3133347219_4c16658dd5_zI, and many other social media experts, have often spoken of the need to use social media to listen as much as we use it to talk. You can post several times a day, but if you’re not listening to your customers’ posts and replies, you’re only doing half the work of a social media marketing campaign. You’re missing out on the opportunity to have meaningful conversations.

People WILL talk about you online. Sometimes they’ll reply to one of your posts or leave a review, and then conversation is easy. You simply respond. But what about when it’s not easy? Inconveniently, there’s no rule that customers have to tag you in their posts or only talk about you on your Facebook page. Just because you aren’t on Twitter doesn’t mean your customers aren’t. They may be Tweeting about you while you’re not listening. There’s also no rule that they can only talk about you during business hours. Just because you’ve shut down your computer for the day doesn’t mean their posts will stop. It’s up to you to keep your eyes and ears open if you want to stay on top of the conversation.

Let me give you a concrete example.