Knowledge Base/Social/Social Tools

Social Monitor

Nate Baker
posted this on October 28, 2011 03:43 PM


Social Monitor

Social > Monitor


In Social Monitor, you can set up a search for any keyword phrase and, within minutes, receive real-time social mentions for your search term. Many popular websites are capable of being searched by Monitor, including Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, blogs and message boards. With Social Monitor, you can keep an eye on sentiment for a brand, participate in conversation through Social Stream, report through Report Wizard and more.

Case Study

Let's say that you're managing a client with products in several different countries. You can program social searches in more than two dozen languages, including Russian, Italian, French, Arabic and Chinese. You can filter by author, sentiment and source. You can even return results based on the number of Twitter followers an author has. And because you can set up a social search for any term, you can use the Social Monitor to keep up with the competition, scout the social web for product ideas, discover new industry blogs, identify influencers for SEO link building — really, whatever you can think of.

Once you've created a search, Social Monitor has the ability to automatically assign positive, negative or neutral sentiment to each mention. Or, if Social Monitor missed the mark, you can change the sentiment yourself. In either case, Social Monitor gives you the ability to see the conversations occurring around a term and, at a glance, see the general mood around those conversations.

Once you've pulled down some mentions, you can quickly turn those mentions into a PDF report to display who's talking about your brand and what the temperature is — all without leaving Raven.

Create New Search

  1. Navigate to Social > Monitor.
  2. Click the New Search button.

  3. Add a Search Term: Enter the keyword phrase you want to discover mentions for. To search for an exact match, use quotation marks around the phrase or use search operators to widen or narrow your search.

  4. Choose a search provider. By default, Social Monitor searches work by discovering mentions on social networks, but if you want to keep an eye on a specific RSS feed for mentions of a phrase, choose the Custom RSS option. More information on Custom RSS searches can be found below.
  5. Set your advanced settings. Before saving your search, several options are available to add more specificity to Social Monitor. Click the Advanced tab to modify these settings. For more information on each setting, see the Advanced Settings section.
  6. Click the Save button.

Social Monitor will pull data from the point that you create your search forward. We are not able to display historic mentions and searches are able to pull up to 1,000 mentions per day. To edit a search, click the gear icon next to the search and click the Edit option.

Advanced Settings


When adding or editing a search, click the Advanced tab to modify advanced settings for a search.

  • Title: Give your search a name other than the search terms in use. This will replace the display name in reports, in the search listing and on the search's detail page.
  • Daily Alerts: Toggle this option to be alerted when new mentions are discovered. You can manage your notifications in Preferences > Change Notifications.
  • Post Author: Enter a name to narrow search results to posts by a certain author.
  • Language: Select a language from the dropdown menu. Default is set to English. This option can only be changed when creating a search.
  • Sentiment: Only show search results automatically marked with Unknown, Positive, Negative or Neutral sentiment.

Custom RSS Sources


You can add RSS feeds to be included as a source for your searches. When creating a bew search, click Custom RSS under Search Providers. Instead of the regular sources that would be searched, Social Monitor will look for your search term in the content of the RSS feeds added here. Click the X to remove a custom RSS source and + to add an additional RSS source.

Delete Searches

To permanently remove a Social Monitor search from your Raven account, click the gear icon next to the search in Social Monitor and choose the Delete option. This will remove all of your data for that search.

Search Techniques

General Limitations

  1. Each search is limited to 200 characters.
  2. Each search is limited to five uses of the OR operator.
  3. Use a space rather than an AND operator. AND is implied.
  4. OR must be capitalized.
  5. Avoid searches with both an OR operator and an implied AND operator.
  6. You can't use the Twitter @mentions syntax with other keywords, phrases or operators. You can only search for mentions of one twitter username per search.
  7. You can't use the website syntax with other keywords, phrases or operators. You can only search for mentions of one website per search.

  8. You can't edit the search terms after it has been added but you can create a new search.

Search for a Website

Pulling mentions of a website requires a specific search syntax. To pull mentions of a website in Social Monitor, create a search where the only string of characters is link: followed by the domain without any spaces. Due to a limitation with our data partner, you can't include any other search terms or operators in this type of search.

For example, if you wanted to discover all mentions of, you would enter as a new search, without any operators or additional searches.

If a search includes is setup using the text "" without the link: syntax or if there is a space after the colon, then mentions of this website will not be pulled in.

This syntax looks for the exact string of characters after link: so add your search as rather than link: or link: for more comprehensive results. This syntax also supports URLs so you can also add a search for for mentions of this page. Social Monitor also follows any shortened or minimized links such as twitter's links to the original link, so be sure to use the original link in Social Monitor rather than a shortened URL.

If you are tracking a link that may be shared using multiple URLs, consider pulling out required string of text across all links. For instance, to track you can simply setup as search for link:M8k8j3OJGcU.

Search for a Twitter Mention

Pulling twitter @mentions require their own search syntax.To pull in mentions for a Twitter username using Social Monitor, create a search where the only term is the Twitter username, including the @ sign. Due to a limitation with our data partner, you can't include any other search terms or operators in your search.

For example, if you wanted to discover all mentions of the Raven Tools account on Twitter, you would enter @RavenTools as a new search, without any operators or additional searches.

If a search includes is setup using the text "raventools" without the @ sign, Twitter mentions will not be pulled in, only strict matches for the word. You can't combine searches for Twitter mentions with other searches. A search for "@raventools OR raventools" would be invalid and Twitter mentions of the Twitter account would not be pulled in.

Search for Keywords and Phrases

Simply add one keyword if you want mentions of that one keyword. Or add a phrase between quotation marks for mentions of just that exact phrase.

Search Operators

You can also use two Boolean search operators with keywords and phrases: (OR and -) Add a space between keywords to imply a search for both items in any configuration. Add quotation marks around multiple keywords to search for that exact phrase. OR must be capitalized. Here are some examples:

OR: Searching for "dog food" OR "cat food" would result in posts that mention either the exact phrase "dog food" or the exact phrase "cat food."

- (minus sign): Searching for "dog food" -cat would return results that mention "dog food" but would omit those that include the keyword "cat."

Searching for "dog food" cat would result in posts that mention both the phrase "dog food" and the keyword cat. Similarly, searching for dog cat would yield results that include both keywords in any configuration.

Avoid Searches With Both an OR operator and an Implied AND Operator

Here's an example. A search for "tree house OR dog" may fail or cause unintended results. The space between tree and house is an implied AND operator, which means our system doesn't know if it should search for tree AND (house OR dog), (tree AND house) OR dog, or even "tree house" OR dog.

In cases where you are searching in the format a b OR c, you can further specify a search with quotation marks or an additional OR operator:

  1. "a b" OR c
  2. a OR b OR c

Additionally, you can turn the complex search into two separate searches like so:

  1. a
  2. b OR c

Or like so:

  1. a b (the AND is implied)
  2. c

Search Details

Once a search has been created in Social Monitor, mentions will start to appear in real-time from that point forward. Social Monitor does not pull historic data — only new mentions from the time that your search was created and onward from there. To view a search, click the search term to view its collected mentions. Keep in mind that Social Monitor searches can be modified with filters and additional search criteria. To change the options for your Social Monitor search, you can edit it in the following places:

  • From Social > Monitor: Click the gear icon to the right of a search and then choose the Edit option.

  • From Within a Search: When viewing data in a Social Monitor search you can also click the Edit button in the sidebar to edit the search.




If you've chosen English as your search language, Social Monitor automatically assigns a positive, neutral or negative sentiment to each mention. If your mention is incorrectly categorized, you can change sentiment manually by clicking the appropriate option below each mention.

Hide Mentions

Mentions that are undesirable or irrelevant can be permanently or temporarily hidden from view. To hide a single mention, click the Hide link beneath that post. Alternatively, you can use the Hide option in the gear menu to hide a single mention.

If you want to hide multiple mentions in a single search, select the checkboxes next to each mention you wish to hide and click the Bulk Actions menu. Choose Hide Mention from the menu and click Apply to hide all of the selected mentions.

Filtering and Sorting


Users can filter and sort their mentions based on several criteria through menus in the sidebar:

  • Visibility: From the Visibility selector you can choose to show or exclude the results you have manually hidden.
  • Sort Results: From the Sort Results dropdown menu you can filter to newest date, oldest date, positive sentiment first, negative sentient first, most reach or least reach.
  • Source: By default, all Monitor searches will pull data from all available sources. To limit your sources, choose one or more from this listing. The available sources are: Blog Search, Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, Boards, Custom, Website.
  • Twitter Reach: If searching for mentions on Twitter, the returned mentions can be filtered by the Twitter following of authors who meet your search criteria. To add this filter, choose one of the entries from the Twitter Reach dropdown menu.

Users can also change the amount of mentions per page using the Table Settings icon. Choose whether to display 10, 25 or 50 mentions per page by clicking the number next to Pagination in this menu.

Domain Exclusions


If you're consistently getting bad mentions from a particular source, you can exclude that source from ever appearing in your Social Monitor searches by using Domain Exclusions. Domain Exclusions are managed by the Tool Options button and choosing Domain Exclusions from the menu.

To add a new Domain Exclusion, click the New Domain Exclusion button on this page. Enter the website that you would like to exclude, choose the scope – Account, Website or Search – and click Save. All mentions from this domain will be removed from your listing. Exclusions can also be created using the gear menu next, accessible next to each mention.

Mention Options


Beneath each mention are three commonly-used options for working with mentions in Social Monitor:

  • Hide: Hide this mention in Social Monitor. This accomplishes the same result as the Hide Mentions option in Bulk Actions and the Hide option in the gear menu.
  • Add to Link Manager: Add the search result link to Link Manager. This will add the permalink to the result to Link Manager, but will not add any links contained within that result.
  • View Original Post: Click the timestamp to view the mention on its respective network.


Date Range


By default, Social Monitor will show you mentions from the previous 30 days. You can change the range of days that you'd like to view mentions for by clicking the Date Range button next to Tool Options. You will only see mentions from the point you setup your search and not mentions before then.

Statistics Bar


At the top of each page in Raven's Social Monitor tool is a statistics bar, displaying information for All Mentions, Positive Mentions, Negative Mentions and Neutral Mentions, as well as a comparison to the previous period. By default, these metrics will display data for the last 30 days.

Users can hide statistics by clicking the Tool Options button and choosing Hide Stats from the menu. To change the date range of your statistics, use the Date Range button at the top of the page.

Interact with Mentions

Options for interacting with individual mentions users can be found in the gear menu next to each post. This menu shows options for standard Social Monitor operators such as Hide and View. In addition to those operators, this menu also offers several other options, divided in to Social Monitor Options, System Options and Ignore Domain.

The System Options integrate with other areas of Raven and include the following:

  • Add Task: Add this mention as a Task in Task Manager. You can use this option to assign a mention to another user on your account, with instructions on what to do with that mention.
  • Add Link: Add this mention user as a link in Link Manager.

The Ignore Domain menu allows users to add domains to Domain Exclusions without needing to leave the Mentions view. Clicking any option – Search, Website or Account – will remove all mentions from the domain associated with the mention you're interacting with. The difference is in the scope of the exclusion: Search excludes from just the search, Website excludes from the entire Campaign and Account excludes for all of your Campaigns.

PDF Reporting

You can report on a Social Monitor searches in Report Wizard. Here's how:

  1. Navigate to Report > Report Wizard.

  2. Create a new report or edit an existing one.
  3. Expand the Social category and add a Social Monitor module.

  4. Select a saved search from the Search menu. Then filter the search results how you'd like. The report will show results available according to the date range of the report.

  5. Click the Save Changes button.
  6. Click the Run Report or Save and Close button.

Reading Your Report

A Social Monitor report will contain a graph showing the overall results for a search, as well as the number of total mentions, mentions per day, sentiment values and sentiment meter. The report will also contain a table with information about the 200 most recent mentions from the search you're reporting on.


Usage and Billing


From Social > Monitor, we'll display usage information in the header. Click the numbers to be sent to details in Main Settings > Usage. Our Pricing & Plans page lists the amount of Social Monitor searches that are included in your plan as well as the overage for additional searches.

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