Why You Should Track Your Brand Mentions - Here's Why #126 | Perficient Digital

Why You Should Track Your Brand Mentions – Here’s Why #126

Poor Sir Laurence O’Bliviay! As an actor, he lives for press mentions, but his agent can’t find any.

Are you tracking your brand mentions online? Do you know what others are saying about your company? Are you effective at getting media and influencers to talk about you?

In this episode of the popular Here’s Why digital marketing video series, Perficient Digital’s Mark and Eric explain why monitoring and tracking brand mentions is important, and some of the things you can do with those mentions to improve your company and boost your marketing.

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Eric: Poor Sir Laurence. He lived for every mention of his name in the press.

Mark: Of course he does. And professional actors know that gaining success in their field is not just a matter of talent. The studios want to cast actors who people are talking about, because people will want to go to movies those actors are in.

Eric: And being talked about matters to business brands too, right?

Mark: Well, it certainly should. I mean, if you want to rise above having to re-win every buyer for every sale, if you want to turn buyers into customers who will choose to buy from you again and again, you’ve got to become a known brand. In this internet age, that means not only traditional word of mouth but also being regularly mentioned in online places, where you’ll be exposed to new potential customers.

Eric: But, of course, it matters how your brand is being mentioned.

Mark: For sure. And that brings us to the first reason why you should be tracking your brand mentions, watching your brand reputation. If businesses are bothering to find brand mentions at all, this is probably the main reason that they’re doing it, to see what people are saying about them.

Eric: There’s a lot of useful information to be gleaned out of that, isn’t there?

Mark: Sure. Not only can you monitor reputation by gauging general sentiment toward your brand and becoming aware of any potential reputation problems that might be out there before they blow up, but you can also glean valuable feedback about your company, products, and services. Some savvy companies have even picked up a new idea for a major product innovation by paying attention to conversations about them online. That could be worth many thousands of dollars in R&D for you.

Eric: Is there any other value to monitoring brand mentions besides reputation and feedback?

Mark: Yes. And this one is especially important for smaller companies or those still struggling to become known in their marketplace. Now, I’m talking about monitoring media mentions of your brand. If you’re a major brand, such mentions probably happen all the time and so they don’t mean as much, but for an up-and-coming brand, you want to know every time they happen so that you can make the best use of them.

Eric: So what do you mean by that?

Mark: Well, if a writer for a major publication took the time to make a positive mention of your company or refer to something your company published, such as a data study, you should start a relationship with that person. He or she might be inclined to write about you again in the future, especially if you take the time to thank them. You should keep a list of anyone who’s written about you and the publications in which those appeared, and then if you’ve begun a relationship with them, when you have a piece of content that might interest them, you have an opening to make them aware of it.

Eric: We’ve developed such a list over the past couple of years and it’s paying off for us, more and more. Now, when we’re getting ready to launch one of our major studies, we contact these media authors and offer to them ahead of publication under embargo. This gives them a chance to prepare an article about our study that they can release on the same day our study goes public. And that kinda gives them a scoop on it.

Mark: And we also use those contact lists as the basis for custom and look-alike audiences for paid social media campaigns. That puts our content in front of even more media writers and influencers. Now, that’s gotten us articles in the past, in The Wall Street Journal, The Daily Mail, TechCrunch, CIO, and dozens of other major publications that we know are followed and read by decision-makers at companies that we’d like to have as clients.

Eric: What else do you do with these mentions?

Mark: We track them as a metric of how successful we are in our media targeting campaigns. In our case, I monitor our brand name, Perficient Digital, of course, but I also keep alerts for Eric Enge and Mark Traphagen, since we’re frequently mentioned in connection with our company. So other companies might want to track mentions of their chief executives, for example. We collect and report a monthly number of such mentions. Because not all mentions are equally valuable, it’s good to set some threshold if you’re doing such tracking. Now, for us, we just decided to set a minimum Moz Domain Authority of 50 for the site where the mention occurred, just to have a cut off at some point

Eric: Finally Mark, how do you track all those mentions?

Mark: Well, there are any number of tools and services out there that you can use to alert you to mentions of your brand or people in your company. The paid ones, of course, will deliver the most for you. But let me mention a couple easy to access resources that can help people to get started. One is brandmentions.com. Now, it’s still in beta, and it’s going to go all paid soon, but I’ve found it to be the best of all of the, for now, free tools I’ve tried at ferreting out the most mentions of our brand across the web. You can set up a daily or weekly alert email that will show you mentions of your brand from blogs, news sites, social media and many other sources.

The other one is probably more familiar to a lot of people, and that’s BuzzSumo. They have an alerts function. Once you have a BuzzSumo account, go to the Monitoring tab and enter your brand name to get alerts of online mentions. Now, an added advantage here is that the alert will tell you whether or not the mention includes a link to your site. If it doesn’t, you could reach out to the author or site owner, and ask them to add a link, a great way to easily build some new links for your SEO.

Eric: So whatever tool you use to do it, the important thing is to start paying attention to where and how your brand shows up online. Use that to guard your reputation, get feedback for your company, and gauge how effective you are at getting attention from media and influencers.

SUMMARY: Why Track Brand Mentions?

  1. To monitor your brand’s reputation online, and be able to respond when needed.
  2. Get insights about customer satisfaction with your products and services.
  3. Discover new product or product improvement ideas.
  4. Create lists of media writers for outreach for your content.
  5. Develop a metric for the popularity of your brand.

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