Is Your Agency Making Social Media Easy?

by Jason Falls |

One of the biggest challenges brand-side marketers face in dealing with social media is incorporating the necessary time to monitor and respond to conversation online. Marketers are busy people. Most only spend about 10-20 percent of their time dealing with advertising or their agency partners. One of the biggest challenges for advertising and public relations agencies in relation to social media is getting brand-side trust to enable the agency to read and react to the social web without layers of approvals.

There’s at least one agency out there that seems to have developed a solution that helps mitigate both problems with an interesting tool and approach.

A Zeitgeits & Coffee Dashboard view featuring Facebook and Twitter posts for internal and client review. (Click for larger image.)
A Zeitgeits & Coffee Dashboard view featuring Facebook and Twitter posts for internal and client review. (Click for larger image.)

Media Logic, an “integrated communications firm,” (read: Ad agency) with offices in Albany, N.Y., and Oakland, Calif., has recently repositioned themselves as a “conversation-centric” marketing company with social media as the central focus of their offering. But it’s not that they’re using Facebook apps and “viral” videos to drive new business. They’ve actually put some smarts behind a technology platform and marketing approach that focuses on listening and engaging people on the social web.

The gist of their pitch is this:

  • The primary driver of their offering is a technology platform called Zeitgeist and Coffee. It’s essentially a social media monitoring dashboard that the agency manages for the client. Each client is assigned a “conversation manager” who reviews the inbound stream, prioritizes mentions and conversations for addressing or follow up, and perhaps even offers suggested responses. The client can log in to the platform to review the latest posts, approve or amend suggested responses or even respond directly to the conversations.
  • They claim their approach, a “suite of products,” defines opportunities and initiatives for the client; identifies goals and objectives; their technology then sweeps the landscape to gauge the conversations; establishes a platform, content, voice and volume for a marketing effort; defines roles and responsibilities for the effort and ultimately allows their clients to join the conversation.
  • Media Logic’s angle is this is a social media-driven solution for marketers. They recognize companies and brands have internal struggles as to who controls social media. This puts the marketing team in the driver’s seat for consumer engagement.

The key takeaway from learning about Media Logic for me was to show you how one agency is building an offering around social media by taking a brand manager’s stress relative to social media away. They’ve built an easy to use tool to monitor, prioritize and curate conversations so the brand can feel as if they have a grasp on what’s out there.

At first glance, Zeitgeist & Coffee appears to be an agency doing a good job of monitoring and holding their client’s hand with listening and cursory engaging in social media. But that’s one small part of doing social media well. Media Logic does offer a suite of “products” that at least seems to account for the other parts of social media — producing ideas that proactively engage consumers — but they certainly deserve some credit for attacking the sore spot for most brands with the Zeitgeist & Coffee product.

In case you were wondering, Media Logic doesn’t offer the Zeitgeist & Coffee product as a stand alone service. You pretty much have to bring them on board as your AOR for social media work to get access to it. They preach their process is more important than one or more of their products. Despite their generous use of the word “proprietary” (pet peeve of mine for some reason) Zeitgeist & Coffee while inventive and cool, especially coming from an agency, can be closely replicated with a paid monitoring solution and some smart thinking.

Still, don’t miss the important point of Media Logic’s approach: Your agency’s clients will be more comfortable with social media, and more willing to spend money with you for it, if you hold their hand a bit and make it easy for them to understand and engage. Kudos to Media Logic for showing some of us the way.

Media Logic isn’t the first to do it. They may not even be the best out there. What is your agency doing to embrace and help teach your clients to embrace social media. Please share your ideas in the comment section so we can all learn a new trick or two.

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About the Author

Jason Falls

Jason Falls is a leading thinker, speaker and strategist in the world of digital marketing and is co-author of two books, No Bullshit Social Media: The All-Business, No-Hype Guide To Social Media Marketing and The Rebel's Guide To Email Marketing. By day, he leads digital strategy for Elasticity, one of the world's most innovative digital marketing and public relations firms. Follow him on Twitter (@JasonFalls).