Posts Tagged ‘marc meyer’

Social Media Data Management – Privacy, Security and Retention

Tuesday, June 15th, 2010

People in general are jumping on social networks at an amazing rate.  They sign up, add a few photos, post some thoughts, invite friends, take a survey, click on a couple of ads pozing as games and before you know it, that individual has a lot of readily available social information they have volunteered.  Knowingly or not, every click that is made tells more and more about the user.  By joining these networks are you giving up your right to that data?  The privacy camps say its your data and you control it.  The social networks are showing (by their actions) that by signing up and using the site for free, you are effectively paying for use of that social network by providing you data to use.  Whether anonymized of not, that data is extremely valuable to the right advertisers.  Those advertisers have proved they will do about anything to get it.

A few examples: Google states that it does not use your data (search, email, now phone) however their recommendations of people to connect with is eerie.  Facebook uses your data to match advertisers up with.  While they may not give it out (or maybe they do  Anyone with a Twitter feed can find out quite a bit about a person if they were capturing those streams and feeding them into a database.

Are you “paying” to use social networks with your data?  Our moderator this week is a highly sought after social media professional who is a long time contributor to this group.  Ken Burbary is the lead digital and social media strategist for Ernst & Young and is moderating this week’s session on social media data privacy and what companies are actually doing with the data.  Ken brings a wealth of knowledge and, working with highly regulated companies, he brings a hands on perspecitve of the topic.  The topic this week is:

Topic:  Social Media Data Management – Privacy, Security and Retention


Q1)  What customer data do companies collect and use from social media platforms and web sites?

Q2)  How are companies securing and protecting social media data that that they collect?

Q3)  What purposes are companies retaining social media data for? How are they using it?

Please join us this Tuesday 6/15 for a lively conversation on the value of personal data to companies.  The event starts at 12 noon eastern and run for one hour.  As always, the first question will be asked at noon and then every 20 minutes.  Follow along by tracking #sm64 from your favorite Twitter client or simply use our event page at we look forward it!

Crisis Management for BP Using Social Media

Monday, June 7th, 2010

We took a chance on bending the rules a bit on our experiemental deep water drilling platform and kinda got caught.  What’s the big deal? Give us an A for effort?  C’mon, everybody makes mistakes!”

These are the types of musings that  have been entertaining more than 137,000 people on Twitter and millions more on ABC News, CNN, USAToday, Wall Street Journal and more.  Using a fake account, the twitter handle of @BPGlobalPR has been tweeting over-the-top posts that poke fun at BP’s CEO Tony Hayward, his wife and other leutenants at BP as a way to bring attention to the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. 

In contrast, the BP corporate twitter handle has 12,000+ followers and is following 51 people.  How did this happen? 

Why would an oil behemoth like BP think they would have to engage through social media in any meaningful way?  In fact why would an electric company, pharmaceutical company, semiconductor company, etc have to worry about developing a social strategy?  This event and @BPGlobalPR should be a wake up call to every company who produces anything.  Some event will happen at some point and your company will get overrun if you are not prepared. 

What should you do, you ask?  Well, that’s what we asked this week’s moderator Gavin Heaton to work through on this week’s chat.  Gavin gets my bid for two awards this week.  He wins for coolest handle: @ServantofChaos and moderates at the oddest local time yet (2am his local time in Australia).  Coolness aside, Gavin brings years of experience in digital marketing and strategy development and has proven to be a goto person for Brands of all types.  Our topic and questions this week will be:

Topic:  Crisis Management for BP Using Social Media

Q1:  How has @BPGlobalPR affected perception and should they have shut it down?

Q2:  How is BP using social media to address the situation and what should they do better?

Q3:  What can other companies learn from this about managing a crisis & the impact of social media?

The event will begin with Q1 at noon eastern followed every 20 minutes with the next questions.  To follow along and add your POV simply track #sm63 via any Twitter client or follow along via our LIVE page.

Location Based Services & their Value to Corporate Marketers

Monday, May 31st, 2010

Ask any social media or mobile prognosticator and they will tell you that Location Based Services (LBS) were/are one of the hottest trends to watch in 2010.  I’m sure there are some already “going out on a limb” and saying it will be a trend to watch in 2011 as well.  Even though they were all right, LBS still has not lived up to it’s billing yet and its almost half way through the year.  Chances are it will though and we want to explore some of the applications that will take LBS from cute app store add-on to app store “must have”.

Let’s start first by defining what LBS is for those who still are not quite sure.  One way to do this is using the entry from Wikipedia:

 ”A location-based service (LBS) is an information and entertainment service, accessible with mobile devices through the mobile network and utilizing the ability to make use of the geographical position of the mobile device”, Wikipedia

The other way is to just say it in plain english:

“Location Based Service allows a device (mobile, iPad, Kindle, car, etc) to identify your where abouts and offer new opportunities to better service, market, track or sell things where your location makes a difference”, Jason Breed

We are just starting to figure out how best to apply LBS in a way that consumers will use it and in a way that will move the results needle for corporate marketers.  Right now, LBS is mostly being applied to local search, navigation and some social media tools.  Most of what you hear about is consumer oriented and look like (taken directly from Wikipedia entry):

  1. Requesting the nearest business or service, such as an ATM or restaurant
  2. Turn by turn navigation to any address
  3. Locating people on a map displayed on the mobile phone
  4. Receiving alerts, such as notification of a sale on gas or warning of a traffic jam
  5. Location-based mobile advertising

From a consumer’s perspective, this is interesting and something I’ll keep in mind next time I get a craving for a taco.  This kind of thinking is why LBS has not yet become really useful or a “must have”.  This is a very consumer centric approach to providing capability.  Think about it from a corporate perspective for a minute though.  What if:

TAXIs:  you are in New York, it’s raining and your taxi company is the only one who can allow consumers to see where an open taxi is or even “bid” on a trip by seeing what others on the same street corner will pay to get a cab.  When you are running late to an important meeting, there’s a real need to win a taxi by guaranteeing a tip.

Retail Outlets: Imagine knowing who your visitors are and having employees rate their purchasing value.  Next time they come you may treat “high rollers” differentlythan “time wasters”.  Think about that loyalty program for a minute.

Services: add LBS to local search and know when an area has a a lot of people sick, send a mobile flu-shot van.  Identify needs then meet those needs with services on the go.

There are lots of ways to use LBS that will create new opportunities for the most innovative companies early on.  Whether tracking shipments, products, employees, customers, equipment or potential demand with LBS, there are many ways that are just being explored.  Our host this week, Jason Keath, will help us explore the relevance of Location Based Services for businesses.  Jason has his finger on the pulse of “trends to watch” and their application to marketers through his Social Fresh Conferences.  Jason has a knack for creating hot topics and bring the best minds together to help businesses distill where they need to focus their limited resources and time.

 Topic:  Location Based Services & their Value to Corporate Marketers

  1. Will location based services (LBS) lead to real revenue gains for large brands?
  2. Will the future user base of location based services (LBS) look more like Twitter or Facebook?
  3. What is the most significant challenge that locations based servcies (LBS) face?

Join us in this very relevant topic on Tuesday June 1 at noon eastern.  Follow along on Twitter with #sm62 or through our live page at

Quick & Legal: How to Make Social Media Less Scary for the Legal Dept

Monday, May 24th, 2010

There’s a saying in software development that customers want to get their projects done:

Cheap, Fast and Good.

The typical IT joke is that you can have 2 but not all 3.  I have a feeling that’s where the legal department’s position is with the other departments who are deploying social and have a need to engage with their customers.  Where the CEO ideally wants the response to happen Quickly & Legally.  The joke here is that Legal departments say “Quick” OR ”Legal” but not both.  There have been a couple of big brands on the wrong end of that joke lately and therein lies the importance of incorporating the legal department as a founding partner of your social efforts in the beginning rather than trying to “bolt” them on afterwards.

To be fair, there are a lot of reasons that the Legal department should be a significant partner in your efforts.  This deck from Daliah Saper does a solid job identifying all the reasons that mitigating risk in social is important.  Here are just a few:

  • Privacy Laws – Like HIPPA in medical
  • Negligence – in assuming a duty and not following  through on it
  • Trademark – confusing a consumer about your Brand and it’s use
  • Copyright – using/sharing something that’s not yours
  • Discrimination – especially when used in the hiring process & checking up on current employees

The marketing reality though is that Brands simply don’t control their messaging the same way in which they used to.  Responses to outcries from promoters and detractors alike that are measured in days or worse yet weeks is simply unacceptable today.  Speed is of the essence and customers just want to hear the truth.  That puts legal departments, who are in place today to mitigate risk, in a precarious position.  Where their primary job is reviewing the actions of employees it typically takes longer to get tasks completed.  Much of the time now executives who take the time to run through legal are actually opening themselves and their companies up to increased risk of being perceived as non-responsive and contrived (or not authentic).  The damage from being too slow can sometimes be more than acting quickly and genuinely.

What are companies to do?  Our moderator this week, Lucretia Pruitt, has been working on answering this question as well.  A veteran of the digital space, she has had her share of run-ins with the legal debate and has agreed to help all of us work through this.  Following in our tradition of 3 questions spaced 20 mins apart, Lucretia will lead the chat starting at noon eastern with the following questions:

Topic: Quick & Legal: How to Make Social Media Less Scary for the Legal Dept

Q1: How can big companies advocate for less regulation to reflect realities of social media engagement?

Q2: Should you train legal in SM and what does it look like?

Q3: How do you create SM policies/strategies that legal will accept?

We invite you to join in the conversation to share or learn or both!  Follow along by using #sm61 on your favorite Twitter client or simply follow along on our LIVE page.

Facebook Blowback: What’s the Upshot for Social Media?

Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

A hot topic this week that will be the beginning of a series of events around data privacy and social media.  To start it off, it’s helpful to understand the consumer point-of -view and how privacy is perceived and how the major social sites are addressing privacy and data security.

Facebook appears to be the poster child right now for their approach and response to privacy concerns from the industry and from their members.

Your information can’t be made safe on Facebook, but you can make it safer.” says Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols, ITworld

While I could provide my opinion on Facebook, Google’s data privacy mis-hap, etc I think there are enough viewpoints around it to simply pull the best thoughts together as a resource.

Sephoria, from Blogher did a great post on this topic and had this to say:

“….What pisses me off the most are the numbers of people who feel trapped. Not because they don’t have another choice. (Technically, they do.) But because they feel like they don’t. They have invested time, energy and resources into building Facebook what it is. They don’t trust the service, are concerned about it, and are just hoping the problems will go away. It pains me how many people are living like ostriches. If we don’t look, it doesn’t exist, right?? This isn’t good for society. Forcing people into being exposed isn’t good for society. Outing people isn’t good for society, turning people into mini-celebrities isn’t good for society….”

and Jeff Jarvis from his blog, Buzz Machine has this to say:

“They confused sharing with publishing. They conflate the public sphere with the making of a public. That is, when I blog something, I am publishing it to the world for anyone and everyone to see: the more the better, is the assumption. But when I put something on Facebook my assumption had been that I was sharing it just with the public I created and control there. That public is private. Therein lies the confusion.”

Our moderator JD Lasica points out that now the activist organization is lashing out at Facebook attracting support from its over 5 million members to promote the following:

“Facebook recently made a number of changes to its privacy policy that make your profile information public – even if you thought it wasn’t. Many people aren’t even aware of these changes. So we put together a chart to show you what these changes mean for protecting your information.

If enough people understand what these changes are and how they affect them, we can convince Facebook that this is not how we expect our personal information to be treated. Click the buttons below to share this chart with your friends via email, Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.”

To make sense of all this, JD Lasica will be moderating today’s chat on the topic of privacy specifically on Facebook.  We are pleased to have JD as he is one of the founding fathers of social strategy it seems and has been at this well before it was ever referred to as social media.  The topic and questions are below:

TOPIC:  Facebook Blowback: What’s the upshot for social media?

Q1) Has Facebook gone too far with “Open Graph,” infringing on our notions of “private” information?

Q2) What’s the disconnect between the elites and the 425 million users who could care less?

Q3) Marketers are salivating over the troves of FB members’ personal information that has become public. Is this a land mine waiting to go off?

The chat will take place Tuesday 5/18 at noon eastern and you can follow along from any Twitter client by using #sm60 this week or by simply following along at our LIVE page which provides a unique chat experience.

Is Retention the New Acquisition in Social Media?

Monday, May 10th, 2010

Take a look inside your company.  How much is your marketing budget?  Now, how much do you spend on customer service in relation to new customer marketing.  For most companies, the amount spent on new customer acquisition far outweighs the amount spent on retaining exisitng customers. 

Think about your last visit to the mall.  Go into any Sears, Macys, JCPenney, Circuit City or any other large anchor store and who’s the first ones you run into?  The sales associates hit you up at the door and never leave your side, even though you’re just walking through to get to your car.

Companies spend weeks training new employees, teaching them sales skills (and like Glengarry Glen Ross) then send them out to ABC (Always Be Closing).  No one ever asks if you have shopped there before or if you already know what you need.  They just offer ancillary products to upsell. 

Now take a look at the companies mentioned above. One is out of business, two are teetering on bankruptcy, one is doing OK…not great, but OK.  Then look at Best Buy who was able to flip the funnel over.  They have emerged from one of the roughest economic times in history stronger than ever.  When all the competitors are struggling to stay alive, Best Buy is doing very well by industry standards.  Why is this?

One needs to look no further than the doorway to get a sense.  The first thing you see when you enter a Best Buy is the very large, well-marked customer service center just to your left.  Try finding the customer service center in a Sears.  You have to walk around a good bit and ask a couple of people on your trip. 

Think about the context.  Companies spend so much on acquiring new customers and so little on keeping these precious customers once they get them.  Today there are more ways to stay in contact with your customer base, that you have to start making excuses on why not to do it.  Social Media in the great enabler that can help connect those customers who were always mobile, did not run the household but still influenced a significant amount of purchase power. 

To help us better understand the potential of connecting with our existing customers is a well respected and long admired practitioner in the social media space and accomplished author.  Joseph Jaffe will lead the discussion to help us understand the need and benefit of keeping our existing customers unequivically happy.  Joe is a recognized, global authority on the value of a customer and a legend in traditional and digital marketing industries.  The topic and questions this week are:

Topic: Is Retention the New Acquisition in Social Media?

Q1: What might “retention is the new acquisition” refer to in social media?

Q2: What are some of the ways to get customers to purchase again and become ambassadors?

Q3: How can you use existing customers to gain new ones?

Q4: What role do employees play in the promise of flipping the funnel?

This week we will change it up just a little and run with 4 questions instead of 3.  This means we will start right at 12 noon Eastern with Q1 and transition to the next question every 15 minutes.  Please join us Tuesday 5/11 and follow #sm59 or simply use our LIVE Page.

Connecting With Consumers Through Social Media

Monday, May 3rd, 2010

"Take a look from the outside looking in"

The title of this post pretty much sums it up.  So often we get caught up in frameworks and checklists and strategies and everyone is running around looking busy.  Meanwhile, back at ranch where the real work happens, consumers are still being marketed at even online.  How could this be?

It is helpful sometimes to take a step back and take a look at what you are doing from the outside looking in.  Consider how your consumers view you online and where they view you.  You might begin to understand why your social programs are performing the way they are.  So many strategies stop at the tools so you end up with a blog or a Facebook page and the strategist goes home.  Inevitably the same marketer or communications person does what they know and starts blasting messages.    As a result, the consumers that you were trying to get closer to actually end up further away.  To translate this back into social media jargon, you end up with an audience of lurkers (assuming they stay that long) when you are attempting to get those consumers engaged.

Jake McKee

Jake Mckee’s infamous 90-9-1 pyramid comes to mind.  If you do not make it easy, fast and safe for consumers to engage you will end up with more than 90 percent lurkers trolling your content.  On the other hand, if you take the time to create baby steps of engagement like a simple “thumbs up/down”, share this, or even a one question “quick poll” your audience will begin to engage more.  This helps to establish trust as well.  With trust comes responsibility though.  If you allow members to digitally attack each other via comment threads, etc then you will end up with the same 4 people running your site like street dogs marking their territory on trees.  Curating community content to keep it safe will go a long ways for members to want to contribute and connect with greater frequency.

Once they are connecting with higher frequency, what’s your plan then?  What messages do you want those consumers sharing?  Your consumers have 2 experiences with every interaction they have with you.  Those 2 experiences are perception and reality.   If you ask for suggestions, get them and never respond or even acknowledge them, the consumer’s perception is that you really don’t care.  All of these experiences get crafted into a story that is told and re-told online, at dinner parties, at the gym and anywhere else someone brings up your store, brand or product.

If consumers are your storytellers, then shouldn’t you have a plan to help shape that story every chance you get?  Two main themes are emerging: 1) enable consumers to connect with you more frequently and 2) have a plan in place to help mold their story about you once you do connect.  Sound straightforward?  If it does then you have never had to a) manage a community first hand, b) never been responsible for results or c) all of the above.

By design, our moderator has a lot of experience doing both.  Kyle Lacy is the head of Brandswag and a highly sought after social media practioner for businesses.  Kyle will lead a discussion around how to better connect with consumers by converting more passive consumers into active consumers of your brand and what to do once they become active.  This discussion will follow our weekly Tuesday event schedule taking place 5/4 at noon Eastern.    The topic and questions will be:

Topic: Connecting With Consumers Through Social Media

Q1) What are ways to move customers up the interactive chain from lurker to influencer?

Q2) What’s the value of storytelling vs. messaging?

Q3) How can you get customers to take action on your behalf and tell the story for you?

The event will begin with Q1 at noon eastern followed every 20 minutes with the next questions.  To follow along and add your POV simply track #sm58 via any Twitter client or follow along via our LIVE page.

Managing the Marketing Mix: Which Channel is More Effective?

Monday, April 26th, 2010

Just because you have Digital in your title does not make you Interactive

On its surface, this topic is a “status quo” topic, one that fits into the traditional advertising model that says radio, television and print are channels therefore the Internet is a channel too.  Agencies and old-school marketers feel comfortable when discussing digital as just another channel.  They figure if a portion of their budget allocated to digital and they tweak their messaging to match the medium then Whoalla! we are all new-age digital marketers.

The problem with this approach is it assumes consumers are the same and want the same messaging pushed at them to interfere with their online entertainment just like they consume television or radio entertainment.  Consumers have changed!  Consumers do not shop the same, communicate the same, consume content the same nor do they react the same to advertising.  When it comes down to it this topic cannot be about marketers adding a new channel, it has to be about those marketers who can adopt to changing consumer behaviors and those who cannot.

Consumers no longer want to be talked at, they want to be engaged with.  They want to see who prepares the food and talk with the baggage handlers, they want to feel they have a voice in determining the features of their next car model and want to help select what charities their soda maker donates to.   The majority of companies today are not set up to handle this new consumer.  Decades of closed systems and legally approved content are getting in the way of companies trying to interact with the consumer.

So what is this post about then?  Even though consumers are changing their behaviors by the second, companies can not move that quickly.  Companies need to have some transition period to move from traditional to digital and it’s not just in the way they advertise.  This is a cultural shift,  a systems shift, a shift in processes and approvals to a more distributed workforce.  This is much more than simply a messaging shift.

This post is about transitioning.  Many times, the only way to move the needle or to convince traditional executives is with proof.  That proof comes in comparing what they already know and are familiar with and in a way that they understand like reports and measurements that can compare traditional apples with digital apples (apples to apples).  If you measure traditional marketing with reach (ie. magazine has 100k circulation + 2 times pass along and costs $5k) and sales (call volume rises when our infomercial airs and conversion increases 12%) then your digital marketing reports cannot use language like followers, subscribers and linkbait, they must be consistent.  The good news is with proven success comes additional funding and a higher tolerance for experimentation.

Once you are able to measure and report consistently across traditional/digital and begin to show positive results, how do you determine how much is the optimal amount to spend on each?  Again, a fully integrated interactive marketer does not allocate a bucket of monies per channel.  Integrated messaging and consumer engagement is determined by the need at the time.  If a customer makes an online mess, it may require an online video response or it may require an actual television ad to express your point-of-view.  In order to stay flexible and meet your daily needs you cannot have a pre-allocated budget based on channels that was set 9 months ago.

In staying with the theme though, you need to be able to show value as you transition from traditional advertising to more integrated.  You have to show that any investment is worth the return before executives will release additional funds and approve more experiential marketing.  In light of that, what is the right mix?  Ford transitioned 25% of their marketing budget to social.  Seems like an arbitrary number but what is the right mix for your company as it transitions from what it was to what it needs to be?

To help us get a better handle on the right marketing mix for your company, we are bringing in a moderator this week who not only understands the measurement and monitoring side, she also understands the business side and promotes the advancement of companies into a more integrated marketing approach.  Amber Naslund, the Director of Community at Radian6, understands organizational change is just as important as technical change is and knows how to get people there.  While there is before digital (traditional) and after, more importantly there is a during or a transition that not many can talk to except Amber.  This week’s topic and supporting questions are as follows:

Topic:  Managing the Marketing Mix: Which Channel is More Effective?

Q1:  How do you know your traditional marketing efforts are effective?

Q2:  How do you know your digital marketing efforts are effective?

Q3:  What is the right budgeting mix between traditional & digital?

Be sure to join us Tuesday April 27 at noon Eastern and participate by following #sm57 from any Twitter client or simply goto our LIVE page during the event.

Culture Shift: Is Your Company Ready To Go Social?

Monday, April 19th, 2010

"not everyone should karaoke either"

Social media is on the minds of every marketer in corporate america today.  Whether good or bad, they are certainly at least thinking about it.  In fact, according to a new study just released by Social Media Examiner, 91% of marketers are using social media in some capacity.  After social media makes it’s way through the marketing department, then what?  What happens to the rest of the company?

From that same research marketers are reporting exposure, leads, better customer service, reduced costs and more as benefits of being engaged.  The only problem is that exposure is the only benefit that stays in marketing.  The other listed benefits affect many departments across the organization.  So what’s happening with that adoption?  While marketers were forced by their consumers into social engagement, other departments may not be feeling the pressure…yet.

How do you socially infuse your company?  It’s the same discussion that has been around for a couple of years at least, however it feels a bit more real right now.  There has to be more to it than getting your company’s name on twitter or setting up the “Facebook page” as a catch all.  There has to be more than an executive decree to become “social” and there has to be something more substantive than 3 front-line employees in a dark corner somewhere taking some social initiative.  Maybe it’s all three or a smaller combination of them.  John Bell from Ogilvy PR spoke to Lucas Watson from P&G recently and had some solid insight.  Lucas, Global Team Leader for Digital Business Strategy at P&G, had three key points when he was asked how he gets his teams to embrace social for the first time:

1. Get them out of the office. Take them somewhere provocative like to a startup’s office or to the Googleplex or somewhere where they can feel and see the excitement of doing things differently. Don’t try and convince them in a conference room at P&G behind a Powerpoint slide

2. Get a digital champion on the brand. Every team needs an enthusiast who will push and keep challenging the usual way. We constantly shift between making digital everyone’s job and embedding it via true experts. Truth is both are necessary and the balance will change over time as more people make digital a part fo their jobs.

3. Show them the ROI to inform marketing modeling. P&G is know for their marketing modeling. This simply confirms what each of us not inside the company would guess and that is that you have to have a ‘pretty good’ story of both the performance and ROI to convince hard core marketers like those at an FMCG (fast moving consumer goods).

I personally agree with these points with a minor exception on point two.  Instead of making it “everyone’s job” or leaning on the expert (which exonerates everyone else) make it a department requirement and let each department come up with their own way to handle it.  Depending on the department, they will self-organize, take turns, hire someone, etc.  Social cannot be forced on people just like not everyone should have to Karaoke at the bar just because it’s there.  Some people enjoy it and some are genuinely good at it.  It should be up to the department lead to figure out how best to manage it within their own environments.

These three points are a good start, but what else can companies to encourage social innovation within their companies?  Ask any salesperson and they will tell you that compensation dictates behavior, I just don’t think that applies to social though (and I’m a sales dude).  Socially infusing your company will take initiative from four equal directions IMHO:

  1. bottom up
  2. top down
  3. outside in
  4. inside out

To help us put some more meat on that bone, we have asked social magnate Trey Pennington to moderate this week’s chat. Trey comes with an impressive background of teaching, implementing and consulting for some great brands and focuses much of his time on using technology to make meaningful relationships with real people. For companies, it requires a new mindset—a huge cultural shift. It’s filled with huge opportunities.  These opportunities are available to everyone but not everyone is ready.  Spend some time with us on Tuesday 4/20 at noon EST to make sure you build your checklist of things you can do to get your company ready to go social.  The questions will be asked every 20 minutes starting at 12 noon then hold on to your seats as this topic will certainly be fast paced:

Title:  Culture Shift: Is your company ready to go Social?
:  Employees or Management: Who drives the social culture of a company?
Q2:  What comes first, executive investment or employee initiative?
Q3: Create a checklist that companies can use to become more social.

To participate, follow along on Twitter or you favorite Twitter client ( is mine) using #sm56 or simply goto our live page at

Managing the Effectiveness of Your Social Programs

Monday, April 12th, 2010

Effective social media programs? Yeah right, how would you ever prove it?

That’s the struggle of corporate social media marketers.  There are tons of systems that help you listen and monitor, there are a lot of publishing tools that let you update multiple accounts and personas in the same dashboard, hundreds of social platforms and a few reporting tools.  The problem is they are all just that, all disparate systems that are not connected and certainly not integrated. 

So back to the question, How do you manage the effectiveness of your campaign?  If you are like most social marketers today, there is little support for the social manager who is typically part of the marketing or communications team.  Left to their own devices, they usually use the free tools and simply infer the results that they can patch together. 

There is a new suite of tools coming onto the market that proclaim Social Media Managment Systems (SMMS) that begin to couple two or three components together.  Here’s the problem, even the specific SMMS solutions don’t provide a real look.  The current SMMS solutions are tools.  They were created as tools to measure other tools.  What’s missing are the actual use cases, the tools that marketers need to track, analyze and report campaigns.  In general, here’s a list of what’s missing:

  1. Central Database – to pull the results together and create a single platform to analyze and report from
  2. Proper Reporting – that integrates the different systems and provides true enterprise analytics and reports
  3. Advanced Sentiment Analysis – not just positive and negative either.
  4. CRM Integration
  5. Traditional Marketing Comparison

Take a look at that last point.  To truly understand the effectiveness of your social programs, you have to have something to compare them against.  Think about it, a platform that could listen, suggest influencers (based on advanced sentiment), provide a place to respond from, track internal links and their paths/subpaths, manage digital ad spend, then monitor traditional ad spends, effectiveness and finally compare and recommend an optimized marketing mix based on real-time results and all at an enterprise scale.  The panacea of managing the effectiveness of your social media programs.  (From my experience, I have only seen this solution from one provider, Accenture Interactive (Disclaimer: I work for AI)).

The reality is that only the top brands require the type of solution mentioned above.  Every marketer has unique needs and unique results that will all have different values for each marketer’s brand.  There is one marketer that has the experience to help us work through what’s most appropriate for all needs.  That marketer is Tac Anderson.  Tac has experienced the brand side at HP and the agency side from his current position at Waggener Edstrom.  He will lead the discussion around the following topic: 

Topic:  Managing the Effectiveness of Your Social Programs

Q1:  What type of planning should go into your social media campaigns? What is your process?
Q2:  What metrics should you always be looking at?
Q3:  What should always be on your scorecard to measure effectiveness? Are there any constants?

We invite you to join the conversation on Tuesday 4/13 at 12 noon EST by following #sm55 from any Twitter client or from our LIVE site.