Buyers Guide: A Strategy for Managing Social Media Proliferation (Altimeter Report)

Get account control now –or risk a career of continual social media sanitation. To match the growing consumer adoption of social media, many companies have launched social media efforts with little planning. As social media spreads beyond corporate communications and marketing, business groups are deploying social media without a standardized process. In fact, enterprise class corporations (those with over 1,000 employees) have an average of 178 social media accounts and this number will only grow if left unchecked. Companies that don’t control these accounts are at risk of having abandoned accounts, lack of consistent experience, or untrained employees creating a crisis.

Join Altimeter’s webinar to discuss this report.
We’ll cover the market trends, industry problems, provide new data not in this report, give insight to the future of this growing space. We’ll also be featuring case studies of success of how top brands are showing success, please submit case studies for review. Register for the webinar on Feb 7th, 2012, and we’ll dive in deeper.

This report puts companies in control based on business needs.
Buyers are confused by the number of vendors claiming similar offerings, and as a result spend months making decisions on who to short list. To fast forward the industry, this report serves to accelerate the process, this report contains the following elements:

  1. A Thorough Methodology: including 71 interviews, a survey to 144 buyers, a survey to 27 vendors, and analysis from a dedicated research team. Read page 4 for more details
  2. Five Business Use Cases: Based on interviews with buyers, we sought to find out their needs, rather than focus on software features.
  3. Altimeter Radar: a decision-making matrix that will help buyers to determine which vendors are best for them.
  4. Pragmatic Guide: At the end of the report, we feature 11 steps with examples and pitfalls to avoid guide all buyers must complete.
  5. A resource checklist: buyers should use to ensure that they make the best decision with regard to their social media.

 

Above is the full report, feel free to read, download and share.

This is just the start of this growing space.
We coined the Social Media Management Systems market and started the first industry list in March, 2010 (read all the posts on this topic). Over the past few quarters, we worked closely with Altimeter Research’s Andrew Jones, and we’ve compiled over 13,000 pieces of data about vendors and what buyers need, case studies, and dozens of interview notes. Our experience helping 3 global companies make decisions on these SMMS vendors has helped us to realize the struggle the entire industry is going to have when it comes to keeping track of this fast-moving space. This report, which is a snapshot in time, documents the industry, and we’ll continue to publish changes in this space over the coming years.


Five Use Cases for Social Media Management
Above Graphic: First, Align by the Five Use Cases for Social Media Management.Altimeter Radar:  Choose The Right Social Media Management Systems based on Business Needs
Above Graphic: Then, Choose The Right Social Media Management Systems based on Business Needs.

Open Research: Use it, share it, and we’ll publish more.
While there are many types of decision-making reports on the market, this one is unique for the following reasons: 1) We realize that one size does not fit all and we do not lump all vendors into one diagram; instead we segment by use case to show different capabilities, 2) Rather than focusing on enterprise class only, we include those that can serve medium-size companies, as this space is dynamically changing, 3) We publish under Open Research so it can be read by all, rather than sold by subscription, and 4) We disclose our client relationships, including vendors that are clients that were in this report, so you have the utmost confidence in our recommendations.

During the editing process, we pulled out pages and pages of content in the editing process, so expect many future blog posts, webinars, and speeches to continue this discussion.


Related Resources
In the following section, we cross-link to thoughtful reviews of the research report. We look forward to comments from those in the community.

Related Research

Related Webinars

News Media

Domain Experts

Agency Reviews

Software Vendor Reviews

Other Notes

Update Jan 5th end of day: We corrected the report to notate a correct total of 71 interviews, not 70.

105 Replies to “Buyers Guide: A Strategy for Managing Social Media Proliferation (Altimeter Report)”

  1. Thanks Jeremiah for yet another insightful and incredibly helpful report! We’re glad that you see Wildfire as a “fast mover.” 

    Since you interviewed us for this report several months ago, we’ve implemented many, many enhancements to our platform. We’ve deepened our language capabilities and permissions, enabling our customers to control campaigns in scores of countries and languages. We’re getting glowing feedback about the upgrades from numerous customers that manage several hundred or even several thousand pages using Wildfire, including Facebook itself, which manages 60+ of its own brand pages with our platform. I’d say we are now very strong in the Distributed Brand Presence category. 

    We’ve also added new capabilities to our messaging product; under the category of Intense Engagement, we cover the vast majority of the features you list including: monitoring and alerting tools, workflow routing, and tiered governance features. We look forward to seeing these improvements included in upcoming reports. Thanks again for providing such insightful information! – Victoria Ransom, CEO, Wildfire Interactive, Inc.

  2. Thank you Jeremiah, this report and much of your work is greatly appreciated. It provides great analysis that is helping my startup team better understand that market. Keep up the great work and great tweets (I’m @Dsox).

  3. Great piece of work, thank you very much. There’s a little typo in your blogpost, I guess. Isn’t the webinar supposed to be in 2012 instead of 2011? 😉

  4. Jeremiah – I obviously can’t be the first to say so, but I want to give you a big “congratulations.” I have watched first hand how hard your whole team worked to produce this report and we here at the Targeted Group were honored to be included in the report and look forward to being an active participant in the many future conversations as well.

    As you noted in the report, the quality of the consulting services and true data analytics are big needs in the industry. We are going to be doing a series of blog posts highlighting those specific capabilities. You have provided such a valuable road map for enterprise clients to identify their needs and quickly navigate the landscape of solution providers.

    From the whole team here at TTG, we thank you and greatly appreciate all that happens at the “hangar.”

  5. Jeremiah, we’re looking
    forward to reading and digging through your report. As you know, uberVU is working to help enterprises not only
    deploy social media with a plan, but also to monitor, measure and analyze for
    long term success. We’re soon delivering our own report on the 4 pillars of
    social media – and we look forward to sharing and talking with you February.
    Keep up the great work in this space – businesses need continued guidance from
    experts like you as they plan for and choose the best route to social media
    success. 

     

    -Mark Pascarella, CEO |
    uberVU

  6. Kudos Jeremiah! Wonderful to see a report that truly understands the differences among the social media software vendors and addresses the core business problems facing today’s enterprises that we are all trying solve. Spredfast is honored to be mentioned along side these innovative companies.

    – Ken Cho, Co-Founder & Chief Strategy Officer, Spredfast

  7. Great report, Jeremiah.  Just by breaking down SMM into 5 use cases for enterprises, you’re giving enterprise buyers and vendors a new way to talk about both needs and fit. It’s also helpful to see a “Consumers’ Report” type of chart of the 27 SMMS vendors in your study.  
    Loved the pragmatic recommendations for buyers! I think buyers should also look at the functional side of SMMS in Jason Falls’ October 24 post.
    One idea I do question – the Platform Campaign Marketing use. This seemed a bit “odd man out” as it pretty much focused only on Facebook.  And it’s not necessarily the case that a vendor like Wildfire that excels on Facebook campaigns would excel equally across Twitter, LinkedIn and G+.  
    All in all, very informative, helpful, packed with data and recommendations.  I’m really looking forward to your webinar on this – many, many thanks!

  8. Wish to see client/customer satisfaction as a future addition in this report. Long term SMMS need this data independently.
    You and your team deserves the best. This report is very beneficial to a very new and evolving technology.

    Well done.

  9. Wish to see client/customer satisfaction as a future addition in this report. Long term SMMS need this data independently.
    You and your team deserves the best. This report is very beneficial to a very new and evolving technology.

    Well done.

  10. We actually have customer satisfaction data of the vendors, that will surface later.  The challenge is that there are so many options right now, that the data sets can get very small due to the explosion of vendors.  I will discuss this more in future posts.

  11. We actually have customer satisfaction data of the vendors, that will surface later.  The challenge is that there are so many options right now, that the data sets can get very small due to the explosion of vendors.  I will discuss this more in future posts.

  12. Great Guide. You don’t have to look very hard to see the lack of synergy across the various social platforms. Focusing more on synergy, and less on quantity, will always yield the best results.

  13. Great Guide. You don’t have to look very hard to see the lack of synergy across the various social platforms. Focusing more on synergy, and less on quantity, will always yield the best results.

  14. Thanks for this Jeremiah, useful and insightful as always.

    Out of curiosity, any reason that Sprout Social isn’t on the vendor list? Did they fail to respond, or did they not meet your initial criteria?

  15. I most appreciated the 5 Use Cases–that’s a very helpful frame for defining and differentiating SMM objectives. But I found myself struggling to fit many of the B2B companies we work with into one of those cases. These companies need systems to support targeted engagement–specific and differentiated market segments that need consistent engagement with strategically directed content and useful metrics beyond followers and likes. This use case requires more focus on intelligence and analytics, rather than just monitoring and coordination of engagement. I’m not sure if you’d see that as a different use case, or how you’d see it fitting into one of the existing cases… Thanks, Jeremiah, for another solid paper.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *