You did it! You managed to wrangle a few quid from your Head of Comms to invest in Social Insights for 2017. Well done. (Not that you’re entirely sure what ‘social insights’ really means though… something to do with re-tweets and likes, right?)
But now you have a pretty daunting task ahead of you … which social platform gets your time, effort, and hard-earned budget? A quick Google search brings back pages of articles highlighting the top tools for brand tracking / audience listening / improving results / influencer engagement / ecommerce /etc.
Hopefully this snapshot will help speed up the process and save you from falling down a few rabbit holes.
First, what is your customer life-cycle and how does social fit in? Do you have a ‘help team’ on Twitter or an ecommerce platform? What sorts of data will you need to track from each phase of the cycle?
Second, what are the “big questions” at each phase? What insights will help the teams within your business work more effectively and efficiently?
Third, who do you want to listen to and engage with? How do they act, how do they talk, what do they already think of your brand and what do you want them to think?
Finally, don’t keep it to yourself! Who else within your organisation would benefit from insightful data? (Here’s a clue – marketing, customer experience, ecommerce, product development, research, creative, sales …and the list goes on.) Ultimately, more colleagues on board = more resource and more support from the wider business.
To reiterate, there are a lot of social platforms out there, and they all offer slightly different things. That’s why it’s crucial to explore the above questions with the relevant people in your organisation before agreeing to a single sales pitch.
When choosing a platform, don’t sign anything unless it’s clearly able to deliver exactly what you need:
- The right data sets for the right teams
- The right interface for your day-to-day users
- The right level of flexibility in drilling down into the data
- The right breadth of sources
- The right level of support
Ensuring that the platform successfully serves teams across your business not only makes you the resident expert, but also encourages everyone to work a little more closely together.
Think big – then think targeted – then start shopping.