calculator and penSocial media is no longer the newest shiny object or marketing fad that some early skeptics thought it would be. It has evolved into a fully integrated facet of all serious marketing strategies. Our features this week focused on how analyzing the data behind your organization’s social media activities can yield great insights into the best ways to connect with your customers.

As always, click on any of the headlines below to read the complete articles. Please feel free to comment on any of the posts or contact us on Facebook or Twitter to let us know what you think!

How to Use Social to Keep Customers Happy and Win Big in 2014


The start of the new year is a perfect time to give your business’ social media strategy a once-over. In the past, brands found success by extending their traditional marketing campaigns into the social realm, as well as creating unique messaging tailored specifically for these platforms. But as the social community matures, the way individuals interact with their favorite companies is also evolving, and there are a few key strategies that will determine 2014’s social media winners.

Smart social media managers will recognize that the key this year is putting the customer front and center. This means a move beyond marketing into prioritizing customer service and engagement. Across industries, tending to consumer needs in a timely manner will be of the utmost importance, and businesses will also have to reassess the structure of their social and customer service teams. Not only that, social media managers will need to recognize that people are hungry for visual content — and novel uses of it.
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Trends for 2014: How Social Platforms Are Fueling the Coming Data Revolution


The old adage “Information is Power” has never felt as true as it does today in a world hungry for data. For any facet of business, from marketing to sales, it’s important to have excellent analytics capability at your fingertips. Information helps you craft smarter, and more effective efforts to achieve your company’s goals.

Social media is a vast source of information. It’s a natural partner for applying big data principles because the intel it offers impacts so many departments. Just about everybody in a business can find compelling information in social media sources. It’s just a matter of digging it out and interpreting what you find. [ Read More… ]

[Image credits: Jason Howie, Anssi Koskinen, Andrew]