Hypatia categorizes social community technology as an integrated suite of software tools or online platform architecture designed to facilitate communication with customers, prospects, partners, or the general public at the same time. Unlike person-to-person emails, social channels are generally defined as one-to-many or many-to-many channels. According to Sue Hildreth, senior analyst and co-author of this study, “What differentiates social media platforms isn’t usually one major feature or characteristic. It’s the collection of features and technologies that enable organizations to create rich and flexible social environments for their customers, partners or public brand.”
Leslie Ament, vice president of research and co-author shared, “Organizations invest in social media initiatives for both long term (customer intelligence gathering and analysis) and short term (marketing and sales campaigns) goals. Others have no clear idea as to why a member community was launched on either a website or on a Facebook site—except that everyone else is doing it.” Ament added, “Companies realizing tangible ROI from social initiatives demonstrate several best practice behaviors:
• There is a strategic business purpose for engaging in social media beyond—everyone is doing it!
• Successful social media engagement requires an effective strategy, and consistent business processes, execution plans and actionable measurement metrics
• The social media environment poses challenges that are similar to public and private clouds —thus, socially-adept organizations know that if they fund a public communities---
Over 300 organizations that utilize social community software and services contributed to this primary research study. Industries represented included telecommunications, retail/CPG, manufacturing, financial services, manufacturing, hi-tech and non-profit. Company size representation was 33% small businesses, 33% mid-market and 34% large enterprises. This research study is available at http://store.hypatiaresearch.com/
Hypatia Research, LLC http://www.HypatiaResearch.com delivers high impact market intelligence, industry benchmarking, best practice, and vendor selection research for how businesses use technology and service providers to capture, manage, analyze and apply customer intelligence to enhance performance and to accelerate growth. Coverage areas include: CRM, Business Intelligence, Customer Analytics, Social Media, Marketing Automation, Database Marketing, and Information and Customer Data Integration and Quality. Since 2001, clients have relied on us for industry insight, expertise and independent market research for guidance in assessing various technology and service options. Hypatia of Alexandria (circa. 370-415 AD), was the first woman to make substantial contributions to the development of astronomy, mathematics, & philosophy.
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Hypatia delivers high impact market intelligence, industry benchmarking, best practices, technology vendor selection, and ROI assessment services for end-users of CRM, Business Intelligence, Analytics, & Customer Data Management/Data Quality solutions.