Earlier in the week I hosted a conference call put on by HARO (Help A Reporter Out).  HARO was started by Peter Shankman as a way for reporters in need of content to connect with subject matter experts.  The call was about how business can leverage social media to increase sales, gain clients and improve customer service.

The call was very informative and introduced me to some great social media best practices.  However, there was one concept that really spoke to me and I have been thinking of it’s implication and benefits all week.  It is the concept of “listening at the point of need”.

To me, this is the core of social media for business, job seekers and anyone else looking to network.  We all know that social media is about being part of the conversation.  What I think we forget is that a good conversation involves both speaking and listening.

So how do I listen more?  Once I am listening how will I recognize the point of need? It seems that listening is simply being aware of what is being said about you, your firm or your industry.  The point of need might be a bit tricky.  I imagine these ques will be subtle and unique to each client, applicant and contact.

Regardless of the how, it is a practice I am starting today.  I will keep you posted as this concept becomes more clear and I may even post a case study once I have one.  For now I would like to start a discussion about listening at the point of need.  What does it mean to you?