Radian6 – Profile of a Leader in Social Media Monitoring

Radian6 was recently hailed as the most innovative vendor in the social listening landscape.  Radian6 provides social media monitoring for marketing, communications and customer support professionals,  turning social media conversations into actionable marketing and business data. In this article we will have a closer look at this platform.

Creation

Radian6 co-founders Chris Newton (@cdnewt) and Chris Ramsey (@chrisramsey)  created the industry-leading social media monitoring platform in 2006,  and by 2011 they were successfully engaging with more than 2500 clients, including over half of the FORTUNE100, and leading global brands like AAA, Dell, GE, Kodak, PepsiCo and UPS.

Alongside their original, invaluable angel investors, Radian6 reached out to Canada’s National Research Council – Industrial Research Assistance Program. This program provides financial support to qualified small and medium-sized enterprises in Canada, by helping them develop technologies for competitive advantage. They also provided, through the program’s ‘startup incubator’, office space and other support. This was one government investment that didn’t fail – by 2010 the company had been turning a profit for two years, and was recognized as the fastest growing player in the social media monitoring space.

Monitoring

Radian6 helps companies listen to what people are saying about them online and engage in those conversations across the social web. From blogs and comments to multimedia, boards, forums and communities like Twitter, Radian6 gathers the discussions happening online and gives businesses the ability to analyze, manage, track, and report on their social media monitoring and engagement efforts.

Analysis widgets, streamlined reporting, integrated workflow capabilities and our Insights platform give users the ability to uncover influencers, track and measure engagement and determine which conversations are having an impact online. Integrated social media, CRM, and web analytics also help companies define their social media ROI.

VP Rob Begg said: “We are still focused on marketing as a listening-based concept, specific to a particular user. Our point of reference has always been to work with marketers and their needs, and what we see for them is a definite shift happening. Marketing is moving from unsolicited outreach to customers to a more proactive, conversation-based format.”

Salesforce

The Cloud computing giant Salesforce.com acquired social media monitoring company Radian6 for approximately $276 million in cash and $50 million in stock, net of cash in March 2011. Marc Benioff, chairman and CEO of Salesforce said:

“With Radian6, salesforce.com is gaining the technology and market leader in social media monitoring. We see this as a huge opportunity. Not only will this acquisition accelerate our growth, it will extend the value of all of our offerings.”

New Features

A  new addition is a social engagement console that allows companies to engage customers directly where a conversation is taking place — such as on Twitter or Facebook — while incorporating third-party data at the same time. New add-ons let users see trending topics from Twitter and statistics from Bit.ly indicating the reach of shared links.

Perhaps most significant of all the changes, said Begg, is the launch of Social Hub, a feature that helps users organize the huge amounts of social media conversations they collect by applying analytics and rules.

“Social Hub was born out of the feedback we received from customers that were particularly successful at social media,” he noted. “They had learned how to manage the huge volume of conversations by treating those 20,000 — or whatever the number would be — posts a day in a way that was automated and scalable. They would apply business rules to classify those posts in certain categories such as service or support.”

Social Hub can also be used for marketing campaigns, helping a company create landing pages or email messages based on a consumer’s likes.

Brian Solis talked about social media with Marcel LeBrun, SVP and GM of Salesforce Radian6.

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