We just published The Guide to Social Media Monitoring. Here’s the introduction to the free ebook.

In the rainy season, the Amazon River widens to 48 km (30 mi) and dumps 300,000 cubic metres (11,000,000 cu ft) of water per second into the Atlantic Ocean.

That’s what the social web is like: a massive, fast-flowing torrent of information. In the minute that’s elapsed since you clicked on this post, people around the world have posted 42,000 Facebook status updates and 173,000 tweets.

As you struggle to stay afloat in this flood of data, how do you find the one tweet that might lead to a large contract, the LinkedIn Group that inspires a whole new product line, or the blog post that could permanently damage your brand?

With social media monitoring.

Effective monitoring involves filtering all those conversations using relevant keywords and keyphrases to find the posts and conversations that matter to your business.

It takes self-discipline to talk less and listen more, but a social media monitoring program can revolutionize your business.

Sweeping the entire social web is no easy task, so make sure you carefully research which tool will help you find the conversations that matter. (Here’s a short guide to picking a social media monitoring platform.)

Each of the 8 chapters in our ebook explains what to listen for and suggests keywords to search. As you sort through the resulting posts, you’ll uncover additional keywords to use and realize where the action is happening.

Don’t assume you need to be on the most popular social networks. Social media isn’t just about Twitter and Facebook. For some industries, the best places to interact are blogs, forums and message boards. For others, it might be LinkedIn or niche online communities.

The searches you undertake as part of your listening program will focus your efforts, uncover discussion and dialogue, and help you understand where you should be spending your time and effort to engage the communities you care about.

Read all 8 reasons your business needs social media monitoring.

Free Ebook: The Guide to Social Media Monitoring