You’ll likely hear about two kinds of “monitoring programs” in the Internet world. The first is a program that allows people to monitor computer usage. It’s generally used in an office setting to monitor employees’ computer habits or by parents to monitor their children’s whereabouts on the Internet. The second is a program that delivers people up-to-the-minute information about what is trending in their particular areas of interest. That’s the one we’re here to talk about today. A monitoring program is an essential tool to any business, but only if you use it right. If you are interested in using a monitoring program, we’d encourage you to first:
Understand Your Goals
Do you want to catch the buzz about latest trends so your company can follow suit? Are you interested in learning about breakthroughs in your industry? What about just listening to what’s being said about your company so you can proactively respond to the buzz? Deciding what you want to achieve through your monitoring program before implementing one is the key to its success.
Define What You Want to Monitor
Now that you’ve identified your goals, hone in on the exact subject matter you want to monitor. Once you start receiving updates, you’ll be able to judge the information and refine your information flow by adjusting your key words.
Be Prepared to Take the Good with the Bad
Monitoring programs will likely turn up criticisms about your company or your industry at large. Criticism is an opportunity for improvement. Now more than ever, customers don’t just have a bad experience and talk about it to a few colleagues around the water cooler; they talk about it to the world. Additionally, people are more likely to go on a rant when they get fired up about poor service or a faulty product than they are to take the time to brag about a great company. So what can you do when you are the recipient of these criticisms? Use it as an opportunity to correct the issue, and then release good press to that effect. If, for instance, someone blogs about poor service in your restaurant, take the time to publicly respond using positive communication. You can apologize for his or her bad experience and invite the customer in for another try. Be sure to use it as an opportunity to connect with phrases like, “Please ask for me when you arrive.” This demonstrates that you are listening and want to make things right with your customers, and that mediocre or bad service is NOT okay with you. Now the onus is on the person who put out the criticism and not on the restaurant, and you earn people’s trust that you will always try to do right by them.
Stay tuned for our next blog where we’ll share tips with you on how to use your monitoring program.