Social Media Listening/Monitoring

27 Mar

The article written by Kevin Allen (2013) outlined three social media dashboards better suited towards listening and monitoring, including:

Radian6 – (now called Salesforce Marketing Cloud)


Based on a topic profile created that contains the keywords that a client wants to monitor, Radian6 will listen to various forms of social media for these keywords and then deliver the results of its “surveillance” in real time. The collected data is presented in widgetized tools that are highly customizable so it can adapt to the specific needs of the client. It contains various analysis tools that will reveal the “top influencers” and the developing trends. It will also identify the conversations that are creating influence online (AllFamous, 2013). The site was founded in 2006. The image below shows the Radian6 dashboard.



Crimson Hexagon


Unlike other social media monitoring and analysis companies, Crimson Hexagon uses statistical theory developed at Harvard University to analyze unstructured text such as social media posts. The Crimson Hexagon ForSight platform brings human judgment into every equation, incorporating a patented teachable algorithm that finds the real meaning behind social media posts (St.Amand, 2013). The site was founded in 2007 and can cost upwards of $150,000 per year. See image on the following page for a visual representation of the Crimson Hexagon dashboard.





Sysomos brings business intelligence to social media, providing instant and unlimited access to all social media conversations to quickly see what is happening, why it is happening, and who is driving the conversations.  Through the use of contextual text analytics and data mining technology, Sysomos collects data from blogs, Twitter, social networks, message boards, wikis and major news sources (The Pulse, 2011). The site was founded in 2007. The image below is an example of the Sysomos dashboard.




Allen, K. (March 6, 2013). With tweetdeck gone, alternative tools for managing social media. Entrepreneur. Retrieved from

AllFamous. (January 18, 2013). What is Radian6? AllFamous Intelligent Digital Marketing. Retrieved from

St. Amand, W. (2013). Crimson Hexagon social media analysis library surpasses 200 billion posts. Yahoo Finance. Retrieved from

The Pulse. (2011). About Sysomos – A social media monitoring and analytics company. Retrieved from


Communications Dashboards

27 Mar

A communications dashboard is a unified communications interface designed to facilitate efficient, convenient communication among users in business environments. The particular type of dashboard reviewed for this report is the social media dashboard, which integrates multiple social media networks including Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, Foursquare, and WordPress for example. It becomes “extremely strenuous for online users to manage different social media platforms individually, so social media dashboard simplifies the problem of the users by maintaining all the portals on one page. A social media dashboard is a platform to channelize, organize and maintain various online portals from one single window. It provides a synoptic view of everything that is from the number of fans to the link clicks; all can be viewed at one glance” (Aynilists, 2011).



The image below is an example of the Hootsuite dashboard, currently one of the most utilized social media dashboards. For premium accounts, users get advanced features for social analytics, audience engagement, team collaboration and security (Moreau, 2012). The site was founded in 2008.




Another example of a social media dashboard is Spredfast. This tool markets itself to large brands and caters to them, while Sprout and HootSuite could be just as effective if you were using it for personal account management. Spredfast has extensive capabilities around workflow, monitoring, responding, campaign execution, reporting, and comparative analytics. The site was founded in 2008. The image below displays the Spredfast dashboard.




Benefits of Utilizing Dashboards

Utilizing dashboards provides numerous benefits to the business. First off, you are better able to track competition. It is just as easy to track competitors as it is to track your own company. Time management is improved as efficiency is increased when all social media channels are on one site compared to spread out over multiple sites. Using the dashboard allows the ability to set up keyword searches that will track what people are saying about you and your product or service. This allows for real-time consumer sentiment to be gauged and responded to accordingly.

The scheduler feature of a dashboard lets you spend time once a week or once a month setting up posts to be sent out at certain intervals. This saves time and makes for more consistent communications. Dashboards also, in many instances, help find new customers. Through tracking what people are talking about, you are able to see who are the brand influencers and seek out their followers. Another important benefit derived from dashboards is the ability to improve collaboration. Employees located anywhere are able to work together on social media campaigns found within the dashboard. And finally, dashboards give you a good idea of where most of the traffic to your sites is coming from. This information provides better guidance for where marketing dollars should be spent.




Moreau, E. (2012). What is Hootsuite? Taking a look at one of the most popular social media management tools. WebTrends. Retrieved from

Prollie – Scoring Your Skills and Passions

27 Mar

Prollie is a social search and analytics platform based in New York. The platform was founded in 2011 and launched its public beta on March 5th of this year. Following influence scoring sites such as Klout and Kred, Prollie promises to judge brand and individual influencers with deeper analysis across social networks (Natividad, 2013). So far, comments, retweets, and shares have defined social influence scores. Prollie aims to put quality over quantity and passions over influence when determining scores. “While it’s good to have influence, what we’re really measuring is who you are and what you love, whether you have 10 followers or 10,000,” say brothers Mike and Red Fabbri, who co-founded the company. (Glenn, 2013)



Prollie, unlike Klout, Kred, and PeerIndex, isn’t really a tool to just keep track of your grade. Even if you see a grade between A and C- next to your profile picture, the point of Prollie is simply to find other users. To do this Prollie provides a search engine tool for consumers to find someone with interests that align with their own (Bea, 2013). The scoring system looks at how well people use each platform. For example, using hashtags and user handles or adding pictures to Twitter will most likely gain you a higher score than someone just posting status updates.






Natividad, A. (March 8, 2013). Facebook’s News Feed, SXSW, LinkedIn, Prollie, Hashtag How-To… Week in Social Media #SocialSkim. MarketingProfs. Retrieved from

Bea, F. (March 10, 2013). Forget social influence, prollie scores your skills and passions. Digital Trends. Retrieved from

Glenn, D. (March 5, 2013). Prollie launches a different kind of influence measuring site. Social Times. Retrieved from

Pheed: The Next Big Social Media Trend?

25 Feb

There seems to be a new social media site that has begun attracting a lot of attention. It launched approximately three months ago and has already become the top social app in the App Store, according to Forbes (beating out Facebook and Twitter). The site initially became popular amongst artists, photographers, filmmakers, and musicians because of a copyright button that lets users put a watermark on content making in legally binding. Now, teenagers, with large Twitter and Instagram followings, are the driving force behind the site’s rapid growth in popularity. The site currently has approximately one million users and the premise is that Pheed is a combination of every social media site that has ever existed up to this point.



Jon Swartz from USA Today stated that, “Pheed is a social-media platform that combines elements of Twitter, SoundCloud, Tumblr, Ustream and Instagram. There are also no limits on content size: videos can run up to 4 hours and 20 minutes, and photos can be any resolution and shape.”

The site also gives users the option of changing for content, which is a great feature for artists wanting to make a name for themselves. Users can charge from $1.99 to $34.99 per view or have the option of charging $1.99 to $34.99 per month and they own all of the content. According to an article titled “Is Pheed The Future of Social Media”, the site “makes a profit by taking half of the revenue to cover their bandwidth and storage, payment processing, and of course, Pheed’s profits” (

Certain celebrities, such as Justin Bieber, Miley Cyrus, and Paris Hilton, have added to the current hype surrounding the site but many people are predicting that Pheed will continue to gain momentum and increase in popularity.



Privacy Policies

6 Dec

Online privacy is a hot topic as of late. Privacy policies are continually changing and it can be a very confusing and disconcerting for individuals who want to participate on social media sites and other online forums but fear breaches in their privacy. The two sides of the debate are that we are protected enough by the policies and laws put forth by the government and the other side stating that our privacy is not protected enough and the government needs to step in more to deal with it.

Privacy is Adequately Protected

Bills and laws have been developed and passed specifically to protect privacy. Most recently Bill C51 was put through which controls who has access to information online and ensures that only people with correct authorization are able to use the information. It also acts as a standard for ensuring that information is not being misused outside of the guidelines. Bill C52 states that only under certain circumstances can your data and information be legally obtained. The personal information protection act covers accountability, consent, limits use and then destruction of information after it has been used for the original purpose, accuracy safeguards, identifying purpose of data, and limiting collection. These laws and bill protect our privacy and it is up to individuals to ensure that websites they are using have adequate privacy policies.

Privacy is not Adequately Protected

The Internet has radically changed the world of information. It has become increasingly difficult to protect people, as most information is now found online. Users feel they need more protection and this has lead to companies such as Google to revise their privacy policy. Google changed the way they store information and edited the wording of the policy so that it is easier to understand. Because the Internet is a global community, there are concerns with the fact that there are differing privacy laws depending on the country. Users feel there needs to be more protection across all countries to ensure information is protected on at least some basic level all around the world. The right for users to have ownership of information in emails and online accounts is forefront in the debate.

My Conclusion

I believe that users of the Internet need to be more accountable for protecting their own privacy. Individuals need to self-monitor the information that they put online keeping in mind the ramifications should that information be obtained and used illegally. Hackers are constantly just looking for loopholes and if you are putting the information out there, it is available for them to grab. Obviously government does need to have a firm stance on keeping peoples information private. With the online world changing so rapidly, these laws and regulations need to be constantly updated to ensure they are effective. Privacy policies need to be made more transparent and written in language that is easy to understand. And it is up to individuals to be aware of what their rights are and what information is not protected. In the end, it is best to limit the amount of personal information you post online.


Cause Marketing

6 Dec

Cause Marketing refers to a type of marketing involving the cooperative efforts of a “for profit” business and a non-profit organization for mutual benefit. Some argue that cause marketing is a mutually beneficial partnership and others believe it is a predatory scam.

Cause Marketing is Mutually Beneficial

As stated above, cause marketing is when corporations partner with non-profits to support a cause. The corporation creates awareness and raises funds that support that specific cause. Product sales and consumer willingness to pay for products have a positive relationship with cause marketing. 72% of Canadian consumers are more likely to purchase goods from a company supporting a cause or supporting the community.  And along the same line, 74% of Canadians prefer to work for a socially responsible company. So if a company participates in cause marketing, their employees most likely have higher levels of morale and motivation compared to companies who do not. Cause Marketing also lends more credibility to the non-profit and increases the potential for donations and financial support. In the end it works out to being a win-win-win situation. The company makes more profits, non-profit organizations get more exposure, and customers feel good about themselves for supporting a cause.

Cause Marketing is a Sham

When companies are participating in a cause marketing campaign, their main motivation is profit and not helping out. Companies tend to only choose causes that are “in fashion” therefore more marketable and more profitable. Bigger companies are ignoring less attractive charities because they know they cannot profit as much from supporting them. Cause marketing is also leading to some issues being overblown and exaggerated, such as breast cancer, when in fact there are other diseases impacting women more. Companies participating in cause marketing are usually not transparent as to how much of the money being raised is actually being given to the non-profit. For example, McDonalds only donated one cent from each happy meal sale to the Ronald McDonald house. The average consumer would assume that a much higher percentage of the sale would be going towards the cause. This has also lead to people contributing less to other causes now because they think they are participating enough just by purchasing products being offered through cause marketing relationships.

My Conclusion

I think the sentiment behind cause marketing is a noble one but most companies have lost sight of what it should be about, which is truly helping out a cause. Companies should be more transparent with their activities (how they are actually involved in the cause, what portion of profits is actually going towards the cause, etc.) and choose to partner with non-profits that fit with company values and branding. Companies should not just be partnering with the non-profit that will generate the most revenue. I think it is very important that the non-profit gains exposure and increased awareness as a result of the cause marketing campaign. Consumers must be educated about how they are helping and learn from the campaign. It is important for companies to support charities and give back to the community. Cause marketing is a way for all parties to benefit and can be aligned so as to create long lasting and profitable relationships.

Traditional versus Social Media

29 Nov

Traditional & Social Media

Traditional media spans several different areas that include television, radio, magazines and newspapers. It used to be that individuals turned to one of these media to gain the latest information with regards to news throughout the world, but lately have tuned into other mediums for information. There are however, still portions of the population that are unfamiliar and intimidated by the influx of social media and who continue to respond most favorably to the mediums of television, radio, magazines, and newspapers. As well, there are some definite benefits to a company using traditional media, which are hard to replicate with the use of social media. According to Vision Critical (2012) traditional media “[reigns] supreme for purchasing decisions” amongst consumers. It is the traditional media resources such as newspapers at 86% usage, television at 83% and magazines at a high 73% are the sources Canadians go to for accurate and trustworthy information.

Social Media has grown to include websites, social media aspects such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to communicate and create an online presence. Social media provides information quickly and accurately to consumers on the go. It provides individuals with access to information from their phone, Ipads or other technological devices. Social media has become a more trusted medium amongst the younger generation of consumers when it comes to accessing information. According to Vision Critical (2012), 18-34 year olds are two times as likely as individuals ages 35-54 to use social media such as Facebook for credible information. That is approximately 22% of 18-34 have more believability towards social media outlets than their counterparts at 12%.

How Traditional Media is Adjusting

Traditional media systems utilized the funnel system that focused on finding the consumers, converting them and keeping them. To help deal with the newly integrated social media system, the funnel system had to be re-adjusted. Social media funnels focus first on attracting new members through word of mouth, converting customers and finding others. An interesting point written in a blog by Constant Contact (2012) is the need still for both types of media. They suggested that the newly popularized social media contexts are indeed not a replacement of traditional media and shouldn’t be considered as one. They suggested that while social media has indeed gained popularity over the years it is merely a tool that should be used in conjunction with traditional media, not on its own.

Traditional media is also adjusting to the newly developing social media spectrum by using social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter and blogs as a form of customer service interaction. According to SelfGrowth (2012) businesses are turning social media into an avenue that will help the business grow rather than solely a marketing technique. Businesses realize that social mediums help customers interact with the business by providing feedback and suggestions related to their products. Results from the CMO Survey conducted in February 2012 predict that within the next five years, marketers are expected to spend 19.5% of their total budgets on social media, which is three times what the current levels are. Also, the number of individuals employed in-house to work directly on social media has increased 70% from approximately five employees to nine employees. (CMO Survey, 2011).

It seems that the only way traditional media can respond to social media according to Chloesmedia (n.d.) is by adapting to it to ensure that companies do not lose profits and retain their current audiences. Companies such as newspapers are posting their content on the web for public view. Although this conversion to online media means helping the consumer’s out with their need for fast “on the go” information, there are questions as to the profit actually realized by traditional media outlets who are attempting to switch to online.