Sweet 16: Best brand monitoring tools

What are people saying about your brand?

That’s the first and most important question in any proactive reputation management strategy. You can’t take a step forward if you don’t know where you are.

That’s what brand monitoring is all about. These tools are like a finger on the market’s pulse, delivering essential information about how the online world views your business.

The time-tested tools we’ve listed here all perform well. Each provides a different view of your brand’s reputation. Depending on your budget and your overall online presence, you’re likely to find that two, three, or more of them make uniquely valuable contributions to your reputation management strategy.

Here are some of the tools companies like yours rely on.

6 essential tools for tracking brand mentions

You never know where someone will share impressions of your company online. These tools scour the web, reporting on what people are saying and where they are saying it.

This monitoring tool is great for keeping tabs on your brand and on general market trends. And it’s completely free. Just set up notifications for relevant search terms.

This free service has a blind spot when it comes to social media and it isn’t always 100% reliable, especially for smaller brands. It’s not a full solution, but it can help you stay in the loop by monitoring company and industry news. Use it alongside other tools.

Price: Free.

This tool alerts you when your business is mentioned online – including on social media. Mention’s comprehensive reporting feature helps you analyze sentiment, compare data, and focus on distinct topics so you can achieve better understanding of the chatter in your niche.

Mention is especially valuable when you’re analyzing the competition. Seeing where competitors are mentioned can help you decide where to pitch your own story.

The free version of Mention has limits, but many smaller companies find it just right for their needs.

Price: From $25 per month. A 14-day free trial and limited free plan are available.

This robust brand-monitoring tool provides influencer scoring metrics that can be invaluable if your marketing mix relies upon social media and influencers.

Brand24 is more expensive than Mention, but innovative features like newsletter and podcast monitoring make it a good value.

Price: From $49 per month. A 14-day free trial is available.

All of these tools track online mentions of your company. BrandMentions adds a business intelligence feature to the mix. This feature helps you research your audience, identify content trends, and find influencers.

Pricing suggests that BrandMentions is aimed primarily at corporate customers, but the company also offers a white label plan that agencies can use to add new offerings to clients.

Price: From $99 per month.

Awario provides mention monitoring and analytics, but what really sets it apart is its unique Leads module. This powerful feature helps you discover potential customers on social media.

Awario’s advanced algorithms identify prospects on multiple platforms based on your description of your company’s products and services. Awario delivers great bang for the buck, especially for B2C companies.

Price: $24 per month.

All of these platforms monitor your brand across the web and social media. Meltwater adds a PR component to the mix.

Meltwater helps you search for journalists who cover your industry so you can be sure you are pitching your company’s story to the right person. With Meltwater, you can also distribute press releases and measure earned media coverage.

Price: Contact company for a quote.

3 powerful review monitoring tools

Consumers identify reviews from other users as the most credible resource when making buying decisions. That’s why it’s essential to keep track of your brand’s reputation on online review platforms. The best tools in this niche allow you to respond quickly and publicly to negative reviews, publicize positive reviews, and generate more online evaluations to boost your brand.

Online reviews require immediate attention. That’s why you need a notification system that alerts you so you can respond proactively when your business is rated on the internet’s myriad review websites.

Reviewshake brings reviews from all those sites together in one place. You can set up multiple kinds of notifications and review summaries to keep your company up-to-date. Reviewshake empowers your team to respond, set up review invitation campaigns, share reviews, and analyze results.

Price: From $39 per month. A 14-day free trial and limited-feature free version are available.

The G2 website focuses mostly on software companies. If you are in the IT business this is a listing you can’t afford to disregard.

G2 has established a comprehensive system that identifies and screens out fraudulent reviews. That’s why so many people consider it a reputable source of information.

Price: Free.

Trustpilot is a consumer review website that covers a broad range of categories.

The site’s free plan for vendors allows you to claim your business profile, respond to reviews, and access basic performance reports. Upgrade to a paid plan for advanced features like review invitations, advanced data analysis, and widgets.

Price: From $199 per month. A basic free plan and pay-as-you-go add-ons are available.

4 tools for monitoring social media

Social media sites and apps account for more than 50 percent of internet traffic – and the percentage is growing. That’s why social media monitoring is an essential part of any online reputation management strategy. The rich social media environment is more than just mentions. The best tools also identify forums and influencers where your brand is a hot topic.

Hootsuite is a comprehensive solution for monitoring brands and industries on social media. This tool will help you to keep up with trends while identifying influencers and thought leaders who can help you position your brand and make connections within your community.

In addition to reputation management, Hootsuite offers a variety of solutions for managing your company’s social media presence. The tool is known for its ease of use and a slew of integrations to help you streamline reputation management.

Price: $19 per month. A 30-day free trial is available.

Unlike Hootsuite, which assists with all aspects of social media management, Talkwalker focuses on doing one thing well: social listening. Features of this innovative tool include real-time tracing, support for multiple languages, and monitoring of millions of websites.

Talkwalker even includes an AI component that recognizes images so you can see where your logo is being used across the web. Reporting and sentiment analysis are among the tool’s core features.

Price: From $9,000 per year. A free alerts feature is available.

This popular social media publishing platform also offers listening functions.

Sprout Social is known for its ease of use. Key features include audience analysis, trend identification, and customer research.

This tool can be a bit pricey, but it’s a good value if you intend to use all of its many features.

Price: $99 per user per month. A 30-day free trial is available.

This social media management platform includes a unique feature: a social inbox that provides an easy way to organize and keep an eye on all your brand mentions.

In addition to standard listening and search features, Agorapulse also offers comment monitoring for Facebook and Instagram ads.

Price: From $99 per month. A 15-day free trial and limited free version are available.

3 top SEO monitoring tools

Your team works hard on your company’s products and services. It would be a shame if customers couldn’t find you. That’s what SEO is for: making sure your company is visible in search engine results pages. These tools can help.

Buzzsumo helps you amplify your content and boost your SEO ranking by helping you discover relevant topics, keywords, and influencers.

In addition to helping you analyze articles and posts, Buzzsumo can also set up a notification system for brand mentions, competitor news, and topics that are of interest to your business and its customers.

Price: $99 per month. A 30-day free trial is available.

This uniquely valuable tool allows you to monitor the keywords your website ranks for and the backlinks you receive while gaining insights into your competitors’ SEO strategies.

Ahrefs is the best tool for keyword research and content discovery. Additional features help you monitor your website’s reputation and health.

Price: From $99 per month.

SEMrush is an online visibility-management platform that helps you monitor and boost your brand through SEO, social media, content marketing, and paid ads.

This Swiss Army knife tool lets you perform unlimited research, analyzing everything from SEO keywords to the competition’s social media advertising strategy. SEMrush also offers a brand monitoring feature for websites and social media.

Price: $119 per month. A seven-day free trial is available.

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