We’ve seen it happen in the realm of demand creation; marketers have realized that being more analytical about their activities has led to more measurable results. Understanding your marketing data leads to better targeting, segmenting and the more optimized pairing of tactics and offers to drive better results throughout the waterfall. More and more organizations are realizing the importance of the marketing operations role to make this a reality. 

Now it’s time to see a similar role (and more) that applies the same analytical discipline to the seeding of demand, typically the responsibility of the reputation function in driving engagement and awareness. When it comes to social media specifically, we continue to see a lack of insight and analytics both in the processes companies use to measure and in the capabilities of the technologies that are designed to assist in defining, collecting and analyzing metrics without employing expensive services. You may gain some depth of information regarding your share of voice, sentiment and engagement, but how wide does this knowledge go and what is it telling you about moving the needle for driving business? 

Organizations need to take the solution into their own hands. Whether social operations becomes a specific role or a responsibility spread across a number of employees, the key is to take all the data and metrics you can collect to follow the social media breadcrumbs and connect the dots in ways that existing technologies and agencies can’t provide beyond traditional brand measurement. Sure, it’s useful to understand the demographics, habits and preferences of your networks and communities within Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn, but you need the insights that go across these multiple communities (and more) to not only better understand and serve your customers and prospects, but to be able to market to them more effectively as well.

So, who is responsible for social operations within your company and how do you see such a role evolving?