The evidence is overwhelming. Social media has an effect on buyers in virtually every business sector. B2C and B2B consumers look to Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and other social media channels to review recommendations on everything from shoes to appliances to IT outsourcing. Within businesses, managers are using social media to research products and services to utilize at their companies.
Social Media as Part of Your Enterprise
If you haven’t already, create a corporate Facebook page and Twitter account to highlight your industry expertise and gain loyal followers. How do you gauge whether what you are doing is effective, though? With the growth in social media volume, there are several enterprise level social media management tools available to help your business get a better handle on their online activities and better measure effectiveness of their social media participation both inside and outside the organization.
Here are a few of the products that are available:
- Jive – this social business provider can help drive brand awareness and foster customer loyalty by tracking online conversations relating to your business. Jive also has tools to facilitate online customer service responses, create a social intranet for your employees and spur collaboration and team communication. According to Gartner and Forrester Research, Jive is a dominant player in this market space as they focus on social business both within a company and external to a company
- Chatter – this tool specializes in online collaboration both within organizations and with customers. Chatter’s project management tools allow employees that are dispersed across geographies to streamline work efforts. Sharing features allow internal communications as well as “soft” launches of product news and information to the customer community.
- SalesForce.com – After recently acquiring Radian6 Technologies, SalesForce.com can now offer capabilities for businesses to distribute marketing offers via Twitter or Facebook and then track activities related to the campaign. SalesForce.com is already well established for managing sales leads and customers and is the CRM of choice for many enterprises. This additional feature will fit nicely into their offering for businesses.
So a real life example, lets say you have introduced a new product to your market. It’s announced via traditional channels – trade shows and press releases. The new product announcement is also promoted on your website, with links posted via Facebook and Twitter. With the right social media management tools, you can monitor all of the activity relating to this product.
What is the initial customer response? Are there specific questions or issues coming up? Are customers trying to find where to purchase the product? How many “shares” or “likes” are occurring? Tools like Jive, Chatter and Salesforce will help you anwser these questions.
Photo: Great Beyond