Data 2.0

This post originally appeared on the Canadian Marketing Association Blog.

Social media is a wonderful new medium. It has created some of the world’s most prominent brands in Facebook and Twitter. It gives people a new way to stay in touch with friends and loved ones. And it provides brands a new way to reach existing and potential consumers, in a more engaging way than was previously possible. As social media continues to evolve, which it does at an alarming rate, marketers are finding new and creative ways to use social media to promote their brands.

However, an often overlooked facet of social media is the mass amounts of data that it produces. While marketers often use this information in their decision making, that is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of the opportunity it presents.

Data as Gold

Data generated through social media conversations and activities can prove extremely useful throughout your company and extremely valuable to your brand.

A couple of quick examples.

If a coffee shop were to find that a lot of discussion on their Facebook page was centred on a new beverage they launched, their procurement department would want to know to make sure they were buying enough of the ingredients.

Similarly, if that same coffee shop found that most of the people talking about that drink on their Facebook wall were from a certain area of the country, the logistics team would want to know so that they could send the extra ingredients to the region with the spike in demand.

These back office uses of social media data can have just as much impact on the brand as the public promotions run on social media platforms. It allows you to improve efficiency and cut costs, and most importantly it helps you ensure that you have what your customers want, when and where they want it.

What do you think? Is your entire company making use of the data your brand generates through social media?

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