Fortunately, there are technologies that can assist you. First you need a means of finding and collecting online sources of relevant information. Then you need technologies that enable you to store internally such information. The third step is to categorize it and, analyze it. This bunch of different technologies is known as Social Media Analytics (SMA).
There is no doubt that SMA really helps you to dig deep under surface and differentiate between sources of positive and negative sentiment. Also, you can categorize this sentiment based on areas of your business. You can also measure this influence of specific online source to your brand, find key influential authors, spot the trend, etc.
In other words, so you can something about it, and you can do it early before it is too late. And if you just do it for your own corporate benefits this can certainly have short-term effects. The trick is to do it for the benefits of your customers first and they are likely to award you with their loyalties and even forgive you for some future slip-ups. Anyone mentioned company with the apple in their logo?
Regards to all and send me your comments.