to a demo, discount or free trial.

But remember, they’re upset. Use gentle language and don’t force a reply from them.

3. Learn Your Audience’s Language

Effectively marketing a product through content such as ads and landing pages involves speaking the audience’s language.

This is largely because it shows you understand their common train of thought. As a result, you can better communicate with them.

As you study posts that use your tracked keywords, you may notice that members of your market:

  • Phrase concepts in a specific way
  • Use common secondary keywords
  • Write simple, complex or somewhere-in-between sentences

Without compromising clarity, implement the findings in your content.

Unconvinced it’ll make a difference? Run a landing page A/B test using your writing style versus an adjusted style that uses your audience’s diction.

Go forward based on the winning conversion rate.

READ: The Marketer’s Guide to Writing Click-Worthy Headlines

4. Identify Influencers

As brands turn to popular online personalities to post about their products, social listening is becoming a viable way to identify influencers.

To find social media thought leaders in your niche, track the URLs and titles of:

  • Popular blog posts
  • Authoritative case studies
  • Content from industry-leading blogs and publications

You then need to determine who’s earning the highest engagement rate when sharing this material.

Use this simple formula to calculate engagement rate:

engagement rate formula

After you identify influencers, reach out to them by pitching your campaign idea. Explain how they’ll benefit and then ask for their participation.

5. Find Feedback

Tracking your brand and product names can uncover customer feedback across niche and popular social platforms.

Combined with positive and negative terms, such as “does” and “doesn’t,” you can locate reviews, complaints and endorsements.

As customers post positive comments, ask to use them as testimonials on your website, and make an effort to repost or retweet positive feedback.

This is a great strategy because it reminds your followers of the awesomeness of what you’re selling, and will likely interest new leads who happen to hear others raving about you.

Money saving app Piggybank does a great job at this. They repost the positive reviews they get from Twitter right on their Instagram page.

Image of Sam Hart tweeting about 'Saving Violently' using Piggybank

Since consumers resonate more easily with reviews from fellow consumers than from ads sent out by brands, Piggybank’s happy customers see fit to testify to the customer review Piggybank posted…

Image of Sam Hart tweeting about 'Saving Violently' using Piggybank

And there are also bottom-of-the-funnel customers asking how to get started; here’s one:

Image of Piggybank linking signup

On the flip side, you can also find negative feedback or comments through social listening.

But what you do after getting bad reviews is what matters the most.

It can be overwhelming to take note of every single piece of negative feedback, but the trick is to find the public embarrassments your company can do something about and handle the situation with finesse and style that impresses onlookers.

For example, JetBlue got a tweet from a customer who was complaining about being on a flight that had a bad headphone jack and a malfunctioning TV.

Image of cutomer tweeting to JetBlue

JetBlue responded with what clearly looks like more than just an apology; they offered to compensate the customer with a $15 credit for the inconvenience (once she can confirm she’s the actual customer who had the experience).

6. Start Conversations with Users Who Don’t Tag You

If you only pay attention to your direct mentions on platforms such as Twitter and Instagram, you can miss chances to connect with prospects and nurture leads.

As well as not tagging you, it’s common for users to:

  • Misspell your name when trying to tag you
  • Talk about your products or services without mentioning your business
  • Misspell those products and services, too

The solution is to monitor the names of your business, products and services, along with their common incorrect spellings.

For the latter, type the names into your phone. Note any autocorrects and create social listening trackers with your tool of choice. You can also think up misspellings on your own.

7. Keep Tabs on Industry News and Developing Trends

Monitoring the social web for news and trends can provide topics to post and blog about, keeping your content marketing strategy fresh.

To stay on top of what’s relevant, track keywords and usernames for big players and authoritative publications in your sector.

A tool like Keyhole can help you track other accounts, hashtags, or keywords.

Along with these keywords, monitor standard news terms such as:

  • Breaking
  • Developing
  • Trending

Depending on your social listening software, you can do this by typing a news term and publication name into the search function:

“breaking” AND “Wall Street Journal”

As you collect data about news and trends, your business can demonstrate expertise by creating and promoting articles that explain a story’s background issues.

READ: How to Build, Run and Grow a Successful Company Blog [Douglas Karr Interview]

8. Track and Measure the Results of Social Campaigns

This may seem like a moot point to some, but many marketers don’t track social media campaigns run by rivals, role models or even their own brands.

Since many social listening tools have analytics suites, you can collect data surrounding hashtag campaigns on Twitter, Instagram and other platforms.

Beyond tracking performance, this data is useful for:

  • Setting goals for future campaigns
  • Analyzing which demographics within your target audience were most active, tailoring upcoming ads and content toward them

Another simple way to collect valuable data is to share your content using custom short URLs in place of generic short links.

By doing this, you’ll be able to collect click data at its source, giving you the ability to analyze your content’s performance, easily identify which types of content your audience engages with most and set a strong social media strategy going forward.

9. Discover New Audience Spaces

A multi-channel social listening strategy can reveal audience activity on platforms you didn’t know about.

You may uncover conversations surrounding trends, competitors and even your business by searching through different forums, communities and social sites.

For example, people thinking about cosmetic surgery may not take to Twitter to express their concerns. Instead, niche forums are more common:

Cosmetic Surgery - 15 Ways to Grow Your Business Through Social Listening and a List of 3 Media Monitoring Tools

As you discover platforms that audience members frequent, read their posts to gain more insights about their needs, desires and pain-points.

READ: 10 Mistakes that Keep Your Key Social Metrics from Growing

10. Answer Indirect Questions

Answering questions isn’t always a way to overtly promote your business. Rather, it introduces you to prospects and helps build rapport.

You’ll inevitably stumble upon queries as you track brand and industry keywords.

For example, if you make task managers, you’ll likely find questions about prioritization and project management. You can respond by giving an answer or link to a relevant blog post.

Task Manager - 15 Ways to Grow Your Business with Social Media Monitoring and 3 Tools List

It’s less common for people to ask for task manager recommendations. But when that time comes, feel free to make the case for your product.

11. Monitor Competitor Content

Monitoring how a competitor’s content performs on social media can help you develop blog ideas and tactics.

Since you likely share an audience with opposing businesses, content that works well for them can work well for you.

Start by tracking a content piece’s URL and title. Depending on your tool, this should generate engagement data – how many times it’s been shared and by whom. You may also see opinions and conversations about the piece.

Use these insights by:

  • Seeing which issues and pain points resonate with your audience
  • Modeling posts, studies and infographics off popular content
  • Reaching out to users when sharing your similar material you’ve made

Keyhole allows you to monitor competitor content such as their accounts and hashtags.

12. Create Customer and Prospect Personas

Analyzing the profiles of users who post with your monitored terms is a way to build buyer personas – representations of customer groups to help you understand your target markets.

First, make a spreadsheet and fill it with the profile URLs of people who use your brand-specific keywords and hashtags. Second, once you’re comfortable with the size your list, look at each profile for information about:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Position
  • Industry
  • Business size and scope
Buyer Persona - 15 Ways to Grow Your Business Through Social Listening and a List of 3 Tools

Third, sort the profiles into groups based on this data. You may be surprised to learn which kinds of people make up your social audience.

Understanding who you’re communicating with should boost clicks and engagements as you craft messages and campaigns.

13. Research and Develop

You can think up ideas worth investigating by sifting through social listening reports, such as:

  • Creating new services or products
  • Launching events or campaigns your audience would likely enjoy
  • Altering brand positioning based on what consumers say about your and the competition

Depending on your organization’s structure, putting these ideas into action could involve collaborating with a different department or the team member beside you.

Regardless, uncovering them starts by tracking broad industry terms.

For example, if you’re a marketer for an analytics brand, you might monitor “metrics” and “social data.” You’ll eventually see someone express a need or desire. Reach out if you can already solve their pain point.

If not, consider taking the necessary steps to do so.

14. Detect and Mitigate Issues Before they Escalate

DKNY Crisis - 15 Ways to Grow Your Business Through Social Media Monitoring and List of 3 Tools
With its social listening strategy, DKNY reacted to this Facebook crisis within four hours.

Monitoring brand and industry keywords can inform you when concerns and problems develop, helping you quickly react.

Let’s say you’re in the software business. One day, you notice someone tweeting about a significant error.

You would immediately try to replicate that error, and:

  • If you can replicate it, try to fix it. Then, reach out to the user to explain it’s on the mend.
  • If you can’t replicate it, show your concern. Tweet with the user and ask for more information.

What’s the value of a speedy reaction?

Consumers expect you to swiftly address problems in the age of social media. To see why, read about Domino’s Pizza employees filming themselves ruining ingredients.

A slow, or non-existent, reaction can push customers away and damage your reputation.

15. Send Bottom-of-the-Funnel Customers to Gated Free Trials, Product Pages, or Waiting Lists

Bottom-of-the-funnel consumers are also always lurking around conversations about your industry, brand, or specific product.

These people have heard about your brand before.

And they’re ready to buy. They just need a few questions answered.

So they ask questions like “Is there a version that will include xyz feature coming soon?” OR “Can your product do this specific thing?” If you’re keeping tabs on conversations in your industry, you’ll be able to pull these prospects into the fold.

In 2017, Audi had a tweet where a prospective buyer (Godwin) asked if they had any new upgrades on a couple of their cars.

Audi responded saying the feature is coming in 2018, and sent the buyer a link where he could sign up with them to get updated once it’s out.

Image of Audi's tweet to the buyer

Once the buyer clicks the link, Audi sends him to a well-designed landing page where he’s being welcomed as a lead. The car brand gets his info and gets the chance to alert him once his desired feature is out in the market.

This means while Audi is responding to Godwin with a signup form to fill, there are probably other potential buyers around who have the same question Godwin asked and would sign up to get updates from Audi as well — via the same page Audi sent to Godwin.

This way, Audi is using social listening as a tactic to generate more leads for their new car upgrade coming in 2018.

It’s a powerful social listening strategy to monitor these industry interactions and earn the opportunity to convert bottom-of-the-funnel prospects into actual paying buyers.

And if, like Audi, you don’t already have the feature or exact product a potential buyer is asking for, have a well-designed page ready to convert the person into a lead — so you have the opportunity to draw them back to your business when it’s time.

16. Refer Top-of-the-Funnel Customers to Ungated Content

Top-of-the-funnel customers are also lurking around.

There’s always someone hearing about your brand or product for the first time, or seeing conversations about your brand or industry.

Unlike those on the bottom-of-the funnel, these people aren’t ready to buy anything.

They only want to learn more about the matter being discussed — your product, brand or industry.

You can refer these customers to a piece of content, a handy tool, or any value that answers their questions and get them ready to buy.

Audi, in the example above, sent ready-to-buy prospects right from social interactions to a gated page; should you do the same for top-of-the-funnel customers? Not quite.

Picture this for a moment: you go to Twitter and find a promoted tweet that interests you. The tweet is from a brand you’ve never seen or heard of before, promoting a product you don’t entirely understand.

So you’re curious. You want to learn more about about what’s being promoted. You reply the tweet asking “How do I get started?”

To which the brand replies, “Go to [this url] to learn how to get started.”

Would you click or not? You probably would. After all, you’re the one looking for answers.

But upon arrival on the page, you find a form asking for your personal information.

Would you give your information just to learn more about a product? You probably won’t. Especially when you’re just trying to see how to get started with a product.

If you were ready to get started, that’s a different case, you’d sign up. But gating a page that’ll teach you how to get started? Not ideal.

So it’s best to make your tool, content or any other value ungated for people who just want to “learn more”.

2 Social Listening Tools to Grow Your Business

A great social monitoring tool will analyze the most engaging posts about your brand, alert you when influencers talk about you or identify possible influencers, as well as indicate when a keyword or topic you’re tracking is being buzzed about on social platforms.

Here are 2 social listening tools that do all of the above.

1. Keyhole

Keyhole monitors real-time and historical data around URLs, hashtags, keywords and usernames on Twitter and Instagram.

A screenshot of Keyhole's social listening tracker.

By inputting up to five terms in this social listening tool’s search function, it will generate and track metrics such as:

  • The number of posts and people using your terms
  • User demographic information, including gender and location
  • Top posts, based on engagement data such as shares and replies
  • Influence data, such as which users are drawing the most attention to your tracked terms

In a shareable and printable dashboard, it displays this data in tables, timelines, pie charts and bar graphs.

Price: Starts at $179 USD; advanced plans vary

READ: Forbes Uses Keyhole to Track and Rank SXSW Hashtags

2. Talkwalker

Talkwalker tracks real-time and historical data surrounding keywords, taking data from almost all major social platforms. It also monitors blogs, forums and online news websites for keyword mentions.

For Twitter and Facebook, it provides analytics such as:

  • Engagement rate
  • Activity levels, including the times when users post with a given keyword
  • Share of voice, which is a calculation of how much a user or brand is contributing to online conversations about your keyword

You can use Talkwalker as a traditional media monitoring tool, too. It tracks keywords on global TV, radio and newswires.

Price: Starts at $800 USD per month; advanced plans vary


Whether people are having conversations directly about your brand, your industry, or your competitors, there’s a constant information exchange at high volumes.  

Social listening can contribute greatly to your business’s growth in a variety of different ways. 

You need to keep listening and monitoring to inform your social media and business strategies.

Keyhole is a real-time conversation tracker that provides keyword and hashtag analytics for Twitter and Instagram. Get started for free.

Social Media Trends to Track in 2020 and Beyond: Marketing Tools, Content, and Strategy

Predicting the future of social media trends isn’t easy, but that’s precisely what makes it so much fun! 

For example, Facebook was expected to lose its overall social media dominance. Yet, it’s 2020, and Facebook still remains the most widely used social media platform.

At Keyhole, social media is our bread and butter, and our team here works hard to stay up to date with all the key social media trends. 

We have a good idea of where social media trends are headed in 2020. And best of all…

… we don’t mind sharing our secrets.

Jump Links:

Social Media Trends:

1. Content is (Still) King
2. Visual Content Continues to Dominate
3. Influencer Marketing is Still Going Strong
4. Customer Service is More Important than Ever
5. Things Are Changing

The Top Social Media Tools to Consider in 2020:

1. Keyhole
2. Kicksta
3. Audiense
4. AgoraPulse
5. Meet Edgar

Here are the trends to keep an eye on in 2020 and some relevant social media tips and tricks to help you navigate your digital journey better. 

1. Content is (Still) King

Social media platforms continue to update their algorithms in order to show the most relevant content to social media users. 

Sure, you can pay for some extra exposure, but ads can only do so much for you. The only way you can retain visitors and turn people who stumbled upon your content into prospects is by providing them with enough value.

Here are three things to keep in mind in 2020:

1. Choose Your Platform Strategically

Choosing the right social media platform is more difficult than it seems, and more important than what you might initially think. 

It’s essential that you understand the function of each platform, so that you know which one suits you best. 

Let’s say you’re running a food blog, and your content revolves around posting recipes and food images. 

You wouldn’t choose Twitter to be your main platform now, would you? 

You’d probably opt for Instagram, as it provides a neat balance between image focus and shorter text descriptions (e.g. you could post an image of your cooked meal, and provide the recipe below). 

Suggested read: Writing Instagram Captions that Convert: Content, Formatting, and Hashtags

2. Repurpose Content… The Right Way

Besides understanding each platform and choosing the right one(s) for your brand, skip cross-posting the same content as much as you can.

Yes, you read that right!

Posting the exact same content across all the platforms you’re using makes you look lazy, non-creative and repetitive. 

We’re not saying that you can’t repurpose content (in fact, you should!), but each social media platform has its own audience, content strategy, as well as different areas of focus and specific writing styles.

Something that works well on Facebook may turn out to be a complete disaster or come across as unprofessional if you publish it on Linkedin. 

Here are some great pieces on repurposing content that might help you get started: 10 Ways To Repurpose Content For Social Media and Ins and Outs of Repurposing Content for Social Media Posts.

If you aren’t sure how to approach this, you can always hire a social media expert to guide you. 


3. Stay Consistent

Let’s not forget about consistency.

Imagine you were posting Instagram stories on a daily basis, communicated regularly with your followers, and you suddenly disappear for a month without notice to your followers, only to re-appear because you’d like to promote your newly published recipe ebook. 

News flash: you’re neither getting the recognition you want, nor stepping up your marketing trends game. 

People appreciate continual effort – that’s when you receive continuous validation.

2. Visual Content Continues to Dominate

The focus on visual content is needed now more than ever.

Using visual content improves overall marketing trends, and it can do wonders for your social media engagement. 

Don’t just take our word for it – take a minute and consider the following visual content statistics:

  • 90% of information transmitted to the brain is visual, and visuals are processed 60,000X faster in the brain than text. 
  • 40% of people will respond better to visual information than plain text.
  • Publishers who use infographics grow in traffic an average of 12% more than those who don’t.
  • Pinterest generates more referral traffic for businesses than Google+, YouTube, and LinkedIn combined.  

Convinced already? 

Visual content is a breath of fresh air in an otherwise monotonous and quantity-driven content production. 

Making visuals part of your everyday social media strategy can truly change the way customers perceive you and your brand. 

And with the availability of visual tools today, it’s easier than ever!

The downside is, with such a vast number of visual tools to choose from, it can be tricky to pick the right one. 

The best option is to use several visual strategies that fit your brand’s needs and that you feel comfortable with.

If you’re using Instagram, don’t skip IGTV; if you’re frequently posting on Facebook, don’t just post images or longer texts, post infographics as well as image quotes. Iif you’re on YouTube, go live every so often!

Suggested Read: Incorporating Memes, Emojis, and Gifs Into Your Social Strategy for Higher Engagement

Yes, users appreciate consistency and continual work and efforts, but they cherish spontaneity too! 

Visuals You Can Use on Your Social Media Platforms

  • Images (both customized and stock) 
  • Videos (both live and recorded) 
  • Screenshots
  • GIFs
  • Memes
  • Pie charts 
  • Quotes (placed on customized images)

Visual content adds value to your written content, helps increase engagement, and provides a more meaningful user experience. 

Suggested Read: 10 Mistakes in Your Visual Content Strategy [+ Tools to Fix Them!]

Incorporating visuals in your strategy can be challenging, but visuals resonate with current marketing trends and they simply are what users prefer. 

Just put yourself in their shoes for a second – would you enjoy any social media platform without  visual variety or image originality? 

People want what’s pleasing to the eye. Your task is to give them what they want. 

3. Influencer Marketing is Still Going Strong

Contrary to popular belief, influencer marketing isn’t dead. In fact, influencer marketing is expected to become a $5-$10 billion industry by 2020. Well, guess what? It’s 2020 already! 

The whole point of influencer marketing is to find influencers suitable for your brand so that they can promote it for you. And this is the key thing when starting your influential marketing campaign – to find the proper influencer(s). 

Don’t get carried away by the number of followers an influencer has, or what they’ll demand as compensation (some pay influencers, or give them a free product, others may do both).

It’s not that these things are irrelevant, it’s just that there’s much more to it. 

Suggested Read: Using Hashtags to Find Influencers on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook

For example, what if an influencer that you’re considering to propose a collaboration to, has been known to collaborate with competitors, or tends to promote and accept EVERYTHING that is offered to them?

Do you think this would make your brand be recognized, valued or appreciated? 

Or imagine contacting a well-known food blogger – this is obviously someone who frequently posts food images, visits different restaurants and writes reviews on different meals.

But, you’re selling athletic wear and you want to promote a healthy lifestyle and a proper, balanced diet. Do you believe this influencer is the right option for your brand? 

Suggested Read: How to Find Micro Influencers on Instagram to Boost Sales

Remember, influencers should help build trust in your brand, not ruin it.

In an era when influential recommendations are something users highly appreciate, making sure you find the right influencers is more important than ever. 

Besides this, make sure both you and your influencer are satisfied and happy with your collaboration. A successful influencer campaign is when both sides are satisfied with the cooperation. 

Marketing trends are called trends for a reason – they target current popularity, and can garner immediate success.

However, a carefully crafted influential strategy can bring you more satisfactory results in the long run than just complying with ongoing marketing trends. 

Suggested read: Instagram Influencer Marketing: A Start-to-Finish Guide

4. Customer Service is More Important than Ever

Social media platforms are indeed a place for you to promote your content and your brand. They’re also a place for you to interact with your customers and loyal followers. 

And this aspect is becoming much more important over the course of time. Plus, establishing communication with the people following you has never been easier. 

Make sure you read reviews and testimonials – see what people think of you/your brand; what they’d like to see more of, what they dislike, or what they’d expect from you in the future. 

Also, try to answer any messages you might be getting as well as comments – sound professional, yet friendly; approachable, and neutral. 

If you’re interacting one-on-one with a follower, always use their name when addressing them. People love hearing their name or reading their name.

It conveys a more personal tone, and makes it seem as though you’re paying extra attention to them. 

On the other hand, we’re aware you can’t do everything on your own. Even if you have a whole team behind you, you’d still need additional help if your business is expanding. 

Thankfully, chatbots are there to help you.

Did you know that 40% of consumers don’t care if a chatbot or a real human helps them, as long as they get the help they need

Source: Facebook for Business

Chatbot intelligence and algorithms are expected to grow and improve beyond what we consider imaginable.

They’re able to communicate with several people all at once, and if we’re being realistic, this isn’t something that even a whole team of customer support can surpass. 

Suggested read: Instagram Messages: How Businesses Can Engage Their Audience & Tools to Manage Your Inbox

5. Things Are Changing

If there’s one thing we’ve learned, it’s that things change. 

Fast.

And of course, in 2020 we’ll continue to see rapid change. 

So, to remain relevant, you need to embrace the unknown.

Social media platforms have a wide range of algorithms and they’re constantly upgrading, evolving and trying out new things. 

One such example is Instagram deciding to remove “likes” from its platform (they’ll remain visible for you, but others won’t be able to see them). 

Changing “the visibility of the Instagram likes” changes the overall perception of Instagram as a social media platform. This also changes how the upcoming marketing trends and strategies will resume on this platform. 

For example, up till now the relevance of posts, captions or whole accounts in general were calculated based on the number of followers and likes.

The greater the number of likes, the greater the level of validation and recognition. 

This modification changes the game now – without likes, Instagram users will have to focus on providing better content, high-quality photos as well as come up with different strategies to prove their Instagram status. 

And then there’s the rise of TikTok, the video sharing app that is quickly becoming one of the most popular apps among social media users all over the world.

Currently, TikTok’s users are mainly teens and Generation Z. However, given the app’s algorithm which doesn’t require creators to have many followers to receive lots of attention, more and more people from varying age groups are joining every day.

As the app’s popularity grows, it’s only a matter of time before brands start exploring TikTok, just like it happened with Facebook and Instagram.

This only serves to show you that you can never fully master a particular social media platform, as they’re constantly evolving. 

The greatest social media tip would be to never lose the sense of adjusting to what’s yet to come. That’s the ultimate marketing trend that never changes.

Now, let’s talk about… 

The Top Social Media Tools to Consider in 2020

Ever noticed how the appearance of new social media tools impacts which platforms we continue using, which tools we keep and which ones we completely ignore? 

As the social media world changes, the social media tools end up changing too. This in turn modifies how we perceive certain marketing trends in  general. 

Without further ado, here’s a short list of some of the most effective social media tools we suggest checking out: 

1. Keyhole

We’ve built such a comprehensive social listening and analytics tool that you’ll wish you discovered it sooner. Keyhole keeps track of the conversations on all social channels and it analyzes them. It can help you research your market, understand the impact of your campaigns and find top influencers. The best thing? A free trial. 

2. Kicksta

Best for Instagram-focused brands. It helps you build your following way faster by targeting followers of similar accounts. It also assists you in finding better partnership opportunities as well as ways to boost your sales. 

3. Audiense

A great audience segmentation tool. It analyzes and helps you to understand your audience, and enables you to create highly specific audience segments, adapt your targeting and deliver personalized messages, which is great. 

4. AgoraPulse

A great asset to your already existing social media tools. AgoraPulse helps you manage your social media presence. It gathers all your conversations in one place and helps you schedule your posts and create a winning content calendar. It allows you to create audience segments and manage your team too. 

5. Meet Edgar

A social media scheduling tool that helps you post older posts. Recycling your old killer posts increases your traffic and gets you greater exposure.

This is even more relevant if you’ve written a great piece a while ago, and in the meantime your brand has grown – it goes without saying that you’ll expose your content to more readers. 

Keep in mind that this is by no means an exhaustive list. Still, it’s a basic guide to get you started.

Final Thoughts on Social Media Trends, Tips & Tricks

People spend a great deal of time on various social media, and this is nothing new. 

Some of it is productive and with an end goal, and other times it’s just aimlessly scrolling through accounts, and randomly liking specific posts. 

Whatever their reason may be, it’s fine either way. 

What matters, however, is that now you know just the right tips and tricks to make their social media experience much more enjoyable and keep up with the ever growing competition in your industry in 2020. 


Keyhole is a real-time conversation tracker that provides social media analytics and hashtag tracking for Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and other platforms. Get started for free.

Social Listening: Best Practices For Growing Businesses

Updated on January 23rd, 2020.

More than listening to what customers are saying about your brand or industry in the social sphere, this one question is important:

What do you do with what your customers and prospects say on social media?

Jump Links:

5 Social Listening Best Practices:

1. Pick a Successful Competitor to Imitate
2. Determine When to Engage an Ongoing Conversation
3. Have Relevant Departments Go All In
4. Carefully Consider Your Choice for a Social Media Listening Tool
5. In the End, How Much is Social Listening Doing For You?

Hearing what customers say on social media is one thing, but understanding how to use their conversations to your brand’s advantage is another.

500 million tweets are sent every day. That’s ~6,000 tweets per second.

And that’s just Twitter.

A prospect could tweet something as simple as “I need a black shoe right now” and get the attention of seventy of her followers engaging with the post.

What would happen, if you as a shoe brand (for instance) chime into that conversation with a link to your black shoe — including a discount coupon?

Here are five social listening best practices that can make a huge difference in your business:

1. Pick a Successful Competitor to Imitate

When you learn from people who are already doing well, you’re in essence skipping the mistakes they made before getting to where they are today. You can avoid most of mistakes they made.

On learning from competitors, PR expert Gini Dietrich says:

“Analyze your competitors’ marketing—see which efforts work well, and understand why stakeholders like them: What is their primary messaging? Why does or doesn’t it work? How do people respond to the company’s overtures online? Is word of mouth positive or negative? Why?”

Businesses perform better at social listening when they ethically learn from competitors who are already doing it right.

Piecing together their strategy is like scoring a free cheatsheet. Visit their platforms to see how they’re doing their social media — responding to feedback, joining industry conversations, and so on.

Fashion company Topshop, for example, is a good brand to learn social listening from. And of course, there are several other brands out there that are awesome at this.

While many other fashion brands only only take advantage of world-renowned events like Valentine’s Day and Christmas, Topshop takes advantage of other smaller festivals or events — especially in entertainment and fashion space.

When conversations about #EEBAFTAs (the hashtag for British Academy Film Awards) were trending on Twitter, Topshop joined in.

Tweet of Topshop during the #EEBAFTAs

Remember, this is an event many other fashion brands don’t value as much as they do more popular events. Well, Topshop decided to participate in the conversation on Twitter and their engagement rate soared; one of their tweets with the hashtag became the most popular on their timeline.

So, when looking for brands to learn your social listening strategy from, companies like Topshop are good examples to learn from. They look at other industry-related events that most of their competitors aren’t looking at and take advantage of them.

There are hundreds or even thousands of other brands you can learn from. Do your research on brands doing social listening well in your industry and see how you can learn from them.

But what if you step into a lively conversation and get a slap in the face? You need to know when to enter an ongoing conversation on social media.

2. Determine When to Engage an Ongoing Conversation

Social media is built on conversations, and consumers want to be talked to, not sold to.

Social media marketing guru Carlos Gil put it more succinctly:

“Talk to your audience, make conversation, build relationships. Consumers are people and they don’t want to be sold to, they want to be engaged so engage them.”

But it’s not just getting into conversations with prospects that’s important, you also need to know when and when not to engage them.

Ever gotten into a conversation and then realized you shouldn’t have? Or maybe your timing was just off?

When to enter an ongoing conversation is crucial.

It determines whether or not you’ll be getting any benefits from your social listening efforts or not. It determines whether you’ll get bashed or praised for joining a conversation. Avoid regret. Pick and choose your times to engage.

Here’s a few examples of typical conversations, and how to engage them:

Customer Service Queries

Customer service related queries require your immediate response.

Customers get angry all the time for different reasons, and you want to ensure they don’t stay angry. Or they need to ask questions before buying from you.

In any case, you want to respond to customer service requests fast.

“Netflix is known for its superior online customer service. That is due in large part to a corporate culture that empowers employees to act quickly”

Rebekah Radice, Founder at RadiantLA

78% of consumers have bailed on a transaction or not made an intended purchase because of a poor service experience.

An Ongoing Conversation About a Government Policy

Trying to take advantage of a social media conversation about a government policy that hurts people is an example of a potentially bad time to enter a social media conversation (depending on your stance).

For instance, following a ban from the US president last year, people from Muslim-majority countries were banned from entering the US. Taxi companies weren’t happy about this, and so they all went down the JFK airport and stopped pickups from working.

Amidst this commotion, Uber saw it fit to join the conversation and advertise their service, in theory helping stranded passengers. The turn out was bad. #DeleteUber became a thing on the Internet with many users posting how they weren’t happy without Uber’s position on the ban:

#DeleteUber campaign.

If you’re not going to sympathize with people who find a particular policy disturbing, it’s best to stay away from conversations like this.

When to Keep Quiet or Simply Apologize

Sometimes it’s best to remain silent — when saying anything at all will make a situation bad on all sides. Depending on the vitriol being spread, you may just want to pretend you didn’t hear a thing.

A smart rule of thumb is to only get involved in conversations when you know you won’t get burned or miss out on significant benefits.

For example, these conversation scenarios are clear enough to know whether or not to chime in:

  • An angry customer is egging people on and you feel you might be baited into a fight – Do not chime it.
  • You feel tempted to speak ill of a competitor’s product. – Do not chime in.
  • You feel tempted to market your Spring bouquets on Christmas Day (making you look like an extraterrestial)- Do not chime in.
  • You will literally miss the party if you don’t get into a conversation on time — like tweeting about Valentine’s Day on February 15 – Chime in!
  • You won’t get burned for marketing your Valentine’s products on Valentine’s Day – Chime in!

These are just a few examples. Think up a few you want to avoid or join.

But it’s still not always this straightforward, right?

Sometimes it can get really dicey and you won’t be sure whether or how to respond to feedback in the sometimes volatile social arena. Everybody’s watching, remember?

And bad news travels fast.

For example, one Clayburn Griffin mentioned Cap ‘n Crunch on Twitter, saying…

Tweet about Cap'n Crunch by Clayburn Griffin

Cap ‘n Crunch probably wasn’t sure what the outcome of their clapback would be. But they took the risk anyway. As it turned out, it worked for them. Cap ‘n Crunch’s tweet clearly got more love than KFC’s.

Cap 'n Crunch's tweet at KFC

Should you do the same if you were in this situation?

Speaking about the reason for their clapback, Andrew Cunningham from Huge (which managed digital for Cap ‘n Crunch) said: “KFC came at us pretty hard, and at that point we had full license to zing them back.”

Sometimes it isn’t rocket science to know when to enter a conversation. Sometimes it is. A smart rule of thumb, however, would be to only respond to conversations that clearly CAN BE handled. And apologize when occasion demands.

Another good social listening practice is to have your social media team collaborate with relevant departments in your organization to provide accurate information.

3. Have Relevant Departments Go All In

Social media is clearly not a secondary channel for marketing anymore, it’s the main channel today.

And if that’s the case, then it’s worth having all relevant departments in your organization collaborating on it.

When an issue is brought up by a customer that your social media team doesn’t have enough expertise to handle, have them link up with the relevant departments that can provide apt feedback or information.

78% of customers say competent service reps play a huge role in a happy customer experience.

Service reps can’t be competent if they aren’t fed the right information by relevant departments. So departments in your organization need to collaborate with your social listening efforts.

Customers hate it when they reach out to your customer service via social media and don’t get a satisfactory response. Or when you tell them to send an email to get an issued solved. Nothing beats you giving them the right response right from social media where they contacted you.

“I have for 10 years—long before Facebook was even on the map—called myself a ‘relationship marketing specialist.’ And I love that term because to me it transcends the medium. It’s all about people doing business with people.”

Mari Smith, Top Facebook Marketing Expert.

And remember, it’s social media — everybody’s watching.

This doesn’t mean your programmers, finance people, and other staff need to abandon their roles all the time to respond to customer complaints on social. But they can play a huge role in assisting your social media managers with the relevant information they need.

An open communication line between the social media team and relevant departments can work wonders here.

That said, your entire social listening effort, however, is nothing without a good social monitoring tool.

4. Carefully Consider Your Choice for a Social Media Listening Tool

Social media listening tools help you analyze what’s been said about your brand and industry on social media.

There are many social media monitoring tools out there, which makes choosing the right one a challenge sometimes. But you need to find the right one for your business anyway.

An inefficient social listening tool will make your social marketing efforts unnecessarily hard and frustrating.

If, for example, your tool can’t help you sort out the different sentiments in your social mentions, it’s going to be really hard to start scrolling through the many mentions you get to get the one(s) you’re looking for.

Want to monitor sentiment analysis for the hashtag you’re tracking like this? Try Keyhole.

Social conversation monitors have different capabilities. Some provide basic functions while others offer more advanced features. You want to pick the one that offers the functions that matter to your business.

5. In the End, How Much is Social Listening Doing For You?

You need to track metrics that matter. Otherwise, it’d be all for nothing. And there are lots of things to track, but you need to spot the ones that really matter to your business.

A few things to track:

  • Sentiment: How many mentions about your brand are favourable or otherwise.
  • Popularity: How many mentions are you getting per day, week or month?
  • Influencers: Who are the influencers talking about you, how many are they and what are they saying?
  • Most engaging topics: Which topics get the most likes, replies and reposts? Knowing this will help you understand where to focus your social listening efforts.

What you do with what you’re hearing about your brand is critical in this age where it feels like social media is controlling the world. Use the strategies in this piece to make the most of what’s being said about you and your industry.


Keyhole is a real-time conversation tracker that provides keyword analysis and hashtag analytics. Get started for free and conduct social listening for your brand.

Using Twitter Advanced Search to Diversify Marketing and Increase Engagement

using twitter advanced search to diversify marketing and increase engagement

With 335 million active users, Twitter is undeniably the home of amazing opportunities, especially for brands that want to engage with their fans and followers.

From finding leads to providing customer support to free PR and media mentions, the marketing opportunities are endless. 

Before you get too excited, there’s a but. 

The more users join Twitter, the harder it gets to find these opportunities as they get mixed up with more than 500 million tweets sent each day.

Thankfully, Twitter knows its stuff! 

To help you get as much value as possible out of Twitter, the platform offers Twitter advanced search. 

This powerful tool will let you find exactly what you’re looking for without having to scroll through thousands upon thousands of tweets.  

The Twitter advanced search tool is a goldmine for marketers as well as business owners. 

In this guide, you’ll learn exactly how to use this tool as well as powerful ways that you can use it to grow your brand exponentially.

Let’s get this show on the road. 

Jump Links:

What is Twitter Advanced Search?

Why Use Twitter Advanced Search?

1. Use Keywords and Hashtags to Find Potential Customers
2. Understand Your Target Audience
3. Reputation Management
4. Find Relevant Industry Influencers
5. Keep Track of All Your Mentions
6. Be the King of Customer Service
7. Find Media Opportunities

How to Use Twitter Advanced Search:
The Parameters:
1. All of These Words
2. This Exact Phrase
3. Any of These Words
4. None of These Words
5. These Hashtags
6. Written In (Language)
7. From These Accounts
8. To These Accounts
9. Mentioning These Accounts
10. Date Range

Getting More out of Twitter Advanced Search

What is Twitter Advanced Search?

Have you found yourself looking for something on Twitter all day to no avail?

You are pretty sure that it’s in there somewhere but you’re now cross-eyed from scrolling through all those tweets. 

The advanced search tool is your saving grace. 

This tool has turned Twitter into a social search engine. The tool allows you to narrow down your search results to specific words, date ranges, people and more. 

This makes it easy to find specific tweets.   

The Twitter search tool is available when you’re logged in to twitter.com either on the mobile app or web browser, via the platform’s toolbar search field by clicking on the choosing Advanced Search. 

You can also access it directly by heading to twitter.com/search-advanced.

From here, you can use the specific parameters available to comb through billions of tweets.

Why Use Twitter Advanced Search?

Now before we get you confused with the technical aspects of Twitter Advanced Search, let’s first understand why you should be using the Twitter advanced search tool. 

1. Use Keywords and Hashtags to Find Potential Customers

With billions of people using Twitter daily, the likelihood of finding people interested in your product or service is high. But it may be difficult to find these people if you don’t have a proper way of doing it. 

One way to do this is by using keywords related to your business. These are the words that your target audience are likely to use while searching the platform for products. 

Say you sell yoga pants. You can use keywords such as ‘buy yoga pants’, ‘I need new yoga pants’ etc. You’ll then see all the people who have used these keywords in their tweets. 

Hashtags are another effective way of finding new prospects. Hashtags have really evolved since their inception and people today unconsciously use them as part of their vocabulary all the time. 

So as a yoga pants business owner you’ll be interested in popular hashtags such as #iloveyoga #yogapants #ineednewyogapants, etc. 

Once you’ve found a list of potential prospects, reach out to them, start a conversation and build a relationship with them before you sell them your products. 

2. Understand Your Target Audience

Enough emphasis cannot be placed on understanding your target audience. To reach more people you need to understand who these people are and what they want. 

Twitter’s advanced search is a great way to learn about your target audience’s likes and dislikes.

Whenever you search a related keyword you will be able to see what people are saying about products and services related to your business.

Are they excited about them? Is there a need for them? Are they complaining? Do they need more variety? 

Armed with this information, you can then craft a marketing strategy that offers them the kind of information they are craving for.

You can even go further and create the type of product or service that your target audience wants. 

The bottom line here is to understand your target audience’s needs so that you can offer them value. 

3. Reputation Management

Every brand should be aware of what people are saying about them. 

It’s important to be aware of both negative and positive talk about your brand.

Positive talk lets you know what you’re doing right so you can keep doing it. Negative talk allows you to know where you are failing so that you can do better. 

Advanced search allows you to filter tweets to just those that mention your brand. You can also use emoticons such as “:)” and “:(” when searching your brand on Twitter to find out people’s sentiments about your brand.

The emoticons will let you know which users are happy or sad whenever they’re talking about your brand. 

For best results, exclude your Twitter username from search results so that you’ll be able to see tweets that mention your brand, but haven’t tagged you directly.

4. Find Relevant Industry Influencers

Influencers are the word-of-mouth of social media. 

You most certainly want the who is who in your industry talking about your brand and your products and services. 

But how do you get to know who these influencers are?

Easy. Use the Twitter advanced search tool. 

Use hashtags to find influencers on Twitter and take your influencer marketing to the next level. 

However, not all influencers are equal. You want to use only those influencers have a direct influence on your brand. 

For instance, going back to the yoga pants example, you want to use influencers who at least have an interest in yoga pants, not just anyone who has a large following on Twitter. 

People are more likely to be interested in people who have similar interests to them. 

5. Keep Track of All Your Mentions

You’ve probably been managing with keeping track of your brand mentions via Twitter notifications. But did you know that not everyone talking about you on Twitter will take the time to tag you?

This means you are missing out on lots of information regarding what people are saying about you just because they didn’t mention your Twitter handle in their tweets. 

Search Twitter for brand mentions using queries which include your brand name, common misspellings and your website. 

6. Be the King of Customer Service

Twitter is particularly popular as the place where customers go for customer support

Long gone are the days when your first instinct would be to pick up the phone and call the company for assistance. Now we all run to social media. 

Can’t complete a purchase? Ask for help on Twitter.

Your WiFi is not working? Complain on Twitter. 

Being on top of such complaints will give you the opportunity to offer instant help before things get out of hand. It’s always good to be known as the brand that offers effective customer support in seconds. 

Find complaints and fans’ issues using advanced search queries including your Twitter handle and terms such as “help,” “support” and service. 

7. Find Media Opportunities

Journalists and PR companies are always on the lookout for brands they can use to interview or feature as case studies. They will use Twitter to find such brands. 

Media mentions can go a long way in promoting your products and services, creating brand awareness, improving your brand reputation and most importantly, it’s free advertising for your products/services, events, campaigns, etc. 

Search Twitter for such opportunities using hashtags such as “#journorequest” and “PRrequest.” Remember to include your niche or industry in your search eg. #Journorequest yoga pants.

How to Use Twitter Advanced Search

You’re already in love with the advanced Twitter search tool, right?

Now let’s get down to how to use the various parameters. 

When you first land on the Advanced Search Page you may get a little overwhelmed. 

But don’t panic, it’s not as hard as it seems. 

We’ve broken down each parameter to help you understand how to use them so that you can harness the full power of this tool. 

First things first, a quick reminder of how to access the advanced search tool: 

Enter a search term in the toolbar search field then click on the Advanced Search feature. 

click through to twitter advanced search through search filters on the right hand side of the page.

You can also access it directly by heading to twitter.com/search-advanced.

The Parameters

Twitter advanced search parameters.

1. All of These Words

The search tool will search for tweets that contain—in no particular order—all the terms you enter in this parameter. 

If you want to search for a phrase instead of individual words use quotations (e.g. “buy yoga pants”). 

This parameter is helpful when you want a broad idea of what people are saying when they use particular words.

Sometimes you may not be sure what you’re looking for, so starting broad is a good idea.

Here’s an example of a search with all of these words:

Twitter advanced search parameter: "all of these words"

As you can see, it returns results that include any or all of the search terms (buy yoga pants).

2. This Exact Phrase

If you want to search for a specific phrase, this is the best parameter to use because you don’t have to add quotations around your phrase—it does that for you. 

This parameter is great when searching for quotes or full names.

Here’s an example of an exact phrase search: 

Twitter advanced search: exact phrase search

See the difference? Results are refined to tweets with that exact phrase and not individual words as with the ‘all of these words’ parameters. 

3. Any of These Words

This parameter separates each word or phrase you enter with an “OR” when the search query is performed. 

For instance, if you want to search for brand mentions you can add your brand name, Twitter handle, hashtag and website. Twitter will then give your results containing either of these search terms. 

Here’s an example using the brand Hootsuite:

twitter advanced search: any of these words

4. None of These Words

You may not give this parameter much thought but it’s also important.

It’s very helpful if you truly want to narrow down your search results.

For instance, when searching for yoga pants, you may want to exclude results of yoga poses which are very popular. 

It’s also a good filter to add if you don’t want to see tweets that contain a competitor’s name or customized hashtag. 

5. These Hashtags

This is the parameter that you use to search for tweets using your custom hashtags or industry-related hashtags. You don’t need to add the hashtag symbol in terms listed in this field.

6. Written In (Language)

Find tweets that are written in the language of your choice. 

There’s no point in having tweet results show up in other languages if they are not applicable to your brand. 

twitter advanced search: find tweets in the language of your choice

7. From These Accounts

This parameter allows you to find tweets by specific accounts. You can add usernames of one or more accounts here with or without the “@” sign. 

This is a good parameter to include when you are monitoring your competition. 

Let’s use the Hootsuite example again. As you can see, the results are only tweets from Hootsuite. 

twitter advanced search parameter: from these accounts

8. To These Accounts

Again, if you’re monitoring your competition and want to see what people are saying about them, just enter their usernames here. 

Here, the results are all the tweets sent to Hootsuite:

twitter advanced search parameter: to these accounts

9. Mentioning These Accounts

Want to see your competition’s mentions? Enter their usernames here.

NOTE: You can find people’s emails on Twitter by searching for their usernames and the keyword “email” or phrase “email address”. 

twitter advanced search parameter: mentioning these accounts

10. Date Range

Use this parameter to search for Tweets either before or after a date. You can find tweets that are between two dates.

Getting More out of Twitter Advanced Search

While the Twitter advanced search tool does a pretty neat job to help you find the information that you’re looking for, there are still many ways to narrow down your search even more.

In addition to getting well-filtered results, you need a tool to help you organize these results into useful information.  

In doing so, you ensure that you get high-quality results that will better inform your marketing team so they’ll be able to craft an effective marketing strategy

Keyhole is an advanced social media analytics tool that will help you conduct effective social media listening, brand monitoring, influencer marketing, market research and more all from one dashboard. 

Check it out for a chance to unlock your social media potential. 

The Twitter advanced search tool is a gateway to a world of marketing opportunities for your brand. So start taking full advantage of it today and get the most out of your Twitter Advanced search queries.

Get searching!


Keyhole is a real-time conversation tracker that provides keyword and hashtag analytics for Twitter and Instagram. Get started for free.

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