A report out late last year from storied investment management firm, Putnam Investments, which drew on survey data from over 800 financial advisors (http://dtn.fm/zPt74) and is the largest known body of research on their use of social media to date, indicates that social media has become an indispensable communications tool for day-to-day client/market interaction, as well as business-building. A quick look at the stats says it all, from the roughly 80 percent of financial advisors using social media for business (up 75 percent from 2014), as well as gaining new clients thereby, to an average annual asset gain from newly acquired clients of some $4.6 million.
Concrete feedback like this from the horse’s mouth about how important social media has become to overall client and market engagement gives pause for thought. But don’t stand still too long on the information superhighway contemplating this trend, because you will get run over by the innovators. The Putnam report says this megatrend represents an underlying dynamic that will likely endure, and with social media becoming vital across all age groups of financial advisors, even as most report the concurrent use of four or more social networks, the importance of a unified framework for landing content seamlessly across an entire brand/enterprise footprint will no doubt remain a chief concern.
This is especially true for IR/PR (investor relations/public relations) firms, who need to not only engage customers at the speed of information, but who also need to wrench out the big data from the traffic for business analytics so they can get a clear picture of things like campaign performance metrics or more deftly execute branded content deployment. And while the idea of a single dashboard for scheduling posts or managing feeds across multiple social network accounts is not new, with examples like Hootsuite, Agora Pulse and MeetEdgar making for easy references, the potential for such an engine to drive truly next-gen IR/PR vectors has remained largely untapped. Hootsuite can post to a wide variety of sites, such as Twitter (NYSE: TWTR), Facebook (NASDAQ: FB), LinkedIn (NYSE: LNKD), Google+ (NASDAQ: GOOG;GOOGL), Foursquare, MySpace and WordPress, but it isn’t really built for coordinated rapid campaigning or deep analytical harvesting.
Perhaps even more importantly, the resolution of several commonly-known usability/functionality problems which plague most extant social media management dashboarding solutions has not been forthcoming. The entire space has suffered from dashboards with usability issues that ruin brand traction, derail campaigns, and can make a company look unprofessional. Add to this a lack of really user-friendly options, or dashboards that give the user the ability to quickly set up and execute a professional, timed campaign, and you have (for the foreseeable future) the basis of mounting demand for an easy-to-use dashboard that lets entities like businesses and relations firms master their (or their client’s) social media presence.
There has been little effort to really serve the investor relations end of the market when it comes to such dashboards, even with the continued rise of innovative business analytics platforms like NetBase, with its NetBase Insight Workbench that is resold through a partnership with German multinational enterprise software giant SAP (NYSE: SAP), and which employs natural language processing tech to analyze social media. Such powerful big data-driven solutions prove the vitality of coordinated customer care and engagement, as well as timed campaign roll outs. Proven via comprehensive reporting and the digestion of social media data into easily understandable takeaways. Social media has become a critical piece of the puzzle for any effective IR/PR program these days, no matter what kind of publicly traded company we are talking about, and social media usage among the general populace continues to break records as well, with now almost two-thirds of social media users logging on to at least one such site every day (http://dtn.fm/lySX4). On both ends of the spectrum, from financial advisors to average investors, social media is becoming the dominant two-way communication space, like a planetary digital agora.
The increasing inescapability of having to manage a complex, multisite social media presence belies the extent to which a well-coordinated, brand-relevant campaign of synced content pushes can really help build a business or a brand presence. The question is no longer if such a dashboard solution is necessary for managing an increasingly unwieldy social media footprint (as the answer to that question is now invariably a yes), but simply how far can this architecture be exploited for maximum engagement and analytical value.
This is why the announcement in February of this year by developer Geegle Media’s parent company, Agora Holdings (OTC: AGHI), that it has overhauled its proprietary FRAME social media management dashboard for optimum usage by IR/PR firms and businesses is such a welcomed event. The IR/PR community has been gnashing its teeth for precisely such a blindingly simple, single-source dashboard, which can do scheduled campaign pushes to multiple sites, doesn’t have all the problems associated with other social media management dashboards and can still deliver the kind of rich, granular performance reportage needed to really evaluate campaign efficacy.
Bringing together the ultimate in user-friendly interfaces, with the ability to discover deep insights into brand traction through monitoring data points like reposts, mentions and brand-relevant conversations – along with tight Twitter, Facebook and Instagram integration – sets FRAME apart as an IR/PR sledgehammer.
Currently deployable in Android, iOS and desktop environments, FRAME may also soon integrate with LinkedIn and Google+, as well as YouTube and Tumblr. This combination of a wide variety of site integrations and the platform’s existing optimized IR/PR functionality, could put FRAME at the head of the pack in the professional-grade social media management game, especially when it comes to satisfying customers who want to execute coordinated campaigns in a more expedient, efficient, and easier fashion.
For more information, visit www.agoraholdingsinc.com
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