Social media experts often use special tools to listen, follow relevant conversations and engage on Twitter. Indeed, right now people at different time zones are talking about something important and interesting to you or your company. And if you decided to be on Twitter and other social media arenas, you probably don’t wanna miss a thing.
The easiest way to start monitoring things is to use Twitter Search capabilities. Of course, it adds a little bit of manual work, but it’s definitely OK to explore opportunities. For savvy users and marketeers, HootSuite and TweetDeck are considered as the best apps on the market. On a larger scale some prefer more sophisticated solutions, such as Radian6.
However, what exactly do you need to monitor on Twitter? It seems that everyone agrees on tracking the company, product or even executives’ names. What else? How to hear those voices that can’t live without your state-of-the-art product or the highest quality service?
Google Analytics, if used on your site, provides you with excellent research opportunities and can help in finding keywords for monitoring on social media. The Keywords report in the Traffic Sources section is a flourish emporium for those social souls interested in bringing new fans and followers. Just check out the reports and discover the keywords you’re missing in your social media efforts. In case you were thinking that Google Analytics should be used only for SEO/SEM purposes, it’s time to give it a more serious try.
P.S. A few nice tips on using Twitter real-time chats and tools for following Twitter hashtags.
UPD (06/30/2011): Social Signals are now trackable in Google Analytics and Webmaster Tools.