Active listening is defined in Wikipedia as:
Active listening is an intent "listening for meaning" in which the
listener checks with the speaker to see that a statement has been correctly
heard and understood. The goal of active listening is to improve mutual understanding.
The premise is that listening must become a priority in order to use the
Web2.0 tools successfully. I think it is a pretty critical marketing practice
despite what technology tools you are using.
Allison Fine in her book Momentum notes: "Listening requires genuine interest in
what that person is saying and a willingness to change as a result of what was
said." She gives examples of the listening deficits, but also the ways that
social media tools can facilitate listening. She acknowledges that it takes time
to listen and that there is no way around it. (more) (ed: emphasis added by me)
Beth’s post goes on and outlays exactly how you can improve your Internet listening skills. If you are in public relations or involved in a non profit, this is a great resource. Go read it.