Inside A Social Media Command Center
Inside A Social Media Command Center
by

Last month I paid a visit to Dreamforce, the user conference for Salesforce.com, in San Francisco. As you may know, Salesforce.com recently acquired Radian6, one of the leading social media monitoring platforms. This was the first time the Salesforce.com and Radian6 team was together at Dreamforce and they put on quite a show.

Because many of the sessions at Dreamforce were focused on social media and social business (here’s an audio recording my talk on the ROI of Social Media), the Radian6 team was not only the star of the exhibition show floor, but cranked up the community team to listen, amplify and triage mentions of both brands, as well as others Dreamforce had purchased over the year, and show off it’s ability to be responsive and nimble despite a high volume of conversations on and off line.

To do this, Radian6 and Salesforce.com set up a command center at the Mosconi Center. They invited me in to check it out. While I was there, I not only got a chance to film what they were doing and show it off, but talk to Genevieve Coates of the community team about their efforts at the show and beyond.

As you’re growing your community team, you’ll hopefully find that example useful. It’s neat to think of building out a war room type setup in your physical location where individuals focusing on various pieces of your business are communicating across silos and routing issues to the right people quickly. Certainly, there are other examples, but looking at Radian6 and Salesforce’s temporary setup for an event gives you a good idea of where the concept can go.

How are you preparing to handle command of your social data and interactions? How many people are you devoting to the effort now? Please share your experiences in the comments so we all might learn. The comments, as always, are yours.

About the Author

Jason Falls
Jason Falls is the founder of Social Media Explorer and one of the most notable and outspoken voices in the social media marketing industry. He is a noted marketing keynote speaker, author of two books and unapologetic bourbon aficionado. He can also be found at JasonFalls.com.
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  • Thank you for the post! I am looking forward to following @radian6:twitter  and @twitter-76043715:disqus ! I think have a CES is a brilliant idea in which every serious organization should create and implement. I am going to enjoy sharing this with my peers. 

  • Thank you for the post! I am looking forward to following @radian6:twitter  and @twitter-76043715:disqus ! I think have a CES is a brilliant idea in which every serious organization should create and implement. I am going to enjoy sharing this with my peers. 

  • Jason awesome post SCRM is so important to every business serious about the customer.    Were seeing a big move to how big data plays a role were companies are going beyond listening into action.     We are due for a follow up.    @chasemcmichael:twitter 

  • Thanks for the great content on Social Media and CRM. This is the heart of the new methods called “Sales 2.0.” Someday a sales person will receive notification via the CRM that a potential customer has engaged enough with the brand (via Social Media ) that they will wellcome contact from a sales rep.

    • Thanks J.R. I think you can safely say that’s happening now with Salesforce and even some of its customers using Radian6 to capture those social conversations!

  • Great post, Jason. Interesting to think about taking some of these approaches by the “big guys” and implementing them into a small/start-up setting. Monitoring and engaging is important regardless of your size – just have to make it work.

    • Great point Courtney. Love to see how some smaller businesses are doing it, too.

  • Skeeter Buckley

    Nice bit Jason. Great stuff! How do you get all the backstage passes? haha cheers

    • I know people … Or know stuff on people. Heh.

  • Thanks for joining us Jason! It was great to have you experience our make shift command center and a great opportunity to chat about the exciting things we’ve been doing in Community!

  • Anonymous

    Indeed useful information for which I want to thank you. At first I did not believe my partners telling me that these days social media is the train to catch but after they showed me examples of how much you can boost your company’s online reputation using social media I have become very into promoting my business through means of social media.

  • Genevieve made an interesting comment about the different verticals their “embedded community engagement specialists” participate in… she said some of the conversations are more mature online, whereas others are not.

    I bring up this point because it just goes to show you how new this whole world of social is to most industries.  And, to think that there’s so much untapped potential in the less developed conversations makes for an exciting future.

    Great video, Jason.  This gave me some great insight into how a social media “team” is run in a company who’s at the forefront of this technology.

  • Very interesting!  One thing I would love to learn more about is how R6
    determines who on the engagement/community management team posts are
    routed to.  Is it just based on verticals?  How would you suggest doing it when you have a large volume of posts that need to be responded to around the clock?  For example, I have a team of 25 “engagers” and at any given time there may be 1-5 people working the “My Tasks” stack in R6.  It would be nice if R6 offered a group
    my tasks or other feature that allowed our engagers to work the posts
    requiring a response as they flowed in in chronological order.  The
    challenge we have is attempting to load balance across team members.  Would love to hear feed back on how other monitoring & engagement teams do this.

    • Good question, Leah. I’m sure a team member will probably follow up. They’re good at that. Heh.

      • Of course! Hey Leah, we’ve done some posts on this in the past explaining how we manage large amounts of mentions including an event focused series called the 5 W’s (http://www.radian6.com/platform-blog/2011/08/the-5-ws-series-lessons-learned/) that walks through some of the steps and lessons we’ve learned over time.

        I think the main thing that helps is having a process or playbook ready before you start tackling mentions. If you know what you are going to do with a certain type of post before it comes it, it does make the routing process a lot easier. As far as load balance goes, some of it comes in knowing what areas the members of your team excel in. Do you have 2 people who are get at 1 line responses? They could take a Twitter focus. Do you have a couple others who’s paragraph responses are amazing? Perhaps they could cover the blog space. It’s an ongoing process but knowing your teams abilities will help to make the response/engagement side much more comfortable.

        I’ve grabbed your idea of having a group My Tasks stack and will push that through to our product side for consideration.

        If there’s any other information we can share, just let us know! Always happy to chat :)

  • Great video interview Jason. I really loved how the rep at Radian6 told you about how they are listening to conversations in different vertical markets and taking that info to develop strategies for the different markets. Great launching point for strategizing.

  • Thanks for capturing the organized chaos of Dreamforce and the brilliant Radian6 Community Team! They certainly did and continue to do a fantastic job of filtering and responding to conversations.

    • Thanks, Lauren. Just wish you had been there, but proud of your new role!

  • Anonymous

    Great insight into SM community monitoring Jason!