Using Social Listening For Competitive Intelligence

This is a picture of a Man with headphones on the London tube for an article titled Using social listening for competitive intelligence By Octopus Intelligence. Solving problems with Competitive Intelligence, common sense and market analysis. Competitive Intelligence, SMD Analysis, OODA Loops, and Intuitive Listening

Using Social Listening For Competitive Intelligence

This article suggests that using social listening for Competitive Intelligence could be a beneficial exercise to understand your market and customers better. And be able to react to developing situations quickly. The bigger the organisation, the more significant the impact a positive Tweet or a negative LinkedIn message has on you. They can reach all around the world.

  • Competitive Intelligence through Social Listening:
    • Understanding Market and Customers: Utilise social listening to understand the market dynamics and customer preferences better.
    • Quick Reaction to Market Changes: Keep abreast of rapid developments in your industry through real-time monitoring.
  • Social Media Listening Defined:
    • Monitoring Online Mentions: Track specific phrases, words, or detailed queries on social media and the web.
    • Data Analysis: Transform these mentions into actionable intelligence.
    • Scope of Tracking: It should extend beyond your brand to include competitors, campaigns, industry sectors, and more.
  • Benefits of Social Listening in Market Analysis:
    • PR and Reputation Management: Monitor your brand’s online presence, understand public perception, and manage potential crises.
    • Product Feedback: Use social listening to gather customer opinions on your and competitors’ products, identifying strengths and weaknesses.
    • Audience and Customer Service Insight: Understand customer needs and preferences to improve engagement and service.
    • Competitor Analysis: Gain insights into competitors’ customer feedback, brand health, and marketing strategies.
    • Lead Generation: Discover potential leads and patterns in customer interactions.
    • Influencer Marketing: Identify and engage with influencers, including those promoting competitors.

Strategic Application: Social listening is a strategic tool for competitive intelligence, focusing on various aspects such as product development, customer service, and market positioning. By focusing on these aspects, you can leverage social listening as a powerful tool for comprehensive competitor and market analysis.

But what’s social media listening?

It’s monitoring mentions of specific phrases and words or more detailed social media and web queries. Then, add the data analysis, and you will have social listening. You can just track your brand name, but you can also search competitors’ mentions, campaigns, hashtags, industry sectors, people, etc. You can go beyond social media and look at news websites, forums, the deep web and blogs. Social listening is also known as brand monitoring,  social media measurement, social intelligence, social media monitoring and even the ridiculously named buzz analysis.

The benefits

Social listening offers valuable insights into customers, the market, and your competitors. It is just one Competitive Intelligence tool, and it helps you answer the questions that matter to your business. But what can you use social listening for?

1. PR and reputation management

Social listening helps your PR teams by monitoring when and where your press releases and articles get published. Your team can track mentions of competitors and the industry keywords across all forms of online media to isolate new opportunities to achieve more coverage and talk to new relevant journalists. Mentions of your brand and products allow you to track your brand health and react to changes in the volume of mentions and, most importantly, their sentiment to respond to, reduce and prevent reputation crises. You can also learn about data leaks and hacks before reading about it in the Daily Mail or New York Times.

2. Product feedback

Social listening is great for tracking what your customers and clients say about you and your product online. You can develop your product capabilities and range by monitoring the key topics and sentiments. You will understand what they love about your product and what’s missing from it.

3. Audience and customer service

You will also learn about your audience so you can understand their needs better and be able to speak their language. So you improve your tone of voice in your written correspondence and on your website. Social listening allows you to exceed your customer’s expectations by responding to social media queries immediately. Most people want a response within an hour. One thing is for sure: if you don’t respond for a few days, your competitor will eventually benefit.

4. Competitor analysis

Social media monitoring tools allow you to track what’s happening with your competitors. What are customers saying about them, and how quickly do they respond to queries? Monitoring can work hand in hand with core Competitive Intelligence to understand what they will do next. However, basic monitoring will determine the voice and brand health metrics and allow you to compare them with your statistics.

Understand what your competitors’ customers love and hate about them. Which of their products are popular, and which are in the sales basket? Who do they partner with, and who else is talking about them? There are many ways to exploit Social Media using Competitive Intelligence, but that is another subject.

5. Lead generation

Lead generation is often the hidden magic of social listening because it needs serious thinking and digging around. Boolean search is a great way to search for prospects and track who is talking to each other, and following each other will reveal interesting patterns.

6. Influencer marketing

Find who your most influential brand advocates and manage the process. Look for new influencers. Direct your attention to those influencers in your market and approach them. The first place to look is the influencers promoting your competitors’ products and services.


This article advised that using social listening for competitive intelligence could be a beneficial exercise to better understand your market and customers by examining your competitors, influencers, lead generation, product feedback, customer service, PR, and reputation management.

Let’s talk…

Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.
Home » Blog » Collecting Competitive Insights » Using Social Listening For Competitive Intelligence

What is competitive intelligence?

The collection and analysis of information to make sense of what’s happening, what's next, and what you can do to enhance your competitive advantage.

This is a drawing of the Octopus Intelligence Logo By Octopus Competitive Intelligence, Due Diligence, Competitor Analysls, Market Analysis, Competitor Research and Strategic Business Development to beat your competitors, increase sales and reduce risk

Want to know more about market and competitive intelligence and how it can help you beat your competitors?

We find the answers to beat your competitors, make better decisions, win more business and see what’s next. Since 2008, Octopus has been at the forefront of people-powered competitive intelligence solutions, helping brands, enterprises, high-growth SaaS companies, and startups. Globally, we have undertaken hundreds of competitive intelligence projects, providing straight-talking, actionable intelligence and cutting through the clutter with clear, concise deliverables.

Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.