What’s a large enterprise with 40 Facebook pages, three YouTube channels, five Twitter accounts, three Google Buzz pages and two MySpace pages to do? Add an enterprise-level social media management platform, says one Toronto-based social media vendor.
It’s “massively confusing,” said Michael Scissons, CEO of social media technology provider Syncapse Corp. “It’s not going to end. The fragmentation is getting so large and so diverse with all the international markets, people and places,” he said.
Syncapse built SocialTalk, its flagship social media management platform, specifically to serve the needs of medium and large businesses that have “the very specific challenge of managing this monstrosity that social media is creating,” he said.
SocialTalk provides a central point of management for multiple social media accounts, aggregating data from various sources, providing dashboards of real-time information at global, regional and local levels, and creating metrics for measuring the results.
Suited to enterprises with governance issues, the platform also manages publishing, workflow and approvals, he said. An external agency can, for example, load content into the system, at which point the content gets passed to the legal or PR department for approval and then gets published out.
“The interest in social media and the growing use of social media has taken a challenging problem and made it worse – but it is not a new problem by any means,” said Carol Rozwell, vice-president and distinguished analyst at Gartner Inc.
It’s extremely difficult for organizations of any size to put in place even a simple piece of collateral, whether they get help from a consultant or PR firm or not, because it involves so many people, she said.
While there are products that will help an organization send a consistent message to a variety of different social media sites like Twitter or Facebook, these tools aren’t helping organizations figure out their social media strategies, said Rozwell. “That’s a different problem, and unfortunately, we are seeing many companies just move into social media without really thinking about what’s behind it,” she said.
Gartner recommends five things that have to be in a social media plan for an organization to use it successfully, said Rozwell. And developing a social media strategy starts with thinking about how the organization will establish a coordinated strategy, she said.