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November 30, 2011

Salesforce.com unveils Radian6-insipred Social Marketing Cloud

Monitor, manage and analyse customer interactions on Facebook, Twitter et al.

By Steve Evans

Salesforce.com has unveiled the first fruits of its Radian6 acquisition by announcing its Social Marketing Cloud. The new platform enables companies to monitor and manage brand-related content online.

Radian6’s technology enables businesses to monitor what is being said about them on social networks such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube as well as forums and other websites. As well as monitoring these services Radian6 also enables companies to engage with what is being said and analyse the content. It was acquired by salesforce.com earlier this year for $326m.

This aspect of marketing is rapidly becoming all-important; customers are these days just as likely to head to Twitter and Facebook with a complaint as go direct to the company. That can often result is businesses feeling they have lost control of the conversation and therefore their online brand. Tools such as Radian6 are aimed at helping companies get on top of their online reputation.

Salesforce.com said the Radian6 Social Marketing Cloud is made up of five elements.

Social Monitoring: This is the most basic element of the package, enabling companies to monitor conversations across 150 million social media channels, including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn and blogs. It also supports 17 languages, salesforce.com said.

Next up is Social Insights. According to salesforce.com this is the analytics element of the platform. It can split conversations up into positive or negative sentiment and separate comments that suggest someone is thinking of buying a company’s product, for example. It can also offer analysis into how a marketing campaign is performing.

Social Insights also pulls in information from third-party social apps such as Klout, OpenAmplify and OpenCalais.

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Social Engagement focuses on interaction with customers where the conversation takes place, such as on Twitter or Facebook. It can also see trending topics on Twitter and bit.ly statistics so users can measure how successful a campaign has been.

Social Workflow is also called the social hub and it can automatically route relevant conversations to the right department, so if a customer is experiencing a problem their query can be sent straight to the customer services department.

Finally is Social Websites. This lets companies build custom websites for specific advertising or marketing campaigns. The company says it can bypass IT completely and uses drag and drop functionality to let marketers build their own websites. Fitting in with the Social Enterprise theme, users can add Twitter feeds and Facebook integration to their sites.

The cloud-based content management system is provided by salesforce.com’s Siteforce system.

Many elements of the Social Marketing Cloud are similar to those offered by the likes of Wildfire Interactive, which CBR has reported on before.

Salesforce Radian6 is available from today, starting at $600 per deployment, per month. The Radian6 Social Hub is available today in a limited release and is currently scheduled to be generally available in early 2012, the company said. It is priced from $1,200 per deployment, per month.

Radian6 Social Insights should be available from December this year. The third party integration is priced $60 per month. Siteforce is also generally available today, starting at $9,900 per year for one site, two contributor users and two publisher users, salesforce.com said.

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