Blog 1: Listening to k-pop (fans)

K-pop fans quite obviously love to listen to k-pop. But they also love to talk about k-pop. They have a lot to say about songs, comeback concepts, Idols, Entertainment companies, concerts, and even other fans.
All of this “talking” they do online holds a lot of information that can help companies and idols improve. But how to get all the information? Where is it all hiding? what is the most efficient way to get it?

The answer is social media listening tools. But which ones? It’ll depend on which social media platforms hold the highest mentions of the Idol or group in question. If you aren’t sure ones those are, then you can use sites like Brand24 to get an idea of how of the level of traffic related to your subject on a variety of platforms. Or you can control which platforms the fans use by setting up verified accounts.

Sites like SocialBlade can help you track the growth and activity of your official accounts. While it won’t give you as much detail as the built as the proprietary analytics tools that most social media platforms have, Social blade does allow you to see basic information for multiple platforms in one site.

But say you want details. You want to see the nitty gritty without spending hours searching for it. You can use the proprietary and built in analytics tools like YouTube analytics and twitter’s Hootsuite. These can allow you to see a lot more information about your target demographics, You could see countries of origin, genders, age ranges, and more which can all help you to better understand their views and preferences. Plus some of these tools can even help filter other’s comments so you can quickly read through what fans have to say without having to read through repetitive messages.
It’s nice to hear how much you’re loved but sometimes you don’t want to scroll through a hundred different tweets proclaiming their love for you just to see the 3 tweets with questions or constructive criticism.

No matter what approach you use, there are tools for it.
Personally I would use Hootsuite and SocialBlade to monitor and schedule 2 manual checks a day for recent posts and mentions on any platform that the group/idol has official profiles on. Twitter seems to be the main hub for most K-pop fans just after Fancafe (there are currently no tools that monitor fancafe from what I can find) and general details are what’s most useful for other platforms.
Given that most groups and Idols have accounts on 5-6 platforms on average and many have even more then that, I think it would be hard to find any one tool that would be able to monitor all of them properly.
And while it can be difficult to manage and stay on top of that many social media platforms, it would be overwhelming and too time consuming to have a monitoring tool for each platform. In some ways it is easier to have just a few tools to help and use them in combination with manual checks.

Sometimes, you’ll have no choice but to manually some social media platforms because they just can’t be monitored by external tools such as VLive and Fancafe and the Amino app. And should an entertainment company decide to make a unique social app for the fans of an idol/group to use such as BTS’s WeVerse app or VAV’s self titled app, then I strongly recommend making sure the app is built with an analytics tool of it’s own. You’ll be grateful to have it in the long term.

Good luck with your monitoring and I hope the fans can inspire you like you inspire them everyday.

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