Year In Review: Oracle Social Cloud

“Social is easy, any marketer could do it, hey, I could do it!” 

These are often words I hear from accounting, finance or IT friends yet unfortunately, this still represents a significant trend as to public opinion on the importance of having a solid social strategy in your marketing and sales mix.

Too often social is forgotten as anyone thinks they can do it and yet it never gets done.  Following on from my blog 12 months later: Oracle Marketing Cloud, I’ve been involved with Oracle Social Cloud for over 12 months now and I am taking the chance to share some thoughts on how social still creates value, changes I’ve noticed and offer some best practice advice.

I was talking to an Oracle Sales rep recently and he mentioned how the social and sales game is now changing. He leads every sales pitch with SRM as the value that this brings through listening capabilities, integration with marketing automation and determining your engaged influencers is more powerful than ever to a company and its sales people.

The truth be told and I’m sure you’ve heard it previously but social is much more than posting, likes and followers. It’s about creating meaningful engagement, providing value to customers and prospects and generating insight into trends and your competition.

Recently I attended the UXC Red Rock Oracle Leadership Forum where the target audience is predominantly data-driven middle-ware individuals and therefore not hugely aligned with marketing. However, as soon as we started talking to these delegates and the word social was mentioned, their eyes lit up and they wanted to know more about it and how they could get more social information to appear on their database. This would not have been in most delegates vision 5 years or even 3 years ago.

Social Listening

I’ve discussed this in detail in previous blogs yet I’m still going to hammer on about it.

The power you can get from strategic listening particularly through SRM is invaluable. Being able to scan over 400 million sites and pick out what you believe is important or identify trends before your competition can provide a significant advantage to being ahead of the curve in your marketing strategy.

One area I always discuss with clients first is the creation of topics based on your competition. You should all know who your closest competition is, if not jump online now and do some research.

Run topics on these companies and compare how your social strategy is based on your closest clients through the dashboard view. Filter in deeper and ask some questions; are they posting anything of interest, are you ahead of the curve, should you be doing anything further to enhance your strategy?

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Integrating with Marketing Automation 

Here is a quick and easy tip for you (for Eloqua users especially).

You’ve built a form on a landing page targeting an event and you want to track which social pages your contacts are arriving from.

We’ve developed a form that contains a hidden social field and code that provides whether or not they’re from LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter etc. If you want this code, give us a call and we’ll walk you through the process and send it over.

However, those with SRM can do this through dynamic link tracking. Dynamic tracking not only tells you where they’ve come from but it will add to your Profiler to create a single customer view, identifying what links your contacts are clicking on in social channels and which campaign resonated with them based on the parameters you set.

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Further, why not create a landing page with a form embedded and let it live on a Facebook tab. This is where you can use the Content & Apps function  You could potentially use this as an avenue to capture event interest and of course it provides another avenue to gain leads.

Social Station

One of the greatest additions to SRM that I noticed in 2015 was Social Station. Social station can provide live analytics and content based on your topics, resource data or content and apps.

The Social Media Mixer can be used smartly and be left running with very little maintenance apart from glancing over it to make sure the content is appropriate.

This app will enable content creation from the likes of Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Instagram based off keywords that you input. Examples where you can use this are on a reception screen, your website or at an event. Check out an example from UXC Red Rock Oracle Leadership Forum that we created using the hashtag of the days event #uxcrrforum2016. We left this running on our monitor, displaying everyones live social feedback during the day, much to the delight of passers by.

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Summary

SRM continues to provide solutions to Enterprise level social.

The hardest area of course is that the social landscape changes so rapidly and there are so many demands that being able to continually develop the platform to adjust to these changes becomes more reactive than proactive.

I’ll be locked in to any updates from Oracle Social in 2016 especially when image listening is introduced so keep an eye out for these and if you would like any further information on what social can do for your business, make sure to get in touch with us.