A quick-start guide to social media marketing

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Have you ever wanted to follow what’s being said about a certain topic around the internet? Well, it’s not as hard as you think. Monitoring tools are the primary way to track buzz about a given topic online. For someone conducting an online social media marketing campaign this is especially true. To properly promote something, you have to continuously follow what people are saying about it. Monitoring tools can be broken into two primary categories:

  • Background Tracking
  • Conversation Tracking

One of the best social media monitoring tools  is Google Alerts. With Google Alerts, you can receive weekly, daily, or even “as it happens” alerts whenever your search term is mentioned on the web.

Don’t be afraid to enter multiple phrases that mention your brand; this can only yield more and diverse results. In addition to delivering relevant links to articles, blogs, video, etc., Google Alerts is also a great spring board for learning more about where your brand is being spoken about.

Probably the best feature of this service is that you don’t have to keep checking for the most recent mentions on search engines. Having the alerts delivered directly into your inbox allows you to keep tabs on where you might want to comment on a blog post or follow the development of a news story.

The major drawback about Google Alerts is that it doesn’t cover social media sites, such as facebook. To become a part of the “conversation,” you must use monitoring tools that focus on discussions, media (such as video, audio, photos, etc.), and just about anything else. If you are conducting a social media campaign, you absolutely must know if people are already talking about your brand. Sites like Twitter, Digg, and YouTube are the some of the many featured sites on Addict-o-matic, which is the site to find “the latest buzz on any topic.”

Addictomatic screenshot via flickr from Maestro Alberto's photostream

Other sites such as Daylife and Silobreaker are also great for processing recent quotes, graphs, trends, and lists of recent articles or blogs that mentions your topic.

Long gone are the days of missing what someone said about you behind your back. Utilizing effective monitoring tools will help you to truly be part of the conversation in every corner of the web.

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