I was the Editor of Smart Insights between 2015-2017. I managed the blog and you will find blog articles on a range of subjects- Marketing Technology trends and latest tech developments are a regular focus, as well as exploring key marketing concepts. You can get in touch with me on Twitter and connect with me on LinkedIn. The new Editor is Carolanne Mangles.

Social media can be a useful source of market information and a way to hear customer perspectives. Blogs, content communities, and forums are platforms where individuals share their reviews and recommendations of brands, products, and services. Businesses are able to tap and analyze the customer voices and feedback generated in social media for marketing purposes;[15] in this sense the social media is a relatively inexpensive source of market intelligence which can be used by marketers and managers to track and respond to consumer-identified problems and detect market opportunities. For example, the Internet erupted with videos and pictures of iPhone 6 "bend test" which showed that the coveted phone could be bent by hand pressure. The so-called "bend gate" controversy[16] created confusion amongst customers who had waited months for the launch of the latest rendition of the iPhone. However, Apple promptly issued a statement saying that the problem was extremely rare and that the company had taken several steps to make the mobile device's case stronger and robust. Unlike traditional market research methods such as surveys, focus groups, and data mining which are time-consuming and costly, and which take weeks or even months to analyze, marketers can use social media to obtain 'live' or "real time" information about consumer behavior and viewpoints on a company's brand or products. This can be useful in the highly dynamic, competitive, fast-paced and global marketplace of the 2010s.

Social media management tools centralize your social efforts and publishing in a single console or dashboard. These platforms let you add rich multimedia to posts, tailor messages to different networks and audiences, and toggle social channels on and off. These platforms take much of the manual effort out of managing different social profiles on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Twitter, and more. Combined with the analytics you're gathering on engagement, followers, posts, and a host of other metrics, these platforms help you get a handle on your social media efforts. They also help you feed all of the data you're gathering back into your online marketing, customer strategy, and other areas of your business. To one degree or another, social media touches just about everything.
Unified helps marketers make informed and impactful decisions with the industry’s only business intelligence platform purposely designed for social advertising. With experience collecting and enriching over $4 billion dollars of social investment data, Unified is passionate about providing Fortune 2000 brands and agencies greater transparency into their many teams, tools and strategies. The Unified Platform and service teams are specifically built to ensure data quality, optimize investments and answer critical business questions. Unified has offices in Atlanta, Austin, Los Angeles, New York City and San Francisco.

Google Analytics is the one tool that manages our social media. Why? Because the data we gather from analytics focuses our efforts on the social media platforms that are driving traffic and conversions. Did we receive a ton of traffic from Reddit in the last month that converted to subscribers? Did we have a negative ROI on our Facebook ad spend? Google Analytics provides these answers and more.   - Brett Farmiloe, Markitors
IFTTT, short for If This, Then That, is a social media recipe website! In a series of simple steps, this website will help you set up simple commands which link up different applications to automatically perform actions if triggered. For example, IF the weather app tells you there is a high UV index, THEN a reminder to put on sunscreen is triggered. IF you are tagged in a photo on Facebook, THEN save the photos to dropbox.

LinkedIn provides a variety of opportunities to put your best foot forward by showcasing your work and promoting yourself visually. Link to your articles in your profile, your portfolio in your achievements, and your slideshows as part of your background summary. Try to think of LinkedIn as a scrapbook of all of your shining professional successes and achievements.
Zoho Social manage multiple social networks, schedule unlimited posts, monitor keywords, and collaborate with your team all from a single dashboard. It let to publish your content when your audience is more likely to see it. The prediction engine helps you decide the best time to schedule your content. Instant notifications let you respond and engage your audience even while you're on the move. Zoho Social understand who your audience is and how they engage with your business on social media, choose from ready-made reports or create your own, based on the numbers that matter for you. Collaborate on ideas…
First, you need to understand what a strategy is, and isn’t it. A strategy should define the main aim of your social media presence and set the parameters for what it will deliver and how it will be delivered. It will be supported by a tactical plan that defines how the strategy will be delivered, including the channels, resource and budgets to achieve it.
Have you ever looked through the people you follow on Twitter or Pinterest? You probably see about .05% of things they tweet or pin. I’m grabbing this metric out of thin air, but since everyone who’s anyone is on social media, even if you are posting regularly your followers are probably not very engaged with your brand. The number of people following you can only take you so far. “Twitter is sort of like the ‘live TV’ of social media,” according to Marketing Land’s Danny Sullivan. “If you’re not tuned in to catch a particular tweet live, then you’ve missed it.” This doesn’t apply just for Twitter, the reach of Facebook’s organic posts has drastically dropped making it much more difficult for brands to stand out, even if you’re following their page (we’ll get into this more in tip #3)…
Many brands mistakenly assume they need to post their content anywhere and everywhere to maximize its potential reach. But plastering your brand’s content across every social network, trendy news site, and video platform that comes along is not a channel plan. That social media approach attempts to go as far and wide as possible, but it holds no regard for whom it reaches, how they might be impacted, or how that impact might reflect on the business.
We tested the core tasks critical to each platform's social media management and analytics features, with SMB and enterprise business value in mind. Such core tasks include how each tool gathers listening and mention data from the main social networks and other sources, and how creatively and effectively each tool transforms and presents the data with reporting and visualizations. We also tested how each tool configures and sends alerts, connects social data to tangible ROI, and does both competitive and community analysis on top of offering an intuitive home base for social publishing and content curation.
Customize your posts, schedule them for publishing later, collaborate with other team members and get access to all your social analytics. A free account gets you a very limited offering of just the basic features with tight restrictions, but there are four more premium account types that are affordable for any small or large social marketing strategy.
People respond to good imagery, fun videos, and some interesting podcasts once and awhile. Jazz up your content by using this type of media regularly. Your social media pages will look bland if all you post and share is text, so be sure to use other types of media to catch your audience's eye. This is also a great way to add a level of personality to your brand. 
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