The topic of social media monitoring has grown up on large scale since few years. Nevertheless, the understanding of which is often vague, since the requirements are constantly changing. We shed light on the different scenarios and present the most important tools and services in this article.


If you follow the discussions on social media monitoring in recent times, one gets the impression of easy, social media monitoring campaign was mainly monitoring or controlling their own social media channels on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Google+. Given the fact that today many companies are even active in the social web and create their own content, which also requires the evaluation, however, caused many more demands on the social media monitoring. This range of classic providers are facing new challenges.

On the other hand keep emerging new providers who specialize in the newly added topics. We present the various social media analysis tools and bring order to the chaotic market in which we categorize the various providers. It also deals with the question of what companies look for when choosing a provider and statements in which they should be suspicious.

What is Social Media Monitoring?

When social media monitoring are using crawlers to search various sources and the results delivered via an online dashboard or in the form of an analysis manually edited and prepared a presentation. We distinguish the so-called “screening” of “monitoring”: while in the former the entire public network will be searched, the “monitoring” using crawlers, parsers and access to APIs only certain sources such as forums, Twitter or Facebook traversed. Through cooperation with data providers – – Posts bought this also partly be.

The results can then be displayed graphically in the form of statistics. Such a graph can show, for example, how often their company is mentioned in contrast to the competition on the various social media channels. In addition, there will be a substantive review. It appears on the monitor, for example, whether the company discussed positive or negative and what subjects it is associated.

Getting Started

Let’s say Company X is not yet active on the social media channels, and there will also be a variety of reasons not necessarily active. And still want the company should know what customers think about your own business and consumers online and discuss.

In the first step, the company should use free tools to get a feel for the number and sentiment on the social web. Most free tools are limited to the monitoring of a platform (Twitter, Facebook, forums, etc.).

For Forum Board Reader and the Google Search discussions are recommended. Blogs you search still best with the Google Blog Search or example Twingly. If you want to accumulate the various tools can do so with the tools Yahoo Pipes or Netvibes. Netvibes has meanwhile also chargeable monitoring. This provider has the advantage that with a free account from the data reader board are included.

Before companies are active in the social web, it makes sense in any case, the communication with the company and the brand as part of an analysis to evaluate manually. Knowing the needs and interests of the customers, by the findings of the monitoring may strategies for social media measures are derived. Where consumers see problems? What is seen as both a strength and what weakness? What consumers employed in the context of products and services and what are the competitors positioned?

Free tools – Twitter

The Twitter Search provides a search of up to seven days, but at a maximum of 1,500 tweets. Twitter Crawl includes, however, only data from German users who have registered location information. For this data is also available retroactively. Topsy does offer to historical data from Twitter, a search for # crime scene but again, it is clear that the data available are not nearly complete. Who places particular emphasis on Twitter data should come to grips with the terms “Twitter Search API”, “Twitter Streaming API” and Gnip.

  • Twitter Search ( )
  • Topsy ( )

Free tools – Facebook

The Facebook search engines search only public status messages. In most cases, the communication is not searched at Fanpages. Then, companies should be strictly followed when choosing suppliers. Typically, the observed Fanpages be registered for monitoring.

  • Booshaka ( )
  • Kurrently ( )

Media observers

Before a long-term monitoring is placed, it is also advisable to carry out an analysis or testing for monitoring. In a small communication volume, the company with this free tool, Google Alerts or free services from paid providers do (for example, the Community Report Netbreeze) independently. For companies with a large volume of communication, it makes sense to perform this phase in cooperation with the media observers, the PR agency or a full-service monitoring provider, as these firms advise the company in this area very well and run in the right direction can.

Full-service provider

Full-service monitoring vendors have the advantage that they are usually on the social media have specialized communication and offer not only the analysis and monitoring as well as consulting services in this area. Take recommendations and strategies based on the analysis and assist companies in the marketing activities on the social web.

If a long-term monitoring will be built and are competence and capacity within the company already exists, the company can also contact a technology provider. In this case, the company should make in advance of the content and requirements for the monitoring of thoughts. Important example is the question of which financial resources.Should also be made clear whether the involvement of the dashboard is required in other systems (CRM keyword). Other questions are: How many people are expected to work with the tool? Acquire the company wants only contributions to your company or to the competition, or a particular subject area are analyzed with?

Tools for campaign evaluation

A monitoring without further processing of the results and findings is meaningless.Therefore, for every company, the question of what happens with the gained insights. The contents of the monitoring should be processed in the form of reporting and the employees and managers in the company made available to be involved in future decisions as to knowledge. If a company is already active in the social web, a written transcript of their activities is essential.


Despite these numerous vendors and tools, there are still a lot of potential in terms of business models in social media analysis and evaluation of own channels. And so the market for monitoring providers continues to grow.

More and more upstarts advertise with various promises to convince potential customers of their own tool. Statements regarding the database are to enjoy but generally with caution. Statements like “We are watching the entire Internet” are not credible, because the entire social web observed no party, not even Google. Companies already know relevant platforms of their industries should specifically ask the provider for these sources or on the exact costs to integrate these pages.

Regarding the source cover many tools gladly keep covered. Before companies approach a provider, you should create a list of criteria. What the company wants to use the results of the monitoring? If the monitoring of an external service provider or by internal resources to be implemented? Which costs budget (setup, monthly fees) is available?Since many companies are overwhelmed at the beginning with this issue, it is helpful to the supervising agency as external consultant to integrate. Before companies make a final decision on a provider that they should look ahead in any case, different tools.

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