Just as every social media platform has its own strengths and weaknesses, it is likewise true that the various social media management platforms themselves have different capabilities. In order to find the platform that is best-suited to your company's unique needs, you'll first need to build an accurate picture of your company itself. Who is your target audience? What are your specific sales and conversion goals? How is your online reputation, and could it stand to be improved? How large is your business, and how much growth are you planning for in the next five years?
Small and enterprise social media management solutions may have certain similarities, but the resources behind those solutions, as well as the particulars relating to audience and execution will likely be vastly different. Likewise, an organization that wants to focus more heavily on social media reputation management will need a platform with more of a focus on brand awareness than those prefered by organizations that just want to increase their site traffic. That said, there are certain features that the best social media management platforms share.
Social media management can mean many different things, but there are four areas where every business should be measuring their social outcomes. These areas are as follow:
- Site Traffic: the total number of visitors that come to your site
Your social media page should be a springboard to bring visitors to your website, ecommerce page, blog, etc. Measuring the total number of site visitors brought in by your social pages will give you an idea of how effective your social strategy is.
- Site-Visitor Loyalty: how likely are visitors return to your site
If your social media page is bringing a lot of visitors to your site, but these visitors are quickly leaving without taking the next step towards conversion, or aren't returning to your site at a later time, then there is likely something wrong that needs to be addressed.
- Conversion: the number of site visitors that take the desired action
Going hand-in-hand with visitor loyalty, conversion demonstrates how effective a social media page is at preparing and identifying prospective customers.
- Brand Awareness: how familiar a target audience is with the images or other qualities used to represent your business
Your social media pages should be promoting your brand in ways beyond increasing sales. The amount of active followers you have on your social sites, and how likely social users are to like, retweet, repost, etc. the content you provide can be an indication of how recognizable your brand is.
To be able to accurately measure and manage these four areas, you'll need to make a social media management platforms-comparison. Online reviews of various social media management providers can give you an idea of how effective each option is, and free trial options can help you see exactly how useful an option may be to your specific circumstances. But before you can make a final decision, you'll first need to narrow down the number of prospects. Here are three features that the best social media management platforms share:
- Advanced Targeting
Who are your customers? This is a question that social media management can help you answer. Through collected demographic data and targeted advertising, you'll be able to not only bet a better idea of who your customers are, but also create a highly effective funnel for bringing interested, committed clients to your site, converting your social media traffic into increased profits.
- Effective Tracking
Data is at the heart of any social media strategy, so your social media management solution needs to be capable of tracking all of the important data your social sites generate. This means capturing valuable customer data which can be used to better identify key demographics. It also means tracking things such as user engagement and click-through rates, in order to create an accurate picture of how effective your social sites are. Given that 53% of social media marketers don't measure their success, effective data tracking can give you a definite edge over your competition.
- Accurate Forecasting
It's one thing to have an accurate picture of your current situation, but it can be even more lucrative to have an accurate picture of tomorrow's situation. Social media management can use captured data, in conjunction with smart analytics, to create high-probability forecasts, for timely campaigns that anticipate upcoming customer trends.
Salesforce specializes in customer relationship management (CRM), and their data-driven approach has cemented them as the leader in their industry. This same approach has created a superior social media management platform, in the form of Social Studio.
As with all Salesforce solutions, Social Studio is cloud based and data focused, collecting, analyzing, and extrapolating useful conclusions from massive amounts of captured data. This data is then displayed using various interactive dashboards, giving users as broad or as specific a picture of the current information as they could want. Salesforce tools are also easy to integrate into any existing company processes, and feature built-in training options, reliable multi-channel support, and a flexible structure that can be adapted and scaled to the needs of any business. And, because social media management services pricing is definitely something that should be considered before committing to a specific option, Salesforce offers pay-as-you-go pricing models, meaning that you'll only be charged for the services you use.