Microsoft Social Listening – Benefits and Features

Microsoft Social Listening, a powerful new service, can be used by an organization to monitor social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter and others. Your organization can use the social listening feature to track products and services, brands, and competitors, as well as global campaigns, all these in real-time so that you can gain an in-depth understanding of your customers and business across social media platforms.

Microsoft Social Listening – Benefits and Features

Social Listening Scenarios

Social for Marketing

  • Brand and product sentiment: you’ll get to learn what audiences (people) truly feel about your products and business.
  • Campaign monitoring: gain an understanding ( in real-time) of what people really think about your marketing messages on social networks
  • Top influencer tracking: Know who is most actively talking about your products, services, and brand, including how influential they are.

Social for Sales

  • Competitive intelligence: Provides you with crucial insights about competitors.
  • Target account tracking: allows proper monitoring of key developments at top accounts.
  • Social buying signals: receive spot purchasing signals and social web lead generation.

Social for Service

  • Social customer service: actively engage with customers and get to resolve various issues across the web
  • Real time alerts: quicker identification of customer issues and trends.
  • Integration with CRM: allows you to track social posts, from within your Dynamics CRM.

Social has greatly changed how people engage and communicate. Unlike in the past where customers did not bother much with products and services, today’s customer is sophisticated and more informed. She can be able to acquire new information in new creative ways and from new multiple sources. You will be surprised that decisions are greatly influenced by discussions online and customer reviews. 75% of B2B customers are, surprisingly, more likely to make purchase decisions based on social media influence.

Unlike the traditional way of purchasing where a customer would visit your business and ask multiple questions, today’s customer will be over 60% of the way through the fundamental sales cycle before contacting you. Unfortunately, a good number of today’s social tools are not only expensive, but also so complex that they are only available to an elite few, therefore, preventing relevant information from reaching those who need it most. However, Microsoft Social Listening makes it easy to avail this valuable information to everyone.

Highlights

  • Sophisticated Alerts: allows you to detect trends easily and listen for particular posts to stay informed
  • Native Language Sentiment Analysis: allows sentiment analysis in the native language, guarantees you don’t miss cultural cues.
  • Social for Everyone: easy integration with Dynamics CRM

Key Features

  • Value: Included with CRM Online licenses (professional)
  • Easy to use: Because of its intuitive user interface that resembles Dynamics CRM, you don’t necessarily have to be a power user to enjoy its benefits
  • Accessible from O365 platform: Supports single sign on via Office365, with no additional log in or credentials required. Can be purchased and even administered on Office 365
  • Azure cloud-based service: Offers excellent support and a high availability, enabling customers to automatically benefit from future platform developments
  • Comprehensive data: offers full coverage of Facebook, Twitter, YouTube Fan pages, including non-private posts.

Great User Interface

Microsoft Social Listening has great UI that provides excellent user experience. In addition, the dashboards and metrics allows macro views of the brand, making this tool suitable for senior marketing executives and agencies who are interested in measuring their sphere of influence, voice sharing, social media outreach and other factors that provide guidance to marketing programs.

Scalability and Extensibility

The new architecture is specially built for scalability and extensibility. This is because Microsoft is transitioning data sourcing from network APIs toward data acquisition, in real-time. Ideally, social listening performs a 3-step process of essential content extraction, social media sentiment analysis and safe upkeep or storage of result in company “pipelines.”Sentiment analysis utilizes the company’s proprietary NLP (Natural Language Processing) algorithm and, apparently, is the most influential step in determining the effectiveness of social listening.

Native Sentiment Analysis

The product features 19 languages, with the NPL capable of performing native sentiment analysis in 5 popular languages: English, French, German, Portuguese and Spanish. This provides a unique strength and advantage over competing social listening tools, as the multi-language processing enables native social sphere filtering, instead of requiring translation to the popular English language. That is when it can apply keyword queries and effective sentiment analysis for better results. This feature empowers global and multinational brands.

Social listening is an essential component in any social strategy. In fact, building hashtags and brand keyword queries could alert brands to potential issues and in turn aid social service. The product focuses on helping social service, and with 3rd-party ISV solutions like InsideView, basic social selling is also accommodated. Both the architecture and UX are solid. You can use the Blog Sourcing to monitor blogs on Tumblr and WordPress. Customers will be able to apply RSS feeds in monitoring other blogs.

Additional Benefits of the Product

This powerful tool enables businesses and their people to tap directly into social conversations, enabling “customer-facing” employees to create excellent customer experiences. Marketers can easily track relevant sentiment related to their company’s brand and gain an in-depth understanding of how their various marketing tactics are resonating.

The sales teams are also not left out, as they can stay ahead of the game while they watch for social buying signals to stay ahead of competition. Service teams are able to delight customers by offering real-time social care.

Conclusion

Your social tool should not be relegated to just a few individuals within your organization; social listening can be availed to anyone. By making the tool a part of your existing Dynamics CRM online subscription, it becomes easy to perform social listening.

Furthermore, by using social listening to monitor your brand and understand customer sentiment, you can be able to keep a watchful eye on your competitors so that you can be able to quickly spot new opportunities and competitive offerings. It is not only easy to use, but the alert system is also great. It will enable you to stay updated on the latest information. The sentiment feature in Microsoft Social Listening will let you get a good indication of your company’s products, services and brands.

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Michael Taylor
Michael is the Lead Author & Editor of DynaMe. DynaMe is a blog focused on cloud based Microsoft Dynamics.
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