Singapore Budget 2021: Highlights From Social Media

Last year, Circus Social brought you the highlights from the Singapore Budget 2020, and we’re now back with Budget 2021!

At the Singapore Budget 2021 speech on 16th February, Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat announced a suite of initiatives to help Singapore emerge stronger from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Using our digital intelligence software 20/Twenty, Circus Social took a deep dive into social media data in Singapore, uncovering netizens’ opinions about the newly-announced initiatives.

Can Money Buy Happiness?

According to the reactions from Singaporeans towards the Household Support Package, not quite. While some were pleased that lower-income families would receive an increase in financial assistance, others in higher income brackets were unhappy about being left out.

Bye Bye, Online Shopping?

The announcement of an increase in GST for imported goods drew the highest volume of negative reactions. Online shoppers were unhappy with the prospect of needing to pay additional GST on top of their shopping and shipping expenses.

Recognising Our Frontliners

The enhancement of salaries for nurses and healthcare workers was met with positivity, as many felt that frontline workers deserved a more tangible show of gratitude.

Infographic: Circus Social's coverage of SG Budget 202

RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 13: Episode 1-6 Highlights

RuPaul's Drag Race Season 13: Episode 1-6 Highlight Banner

Being the massive RuPaul fans we are, Circus Social has been tracking the social media buzz around season 13 in Southeast Asia to uncover which queens are the fan favourites, who has the biggest social media following, and what viewers are saying about each episode.

In this post, we’ll bring you the highlights from the first 6 episodes of season 13!

Social Media Follower Leaderboard

RuPaul's Drag Race Episode 1-6 Social Media Follower Leaderboard

If you’ve been following RuPaul for some time, you’ll notice that season 13 is a little special. In a surprise twist, the first episode saw half the cast immediately “eliminated” (well, sort of) and grouped into the Pork Chop Queens. The “eliminated” queens were not really given the ax, but instead, given another chance to showcase their talents separate from the first group of queens who won the challenge in episode 1.

Interestingly, queens who were eliminated saw significant growth in their follower count post-elimination, even surpassing some of the remaining competitors on the leaderboard, as seen by Kahmora, Joey Jay, & Tamisha Iman’s placement in W4, W5 and W6 respectively.

Social Media Share of Voice

RuPaul's Drag Race Episode 1-6 Social Media Share of Voice

The Share of Voice chart measures which queen is driving the most organic mentions on social media. The higher the share of voice, the more mentions a queen has amassed.

Despite Symone’s high follower count on Instagram, her relatively low share of voice of 4% indicates that she may not be a fan favourite in Southeast Asia. The most discussed queens on social media in the past 4 weeks were

  1. Denali: 28% of all social mentions
  2. Tamisha Iman: 13% of all social mentions
  3. Gottmik: 12% of all social mentions

With the help of WordClouds, a visualisation of the most frequently mentioned keywords, we’ll uncover what kind of conversations are happening on social media in relation to the queens.

Denali’s WordCloud

Denali Episode 1-6 WordCloud

Words like flip, lipsync, legendary split, and assassin are a testament to Denali’s showmanship and her branding as a fierce and captivating performer. Social media mentions about Denali typically peak after her performances on the show, as well as from her now-viral ice-skating video on Twitter.

Denali and Kahmora Hall’s lipsync battle in episode 4 also created buzz on social media, given her close bond with the fellow Chicagoan. 

Tamisha Iman’s WordCloud

Tamisha Episode 1-6 WordCloud

Tamisha Iman’s extensive experience as a drag queen has seen the emergence of fan hashtags such as #imandynasty and #imanpower. While she is known for her motherly presence, viewers caught a glimpse of her not-so-nice side during a heated argument with Kandy Muse in episode 5.

In the episode, Tamisha accused Kandy of being arrogant, which caused a clash not just between the 2, but also divided the entire group of queens to take sides. Her departure from the show in episode 6 was an emotional exit for many viewers.

Gottmik’s WordCloud

Gottmik Episode 1-6 WordCloud

From winning the Ball challenge wearing outfits constructed using just bags, to the iconic Train Runway look which incorporated the colours of the Trans flag, Gottmiks’ outfits are a popular topic of discussion among viewers. The outcome of episode 5 was also a huge subject of contention, with fans hoping for both Utica and Gottmik to win.

Bee sneaking also appeared in the WordCloud because of the hilarious bee scene in episode 5, where a bee interrupted the friend group’s discussion outdoors, causing them to break out in hysterical laughter.


We are only ⅓ through the competition at this point, and we’ll be sharing more RPDR updates in the coming months. Keep your eyes peeled and check our Instagram page every Monday for weekly updates!

PHASE 3: Too Soon, or a Long Time Coming?

Christmas and New Years’ may be around the corner, but something else has been causing a stir on social media: Phase 3 of Singapore’s reopening.

Despite recording little to no community cases in recent months, Singapore has continued to enforce restrictions on social gatherings, adopting a phased approach to returning to pre-COVID.

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong recently announced the highly-anticipated Phase 3, which drew a mixed bag of reactions from netizens – similar to what we found on social media during Phase 2.

Using social media data captured by our social listening tool, 20/Twenty, we uncovered the top reactions and sentiments of netizens towards Phase 3. Although the easing of restrictions brought about feelings of excitement and gratitude, netizens also raised concerns about the welfare of migrant workers, who continue to be under tight restrictions.

Read on to find out what else netizens had to say:

Phase 3 Infographic: Social Media Buzz & Sentiment

[Infographic] Mental Health In Singapore Amidst COVID-19

The stigma surrounding mental health has been especially prevalent among Asian communities, where conversations are typically not approached and are considered taboo. In a 2020 study conducted by the Institute of Mental Health, some of the causes of stigma were identified as negative portrayals in the media, a lack of understanding, as well as cultural influences.

With the onset of COVID-19, many experienced unforeseen challenges that have gradually led to a better understanding and awareness of mental health in Singapore. During this time, Samaritans of Singapore noted an uptake in calls to their support hotline, with many seeking help for issues stemming from unemployment and isolation.

In light of this, Circus Social wanted to uncover online conversations and sentiments around mental wellbeing in Singapore. Using 20/Twenty, our social listening and monitoring solution, we analysed social media conversations to answer the following questions:

  • What types of mental health issues are discussed on social media?
  • Where are conversations about mental wellbeing typically discussed?
  • What do people identify as the key factors and triggers of their issues?
  • How different are the issues discussed by men and women?

Check out the infographic below to learn about the key findings from Circus Social’s newest report: Uncovering Mental Health In Singapore.

Infographic: Uncovering Mental Health

Interested in reading more? Visit our website to download your complimentary report. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to Circus Social’s Insights team at insights@circussocial.com.

If you or someone you know needs support, here are a few helplines that you may reach out to:

Samaritans of Singapore: 1800 221 444

Institute of Mental Health: 6389 2222

Singapore Association of Mental Health: 6389 2222

For a more extensive list of helplines, please visit https://www.gov.sg/article/call-these-helplines-if-you-need-emotional-or-psychological-support

3 Reasons Why Social Listening Is A MUST For Marketers

Whether you’re a digital marketer tracking the launch of a new product or a content creator looking to up your game, the primary goal of any marketer remains the same – to promote a product or service to a target audience with the ultimate goal of driving awareness and sales.

To do this, marketers previously needed to invest in costly tracking tools and research programs. However, the advent of social listening has made it possible for marketers to monitor campaign performance, get consumer insights, source new influencers, and much more – simply by tracking mentions of a particular topic of interest on the internet.

Read on to find out how the role of a marketer can be made more manageable with the help of social listening.

Campaign Tracking & Reporting

Digital marketers who run marketing campaigns understand the importance of tracking conversions, CPCs, CTRs, and other quantitative metrics – but how sure are you that these are the right metrics to measure success? While generating traffic or making sales are great performance outcomes, it’s important to dig deep into the organic conversations as well.

Social listening provides marketers with an insight into:

  • Key conversation themes being discussed: What kind of conversations is your campaign driving among audiences?
  • Overall sentiment: Are there any aspects of your campaign, brand, or product that may be receiving negative sentiment? What are these negative sentiments in relation to?
  • Campaign share of voice: How much more or less is my campaign being talked about online in comparison to my competitors’ campaigns?
20/Twenty Social Listening Tool: Sentiment Charts

At the end of a marketing campaign, having a combination of qualitative and quantitative insights will provide more holistic learnings that can be integrated into future marketing campaign strategies.

Content Marketing

Gone are the days when marketers could rely solely on their sixth-sense and gut feeling to direct their content strategies. Given the time and resources it takes to develop content, why wouldn’t you want to ensure that it’s engaging and relevant to your brand’s audience?

Social listening offers content marketers a wealth of data to get inspiration and ideas from, such as user-generated content and viral content.

User-Generated Content

Coming up with fresh content can be a daunting and lengthy task, especially if you’re feeling uninspired. What could be a better way to promote your brand or product, besides leveraging on existing content created by your own consumers? By using social listening to track what consumers are sharing about your brand or product, you’re bound to find high-quality photos, videos, or reviews that can be re-shared on your brand’s social pages.

Trending & Viral Content

Once upon a time, memes and viral videos were only circulated on social media by the average person. Brands have since recognised the engagement and interest driven by these memes, hijacking them and creating marketable content out of it.

Take the 10 Year Challenge for instance – what started as a challenge for individuals to share side-by-side photos of themselves 10 years apart, became an avenue for brands to show how they have evolved (the glow up of the Xbox controller), or remained the same (like Lego).

Xbos & Lego's 10 Year Challenge

But how can you stay on top of trends? And more importantly, how do you know if a trend is worth riding on? The 20/Twenty social listening platform offers some useful features to determine if a trend may go viral:

  • Impact Score™: Circus Social’s proprietary algorithm that assigns scores to online content depending on the volume and type of engagement received. The higher the Impact Score, the more engaging the content is.
  • Virality™: A predictive feature that uses advanced machine learning technology to identify content that is already viral, as well as content that is likely to go viral. If you spot content that is likely to go viral, it may be worth leveraging on it.

In addition to the above metrics, our Trendspotting Checklist is another great way to assess if, and when, your brand should hop on a social media trend.

Influencer Identification

With the rise of social media, celebrities are not the only ones brands are engaging for endorsement. Consumers are now looking to online influencers for product information, and these advocates definitely help nudge purchase decisions. Despite numerous studies supporting the impact of these online personalities in driving conversions, most brands lack a data-driven approach in the selection of their influencer community.

There are many layers to consider when qualifying an influencer, and since most of their content is on social media, social listening comes in handy for marketers who wish to discover and track their online performance. If your brand is just starting to leverage influencer marketing, your team will likely find themselves asking “Who should I engage?” and “Where can I find them”?

Step 1: Quantitative Analysis

The first step is to explore the digital ecosystem and narrow down who are the main personalities driving conversations in your industry, what their persona is, and if it fits your brand proposition. Metrics to consider include:

  • Impact Score™: A proprietary algorithm that assigns scores to online content depending on the volume and type of engagement received. The higher the Impact Score, the more engaging the content is.
  • Engagement scores (likes, shares, comments, views): Influencers with high engagement metrics such as likes are great, but individuals with more comments and shares are indicative of a stronger engagement with their followers.
  • Overall post sentiment: If your influencer is driving more negative sentiments than positive, they may not be the best fit for your brand or product.
20/Twenty Social Listening Tool: Influencer Identification Chart

Step 2: Qualitative Assessment

Once you have qualified prospective influencers based on digital metrics, the next step will be to deep-dive into their posts and conduct a qualitative analysis on their page personality, content, and overall alignment with your campaign objectives. Even if you are only engaging the influencer for a short period of time, their profile and identity outside of your campaign will shape consumers’ perception of your brand. 


If you have any questions or are interested in finding out more about how marketing teams can leverage on social listening, drop us an email at insights@circussocial.com and we’ll be in touch!

Automated Topic Detection & Clustering: Identify What Matters In A Glance

We’ve just added Topic Clustering to our ever and fast-growing list of powerful features in 20/Twenty – our comprehensive social listening and monitoring solution.

With this all-new Top Topics and clustering feature, you can now identify the key conversation topics across huge datasets in an instant. Simply define your filters and hit ‘Apply’ to see the top topics of the day (or a custom duration) unravel!

Discover top topics in an instant, with the power of clustering with Circus Social's 20/Twenty social listening and monitoring tool

Identify Top Topics With Auto-Categorization

Powered by 20/Twenty’s intelligent clustering algorithm built using powerful AI, you can now view conversations auto-grouped into relevant categories as part of our robust social listening.

Eliminating the need for you to trawl manually through thousands of posts, you can reach data insights much faster and cut down your research time in half. With intelligently surfaced topics, you can quickly identify the top areas of online conversation that need your attention.

Deep-dive into each auto-surfaced topic cluster to discover the top keywords behind each cluster and right-click to view the actual conversations behind these topic groups.

Access powerful topic clustering with social listening via 20/Twenty

Identify Topic Sentiments In A Glance

Detect top negative or positive sentiment topics quickly and deep dive to discover more topic groups or keywords behind these. Right-click to view raw posts.

Identify top sentiments from topic clustering powered by 20/Twenty AI and machine learning
Identify top sentiments from topic clustering powered by 20/Twenty AI and machine learning








Using this nifty and uber-powerful feature, you can quickly isolate problem, concern or issue areas associated with your brands or products and address these points via optimized communication or communications and product strategy to your customers. Perfect for those PR or crisis management moments.

How Does This Work?

20/Twenty utilizes huge and continuously growing datasets comprising of posts, conversations and data points across all supported social media and data sources to train it’s machine learning algorithms and power our AI.

All the data that streams into our platform is intelligently classified by our Natural Language Processing (NLP) Engine, into more than 180 clusters across multiple industries, based on the content in the post. This map of clusters can be visualized at multiple levels in order to get a quick overview of the different themes of conversations with their overall sentiment, impact and traction. Each of these clusters can also be explored in detail, to see the individual conversations that fall under it.

Access powerful topic clustering with social listening via 20/Twenty

Topic Clustering Hierarchy

More Filters = More Power

These topics are automatically generated based on your filter settings. This is based on 20/Twenty’s advanced clustering algorithm. Top 10 topics along with sentiments are displayed. You can deep-dive into each parent topic to identify the top 10 keywords and phrases driving these topics. Right-click on any topic to view the actual conversations behind these topics.

You can further sort these via built-in performance metrics on 20/Twenty such as impact, traction, and post volume to get to the most impactful conversation clusters in an instant.

Topic Clustering In Action

Here are some auto-topic clusters identified across various industries –

Singapore Government

FMCG

Automotive

There’s more where that came from! Stay tuned and keep an eye out for more cool updates soon to come.

If you’ve got any questions or would like to find out how Topic Clustering and how 20/Twenty’s machine learning and AI prowess can help you and your business, reach out to us at insights@circussocial.com or contact us here and we’ll be in touch!

If you’re a 20/Twenty user, visit our Help & Support Hub to find out more about topic clustering.

How To Choose The Right Social Listening Tool For Your Brand

If you’ve stumbled across this page, chances are you already have an idea of what social listening is, how it works, and have likely seen a couple of demos for the different tools that are out there. After looking around, you’re still not quite sure which to get – because after all, the budget is tight and you only want to get the tool that gives you the most bang for your buck. 

It’s daunting trying to invest in something that you are not familiar with (like buying a house for the first time and not knowing that you’re supposed to inspect the plumbing), and the last thing you want is to rely on gut feel. For those of you at a loss, fret not – we’re here to help! After years of being in the industry and working with a wide range of clients, it’s apparent that there are some qualities within a tool and a service provider that are crucial to the success of its integration within a team.

As with any investment you wish to make, there is no ‘one size fits all approach’ that caters to everyone’s needs. Whether you are working in an MNC, SME, or just about to launch your startup, here are some of the things that you should consider when selecting the right social listening tool for you. 

Wide Coverage of Data From Your Market of Interest – especially in Asia

Wide Coverage

The biggest frustration we hear from seasoned users is that their tool doesn’t cover conversations that they are interested in – especially in Asia and the Middle East. While this may not be an issue with data from English-speaking geographies, specialization is crucial when looking at regions with diverse languages such as Asia, Middle East, and even Latin America. 

When Kraft Heinz was struggling to maintain its share price in early 2019 due to the loss of sales, many naturally attributed it to the shifting consumer appetite away from processed foods. While moving towards a healthier lifestyle is a global trend, it would be a mistake to assume it is identical across regions. By zoning in on different geographies, social media conversations were able to identify the differences in popularity, preference, and growth of interest towards healthy snacks. What’s more interesting is consumers’ underlying perception towards healthier alternatives: Singaporeans are willing to pay the price, Filipinos are more price-sensitive, and Indonesians’ DIY healthy snacks (Source: Healthy Snacking Trends Report 2019, Circus Social).

Localised insights are the crux of marketing and positioning in SEA and that’s why local expertise and coverage in these markets is crucial in solidifying your brand positioning.

Actionable Insights From Data

Actionable Insights

What is data if you can’t make sense of it? Once you have the assurance that the tool is able to deliver on the data you need, the next step is to assess if it can populate insights that you’ll be able to apply to your everyday tasks. Every tool has its own niche, which means the offerings for automated insights would differ based on that. Your responsibility is to have a very clear idea of what your team’s objectives are when subscribing to a social listening tool.

For instance, if you are looking to identify trends for content creation, you’ll need to have some sort of indicator that can determine if certain posts are gaining traction and going viral. But since users won’t always be on the tool and these trends are time-sensitive, it would be perfect if you can also get an email alert for that. This way you will always be in the know when there are potential trends to ride on, even when you are not actively looking through social media. (Note: Not all trends are worth riding on so make sure you look through the Trendspotting Checklist before doing anything reckless).

Only with a clear end goal in mind will you be able to drill down on the functionalities that are the best (tool) for you. 

Try this: Ask your sales representative to show you a couple of automated insights. If you are not able to make sense of half the charts or see the insights making your job easier, it’s time to look for another tool. After all, if it’s not intuitive enough for you to understand easily, chances are it won’t be for your team too. You might just spend more time learning about the insights than actually applying it. 

Fuss-free, User-Friendly UX/UI

User Friendliness

As with any new skills that you are picking up, there is bound to be a learning curve. The same goes for a social listening tool, but the goal is to have things as simple as possible in order to increase buy-in from your team. You don’t need data to predict that your team is more likely to use the new tool if it’s easy and convenient – which is why UI/UX should also be at the heart of your consideration. 

Couple of things to look out for in a good interface:

  1. Easy Access to Data. It doesn’t have to be a Google search bar, but you want to have a tool that makes data search a breeze, without needing to input lengthy and complicated syntaxes. Just type in your keywords and voilà, the relevant posts pop up on the dashboard.
  2. Clear and Standardized Segmentation. Each section on the tool should be clearly defined and standardized across tabs. For instance, the main menu should always be on the left, and everything that has to do with Facebook should be color-coded with the same shade of blue. This may seem pedantic, but you’d be surprised by the amount of confusion that can arise from this minor oversight. 
  3. User Prompts and Guides. Whether you are navigating the insights or configuring new topics for tracking, these prompts will be very handy in ensuring you don’t miss anything important.
  4. Device Compatibility. While you don’t necessarily need to be accessing your tool 24/7, having the option to skim through insights when you’re on the go is always a plus. 
  5. Customization. There’s no interface that can cater to everyone, hence the ability to customize is the key to making the dashboard truly yours. 

Continual Innovation

Innovation

A good tool can meet your needs, but the best tool can show you things you didn’t know you needed. Don’t settle for a tool that is “good enough” for now – understand its history in innovating because there is always something to be improved, something that can make your life easier. This is especially true when it comes to social monitoring and analytics, the landscape is ever-changing since its inception and it will change continually down the road. Think about it – TikTok was just another app 2 years back, and now it’s everything anyone can talk about. 

That being said, some established tools may easily fall into the innovation paradox and not be incentivized to move away from their current functionalities. After all, they have created a well-received platform, and moving away from its core may upset current users. While it may satisfy in the short run, such tools are bound to play catchup when they realize the innovation gap, by which users would have missed out on valuable opportunities. 

You need a tool that can give you access to the latest data sources and fresh insights – which is only possible through continual innovation. It’s not to say that you cannot switch to another tool after finding it incompatible with your needs, but choosing the right tool earlier will save you a lot of time and headache from porting over. 

Account Managers That Sets You Up For Success

Account Managers

Account managers are typically there to support onboarding or when the user faces any issue with the tool, but what sets apart the best tool from the rest is if you have someone who can be a mentor in social listening. These are the people who are the experts in recommending actionable strategies from social insights, and their experience can give you an idea of what metrics you should be on the lookout for in specific campaigns.

Even with the most comprehensive data, in-depth insights, seamless UX/UI, and state-of-art functionalities, the best tools can only bring you so far if you cannot make the most out of it. As your main helpline, the account manager strongly shapes overall experience with the tool, so make sure you get acquainted with the prospective manager before signing on. 


At the end of the day, what makes the best social listening tool boils down to whether the tool specializes in YOUR use case and is able to help meet YOUR specific needs. If you’re a marketer, consider what strategies to implement to achieve your KPIs – be it on campaign launches or content creation. On the other hand, those of you in PR & Corporate Comms may be interested in the tool’s capability in crisis management, or directions on how to manage your company’s messaging. 

If you are looking for a social listening tool or expertise in social media analytics, drop us an email at insights@circussocial.com and we’ll be happy to assess if Circus Social is the right choice for you.

Why Social Listening Is A Must-Have For PR Teams

In today’s world, the role of the PR practitioner is constantly evolving and involves so much more than press releases, press conferences, and managing crisis situations. From competitive analysis to tracking brand health, the day-to-day responsibilities of a person in Public Relations & Corporate Communications can be made much more manageable with the help of social listening.

Not familiar with “social listening”? Read our Introduction To Social Listening before proceeding!

Crisis Monitoring & Management

From unsatisfied customers to social media blunders, most brands are bound to experience a crisis situation at some point. However, what can make or break a brand’s reputation is how the crisis is dealt with. Before formulating a plan of action and crafting up a response, it’s important to first get the facts:

  • Who is talking about it?
  • What are they saying?
  • Where are these conversations happening?
  • Why do they feel this way?

Having a good social listening tool on hand will allow you to keep track of the relevant conversations and answer all of the questions above, providing you with the insights needed to manage the crisis.

Staying on top of every single mention can be time-consuming, which is where alerts come in handy. Our social listening tool, 20/Twenty, offers users the ability to easily set up real-time alerts to keep you updated when developments occur. There’s a wide range of real-time alert options available for you to choose from. Some of the most important alerts we recommend for PR teams include:

  • Negative Sentiment Alert: Be notified when conversations with a negative sentiment exceed a certain threshold
  • Influencer Alert: Stay updated if an influential person with a significant number of followers has mentioned the crisis
  • Engagement Alert: Receive a notification if a mention garners a high volume of engagement

Measuring Public Relations & Corporate Communications Efforts

A lot of resources go into launching a campaign or introducing a new product, which is why it’s so important to measure the impact of these efforts. Social listening can help uncover how much interest a campaign is getting, how many people are talking about it, the sentiments behind these mentions, and much more.

In addition to tracking mentions, 20/Twenty’s Insights section displays important metrics to understand how a campaign has performed. Some of these include:

  • Volume of Conversation: How many people are talking about it?
  • Conversation Themes: What are people talking about?
  • Conversation Sentiment: Are people reacting in a more positive, negative, or neutral manner to it?
  • Channel Analysis: From Facebook to Blogs, which channels are most of the mentions coming from?
  • Share of Voice By News Sources: Which media publications have shared the most coverage?

The Conversation Over Time chart displays positive, negative, and neutral conversations over a period of time. Want to find out more about peaks in conversations? Simply right-click on any point and you’ll be able to view the actual conversations in the platform.

Conversation Over Time Chart in 20/Twenty Social Listening Tool

Competitive Analysis

Ever heard of the saying “Keep your friends close, but your enemies closer”? If you’re not currently engaged in competitive analysis, chances are your competitors are already keeping tabs on you. While it’s crucial to listen in on what your consumers are saying, it’s equally important to keep an eye (and ear) on your competitors’ organic conversations.

Social listening can provide brands with competitive insights such as:

  • Campaign Performance: How well do competitors’ campaigns perform compared to your brand?
  • Brand & Product Sentiment: What do competitors’ consumers think of their brand and product?
  • Social Media Engagement: What kind of social content generates the most engagement for competitors?
  • Share of Voice: Which competitor has the largest share of voice in the market?

The Share of Voice chart in 20/Twenty is particularly useful when comparing the volume of organic conversations across competitors. In the chart below, it is evident that Shiseido is driving the most conversations.

Share of Voice Chart in 20/Twenty Social Listening Tool

If you have any questions or would like to find out more about how Public Relations and Corporate Communications teams can leverage on social listening, reach out to us at insights@circussocial.com and we’ll be in touch!

Social Listening VS Social Monitoring

Social Listening VS Social Monitoring

So what does adding the word social do to their meanings? 

Social Monitoring

The act of social monitoring is when you recognise and react to brand mentions on social media.

This could be answering queries through a customer service representative, interacting with consumers on social media through a social media manager, or taking note of pain points your customers usually experience with your product. Social media monitoring is more of a reactive approach. Pringles is a brand that engages in this, by regularly responding to consumer queries and feedback on social media sites such as Twitter:

Pringles Brand Twitter Page

Social Listening

The act of social listening, on the other hand, is when you gather data from and extract insights around:

(a) Organic brand mentions
(b) Organic industry mentions
(c) People organically sharing an opinion about your product or your industry/ competitors 

With social listening, you do not necessarily have to react by personally responding to these mentions. Instead, you proactively try to find learning points from the myriad of data you’re gathering. You also look at data from a much broader perspective compared to social monitoring. Some examples include trend-spotting, pattern recognition, and consumer insights, which can then be translated into better marketing & content strategies. 

In essence, social monitoring is a subset of the broader social listening process – the former as a goal of enhancing engagement with their current consumers, while the latter is an analytical effort to make more informed decisions & strategies for the brand moving forward.

Should I Monitor or Listen?

It’s important to note that there is no “better” option between social listening and social monitoring. While your business may have long-term goals such as establishing a strong brand image, achieving this also requires meeting short-term goals such as maintaining positive brand sentiments through continued customer satisfaction.

Social monitoring is great for staying on top of customer questions, complaints, or feedback, but social listening looks at the bigger picture and can provide insights into your consumers and competitors that you may not have been looking for.

If you’d like to find out which technique (or both) is best suited for your brand, feel free to reach out to us at insights@circussocial.com.

How Do Social Listening Tools Work?

First things first – Social listening is the process of finding out what people are saying about a particular topic, brand, personality, etc. online. (You may read our previous blog “Social Listening 101” to learn more. You may also be interested in this interesting discussion on social media monitoring). In a very basic sense, social listening can be done by searching for keywords in the search bars of social media sites and manually checking through the post results:

Searching for posts on social media sites

While this sounds easy enough, it’s an incredibly tedious method and will not give you the full picture of what online conversations around a certain topic are about. That’s where social listening tools like Circus Social’s 20/Twenty come in handy. 

What do social listening tools do?

Simply put, social listening tools work like a Google search engine, displaying mentions of a keyword or topic from social media sites (like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Reddit), blogs, forums, e-commerce, and product review sites, among many others. It’s important to note that only public posts are legally allowed to be crawled by social listening tools. If you come across a tool that provides private data, it’s probably been generated through illegal means. Circus Social works with reputable data providers and social media platforms to gain special access to public data. This is done after going through extensive reviews to ensure your private data is not accessed and personally identifiable information is not extracted and available.

How is data obtained from these sources?

Data is primarily obtained through data partnerships with companies such as GNIP (Twitter data provider), Facebook, Google, and many other sources. In addition to this, Circus Social has proprietary data crawlers that capture public data on blogs, forums, and websites via RSS feeds or APIs.

How can social listening tools find relevant mentions?

Searching for data in social listening tools such as 20/Twenty is done using keywords. If you want to find out what people are saying about iPhones, simply type in the term “iPhone” and online posts containing this term will appear:

From #iPhone to Apple phone, there are so many ways in which iPhones are discussed, which is why you need to include other relevant keywords when conducting a search. This is called a Boolean query, which is a combination of words and operators. There are a number of operators you can use to make your search term more robust, but these are the most common ones:

Circus Social's Boolean Operator Guide

So how can we improve our search for mentions of iPhone? We can use a Boolean query like this:

iphone OR “#iphone” OR “#iphoneSE” OR “#iphone11” OR “#iphone11pro” OR “#iphone11promax” OR ((apple) AND (phone OR cellphone OR mobile))

By adding a few more keywords and Boolean operators, our search results increased by more than 2,000 mentions:

Searching for keywords on 20/Twenty

We hope that our simple explainer of how social listening works has piqued your interest! Check out the video below to see what else is possible in 20/Twenty.

If you’d like to learn more about the data 20/Twenty can track, feel free to reach out to us by email at insights@circussocial.com or contact us here