Social Listening Beyond Google Analytics

I’ve used Google Analytics to monitor for mentions of clients and topics for many years. However, there are now more tools that are worthy of consideration for tracking digital mentions of you, your brand, your company and/or products.

First, some props to the tool that started it all. Google Alerts is simple and free and it highlights a lot of website and blog content, but is lighter on social media results.

To get the full picture of what people are saying online, consider one of these tools that track mentions across the web, social media, blogs and more.

Talkwalker Alerts

Talkwalker Alerts is similar but more robust than Google Alerts. It monitors most of the web, including blogs and forums. You can also monitor the web in 22 languages.

Talkwalker Alerts is free and easy to use. You choose a keyword to monitor and you get listings of relevant mentions delivered to your inbox. You can choose to receive all mentions or the most important ones based on traffic and engagement. You can get mentions daily or weekly.



Awario monitors all major social media networks, blogs, forums, news sites, etc. in real time. You can reply to mentions straight from the app and from multiple social media accounts.

A dashboard displays the number of mentions, the topics that circle around your brand and mentions by sentiment. Boolean search can be used for advanced keyword queries.

Free trial. $29/month.


Mention monitors all the major social media networks, blogs, news, forums and the web in real time. It also supports Boolean search. Mention highlights relevant influencers and sentiment.

Mention has collaboration features for social media marketing teams. You can add team members and assign tasks to each. Mention can be integrated with Slack, Buffer, and Zapier.

Access your account from any device and get email notifications.

Free trial. $29/month.


Brand24 monitors all the major social media platforms, news, blogs and the web. It analyzes mention growth, reach, sentiment and relevant social media influencers. The mentions are updated every 12 hours, hourly or in real-time, depending on the level of plan.

You can add up to five users on the cheapest plan, while the maximum plan allows for up to 99 users. It integrates with Slack and has a mobile app.

Free trial. $49/month. 

The Secret Formula for Meaningful Social Media Goals

Want to spend less time on social media and get better results? You can. Start by setting social media marketing goals that align to business objectives.

The more specific your strategy is, the more effective the execution will be. The secret to success is taking time to define complete and meaningful goals. A good goal is more than a string of words. They are SMART.

Set SMART Goals

The first step to creating a social media marketing strategy is to establish your goals. Without goals, you have no way to measure your success. You will be spending time and money and have no idea of the impact.

Each of your goals should be:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Attainable
  • Relevant
  • Time-bound

An example of a SMART goal might be “Post to Facebook once a week with a call to action that leads people to the website.”

Track Metrics

Your SMART goals should set you up to track meaningful metrics. In the example above, you can compare web metrics on days that you have a Facebook post. Do the numbers increase?

Every goal should lend itself to its own metrics.

15 Great Things to Tweet About

Looking for Twitter content ideas for your digital strategy? Here are 25 ideas to consider. Any of these should be able be used in ways that support your online goals.

Remember that Twitter users expect a stream of content, so plan for more than one post each business day.

  1. Respond to something someone else says about you
  2. Follow relevant hashtags and participate in the conversation by adding your take
  3. Thank a customer, partner, etc for something great they did to support your biz
  4. Recognize a customer or partner for something they do well
  5. Share a photo from the view from your office today
  6. Share your agenda – where are you headed next and why
  7. Ask a question to learn more about what your followers (and the twitterverse) thinks
  8. Share something that made you laugh
  9. Recommend a person or a brand to follow
  10. Celebrate a business or personal milestone
  11. Discuss a book you just read and why it matters
  12. Share insight into one of your products or services
  13. Take inspiration from a current event to illustrate where your business fits in
  14. Share something you just learned
  15. Dig out a photo from the past