To drive enterprise ahead, we have to see social in a different way

What does it mean to be “market leader”?

You could say a leader is a brand that moves fast and is known for innovation. A brand that develops world-class products that solve customer problems in a unique way. Or even a brand that goes beyond participating in the culture, but actively defines and shapes the cultural conversation.

Market leaders are not just the companies we buy from. They are the brands we want to be.

And social media can turn those aspirations into reality.

At Sprout Social, we believe that realizing the power of the social begins by looking beyond the traditional marketing role that the social has played for the past decade. Social media is a valuable communication channel, but social media offers more than the conversations brands have with customers.

The extensive real-time data that social media provides can influence what we do, how we do it and who we do it for. Insights from the social field not only make a brand, but also a business. And in order to take full advantage of what social media has to offer, executives must begin to see social media differently.

Dream bigger with social

Changing a person’s perspective is always a challenge – especially if that change is meant to result in a change in behavior. To transform how social media is perceived, we need to go beyond marketing data and use it to generate business insights.

The messages people send to your brand show what they need and why they are behaving in a certain way. But what they post is just as valuable when they’re not talking to you. These conversations tell you how people see your brand, your competitors, and your industry. No other channel offers marketers such direct and immediate access to their target audience or paints such a clear picture of their unfiltered opinions.

Understanding this data gives teams outside of marketing a huge advantage, from product development to sales to customer support. It gives companies the cultural context they need to not only stay relevant, but also thrive overnight in the kind of transformation that we saw in 2020. These insights are why brands from a Fortune 500 financial services company to an NBA team rely on Sprout to understand their audiences, create more valuable customer experiences, and inspire brand promotion.

Business intelligence, powered by social media, takes away the guesswork associated with making strategic decisions. The ability to make these decisions with insight, confidence, and immediacy is the hallmark of a market leader.

Democratize the power of the social

All conversations about the potential of social media to transform a business are meaningless if marketers don’t have the tools to turn those conversations into action.

At Sprout, we believe that social media is at the heart of brand and customer relationships. That’s why we created a platform that enables companies to see the value of social media across the company and improve visibility and collaboration between departments. That’s why we’re continuing to improve our listening and analytics tools so companies can get more out of their social data and create better content, experiences, and products for their business.

For this reason, we also invest to further increase the value of the social in an organization. We want everyone from the social media manager to the business analyst to the head of research and development to use the social data they need to drive their business.

Businesses can only create real and lasting connections with their customers if they view social media as a focal point for consumer, industry, cultural and competitive information.

A change of perspective

Earlier I asked you to think about what constitutes a leading brand. Regardless of the descriptors you use, the path forward remains the same: the best brands are built with the best data and insights. And social media has shaped the possible in terms of business intelligence.

Social media is the source of data and insights that help brands manage, expand and grow their business across all departments. How brands use social media differentiates the market leader from those who simply follow.

The power of the social is its power to transform a company. It starts with seeing the social differently.

With the help of social data, marketers can test their hypotheses, optimize their strategies, and identify ways to better connect with their target audiences. Learn how to make data-driven predictions today, how marketers can use tools like social listening to move from reactive business decisions to proactive decisions with our guide.

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