Analytics, AI/ML

What Is Social Listening and Why Does It Matter?

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With the onset of the pandemic, the digital marketplace has seen an unprecedented boom in business volumes. A recent study showed that as many as 81% of all online buyers depend on social media reviews, blogs, and influencer posts to help them decide their choice of brands. This makes social listening a critical tool for any brand with a presence on the internet.

Social listening is the practice of keeping a watchful eye on brand and competitor mentions on blogs, public forums, and social media. It gives your brand an insight into customer behavior and industry trends, allowing you to strategize how best to engage and expand your customer base and business.

Brands such as Nike and Coca-Cola have teams dedicated to keeping track of industry trends and engaging with their audience on channels like Twitter and Instagram. 

While billions of conversations and posts are shared on social media every day, one might assume that social listening is a labor-intensive and complicated investment. However, today there are many solutions available in the market that can get your social listening practice off the ground. 

To start with, tools such as Brandwatch, Meltwater, and Talkwalker allow users to aggregate social media posts from millions of sites into one single data stream using Booleans. Tools such as Social Sprout and Hootsuite will enable you to track your brand mentions and engage with your audience from the convenience of a single platform. Specialist platforms such as Audience helps brands gain insight into audience behavior and support the creation of personality sketches. 

If that feels like much, you can also choose to work with a social intelligence agency like Cogent inCIghts, which uses AI, industry experts, and a team of analysts to design a custom solution for your unique business case. Such solutions save you both time and money by allowing you to focus on strategy and implementation. At the same time, the agency deals with the complexity of streamlining data from multiple platforms and unlocking actionable insights.

Why Is Social Listening Important?

  1. Social listening can deliver profound insights into your brand's marketing strategy. This data lends insight to future campaigns, uncovering customer channel preferences, sentiment, unmet needs, engagement trends, content ideas, and many more.
  2. Social listening will also enable you to measure quantitative metrics (like the number of mentions, engagement, reach, influence) and qualitative metrics (like sentiments and emotions) of your social media campaigns.
  3. Social listening gives your brand the ability to track and engage with your customers by addressing negative experiences and encouraging positivity. Customers love brands that listen.
  4. Social listening is a goldmine of insights about your brand and an excellent way for you to get competitive insights about your competition and industry. It allows you to benchmark, extract and implement best practices while uncovering unmet needs that can lead to a blue ocean opportunity.
  5. Planning product improvements, launches, and innovations is easier when you know your customers want and feel about your products and others like it in the market. Social listening makes that data available to you.

Noteworthy Stats About Social Listening 

Numbers don't lie, and here are some statistics that emphasize the use of social listening across industries.

  1. By 2025, an estimated 4.41 billion people are predicted to be active on social media. And social listening is a surefire way to feel the pulse of large audience groups.
  2. Social listening has become the most widely used tool by e-commerce companies globally to understand changes in customer preferences and behavior during the pandemic. (source:
  3. According to GlobalWebIndex, 54% of all people on social media use it as a way to research products that they're interested in buying.
  4. A survey of over 200 leading brands by SocialBakers shows that they all use social listening in some capacity.
  5. 80% of all daily customer service tweets are negative.
  6. Here's an important one: 96% of all people do not speak to brands about their negative product experience but do to an average of 15 of their friends.
  7. Among those who do reach out to brands on social media, 79% expect the brand to respond within a day. However, the response rate from brands is as low as 25%. So which one are you?

Use Case

Negative reviews can negatively reflect a restaurant, and they can also have severe financial consequences.

One of our clients in the Restaurant industry was facing a similar issue where Negative reviews were receiving significant user interaction in Google Search, resulting in the revenue crunch.  

Our  AI-Enabled software allows us to monitor comments and find keywords linking restaurants to negative or positive words and phrases. The data analytics are reviewed, and we immediately respond to negative comments and reviews by highlighting positive ones.

After analyzing, we found that 63% of the total negative reviews were associated with Italian dishes. 26% of negative reviews were related to outdoor dine-in experiences.

After these findings, the restaurant owner hired an Italian origin chef who prepared the dishes authentically.

As most customers complained about the unfavorable weather conditions while sitting outside, the restaurant owner covered the outside area with roofs that gave the restaurant a good vibe and installed heaters for a better experience.

This act helped the restaurant gain positive reviews about the food and seating ambiance and more customers, which resulted in a 3x revenue increase for the restaurant

Listen, React and Stay Ahead

Cogent inCIghts is the perfect platform to help your brand implement a social listening strategy as a part of your customer service and retention programs. Our customizable AI, robust technology stack, and highly experienced analysts will help you find scalable insights that matter. Contact us to learn more about how we can save you up to 40% in costs with insights delivered 5X faster.

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