While heavy-duty IT, algorithms and programming are needed to make real sense of the social web, the purpose of tapping into the data sources at the heart of social web activity is about doing more, with the right people, at the right time, with the right offer.
(‘Sense’ here means analysing the conversations, identifying the individuals, and mapping both to create a cohesive understanding and picture that allow decisions to be made and actions to be taken, all done in real-time, encapsulating the dynamic characteristics of the social web.)
For businesses, this means sales, services, and sustained relationships with customers, suppliers and partners. For other types of organization it might mean votes, memberships, brand awareness, improved services, along with sustained relationships with voters, members, or subscribers.
(Any organization can of course consider and define its social analytics objectives in its own terms.)
In all cases it’s about closing the gap with those you seek to serve and sell to, having a complete view of them as individuals, their organizations and their brands.
It’s about understanding the social aspects of brand, business development, business opportunity, satisfaction levels, and more, in the broader business context, and then systematically bringing those social aspects into play.
So for big business it’s now about how social analytics become integrated with business processes and strategic planning.
And for smaller businesses it’s about gaining an unfair advantage over competitors by using the data and insights pulled and analysed from the social web.
Businesses now seek a complete view of customers, one that embraces the opinions and insights derived from the real-time comments of consumers, competitors and influencers.
Plug these into customer engagement and you deliver business better results.
Plug these into your existing data and you can strategically deploy right-time engagement and business development programs.
Plug these into your strategic business plan and your strategic business planning processes, and you create a new way to create a competitive advantage.