How to Set up Notifications When You Need to Engage with Your Social Media

By Aliza Sherman, Danielle Elliott Smith

To stay on top of those mentions or conversations that need your attention or review, put monitoring tools and practices into place. Even when you aren’t online, you need to be aware of what is being said to, and about, you.

You “listen” in social networks mostly by reading. You can read the streams of content that you see when you log in to social channels, but when you’re not there, set up alerts and notifications to let you know when you need to respond.

How to set alerts and notifications on social media

Follow the strategies described in this list to set up alerts and notifications:

  • Google Alerts: These free alerts notify you anytime a name or keyword you’ve chosen is found in news articles, on blogs, or in the Google search engine (so it includes some public posts from forums and social networks). Simply fill out the alerts to make notifications arrive in your inbox.

  • Twitter: The microblogging site allows snippets of conversation to happen 24 hours a day — 140 characters at a time. Your community will often use this tool to reach out with questions, thoughts, and concerns.

    You can use several tools to access Twitter. You can set some of these tools to notify you when designated keywords are mentioned in tweets, such as Echofon, TweetDeck, and HootSuite. You can customize columns in TweetDeck and HootSuite to keep track of other people, trending topics, and even groups.

  • Facebook: This site has both a personal and professional use, allowing you to engage with your audience at any time to hear feedback, share news, and have conversations.

    Use the Pages Manager app for iOS to receive notifications for all pages you manage. You can also receive notifications of mentions and interactions on your Facebook Page via e-mail and on your mobile device.

    From your Facebook Page, go to Account Settings and select Notifications, and then choose ways to be notified (in addition to on Facebook, where you receive all notifications). You can also choose to be notified by e-mail; by push notification, depending on which mobile app you’re using to monitor Facebook; or by text, with additional breakdowns such as types of activities that trigger notifications and time frames for receiving them.

Set up multiple alerts so that you’re notified whenever your brand name is mentioned — even if someone misspells it or uses your Twitter handle or any other variable to mention you, your company, team members, products, services, or related brands. Check out the nearby sidebar for more about setting and monitoring alerts.

Avoid falling behind or having to play catch-up. Missing important mentions exhibits weak customer relationships and a poor understanding of SME. Staying on top of alerts gives you time to respond and, if necessary, address team members to ensure that everyone is on the same page to properly respond.

How to increase efficiency with push notifications for social media

A push notification is the friendly signal that new interactions have taken place on one of your social platforms. These notifications typically arrive via mobile device and, depending on the settings, announce that you’ve been mentioned on Twitter or that someone has liked, or commented on, an update on your Facebook Page, for example. These notifications can also come from social media management (SMM) tools such as HootSuite.

A push notification prompts you to respond. To turn these notifications on or off on your iPhone, iPod Touch, or iPad, follow these steps:

  1. Tap the Settings button on the Home screen.

    Small gears appear on the button.

  2. Tap the Notifications button.

    It looks like a red circle in the middle of a black square.

  3. Scroll down and tap the applications that you want to place in the Notifications Center.

    Apps in the Notifications Center are listed at the top, with others below them. You can toggle this setting on or off by tapping each app.

To turn on push notifications on an Android device, you manage them in an individual app’s settings. (An app may have notifications turned on by default.)

In newer versions of the Android operating system, to disable unnecessary notifications so that you can focus on the ones that matter, simply tap and hold your finger on the notification the next time it pops up. From there, you’ll be directed to the app management screen to deselect the Show Notifications option.

To be effective in SME and to demonstrate presence, avoid the impulse to respond immediately to every single notification. You should be able to see at least part of any comment being made in order to quickly assess its urgency and either respond quickly or put it aside to view later.