A New Category Defined: Social Performance Software

A new software category has emerged to bring performance marketing to social channels.

After interviewing over 10 software companies and 10 agencies, a new trend has emerged that will change the social business landscape. What is this trend? The marketing performance techniques to refine TV, Radio, SEO and other marketing mediums are now moving to the social space.   Read my definitive post on Mashable to learn how this impacts not only brands, but also Facebook and my long term predictions on how this will play out.

Market Needs
Companies are struggling to scale to keep up with all the conversations in this space, secondly, the noise is becoming deafening with everyone from consumers to brands all shouting in social that targeting is needed to cut through the noise. Those that deploy volume quickly find they’re part of the noise, and get cast by the wayside.  As a result, we’re seeing a new category emerge, called Social Performance Software.

Social Performance Software Defined
Software tools and methods that analyze, plan, deliver, and measure media such as ads, content, and conversations published in social channels. For example, they will analyze the conversations of your followers, then suggest which content and media to publish, then determine when to publish, on which channel, and to whom. As a result, content will reach the intended audiences and result in higher resonation, or higher call to action rates

List of Vendors focused on Social Performance
Here’s a list of the vendors, if you know of others, leave a comment below. Please note that this category stretches across a number of product lines, as this will be a horizontal feature set spanning nearly every social software company.

  • Adobe Social, which includes multiple acquisitions including Omniture and Context Optional.
  • BuddyMedia, offers both campaign platform marketing tools along with social ads with their Brighter Option acquisition.
  • Bazaarvoice, now has turned their earned content from ratings and reviews into a new social ad unit –even outside of FB.
  • Crowdbooster, analyzes, measures and then optimizes when content should publish.
  • Prosodic, which analyzes the who, what, where, and aids publishers.
  • Shoutlet, focused on larger scale companies can help with complicated publishing needs, at scale.
  • SocialFlow, analyzes your current socialgraph activity, guides users on content creation, then publishes at highest resonation.
  • Tigerlily, focuses on publishing content by theme, audience and location, increasing relevance.
  • UberVU, who first mines and analyzes data, then optimizes when content will publish.
  • Webtrends Social, tracks content and ads, and measures performance across these multiple locations.
  • Wildfire, a campaign platform marketing company has recently partnered with Adaptly to provide social ads and more

I’ve written other posts discussed why this trend will be important, one major industry force is that with Facebook and Twitter now offering ads (and new ad networks will emerge off FB and Twitter) we’ll continue to see social media agencies turn to advertising. I’ll be writing more about this space in the coming quarters, such as benefits and downsides of automation, and where this future will head.


  1. Jeremiah great article, as social media continues to evolve and becomes more adopted by businesses, I believe that social media management software will need to provide business solutions.

    I wanted to mention that Engage121 incorporates all of the functions mentioned above. Specifically, due to the multi-level publishing, monitoring, social ad placement, and measurement capabilities, inclusive of the SocialFlow integration for content optimization, Engage121 epitomizes the definition of “Social Performance Software.” I thought it was only fair to add it to the list. : ) Thanks!

  2. Aly Brady says:

    Jeremiah – really enjoyed this post and think it’s spot on. Did want to mention another company that fits on your list of vendors, though. Vitrue is a social marketing platform that, through the Vitrue Social Relationship Management platform, brings brands the tools to help them build and manage their social presence across Facebook, Twitter, Google + and other emerging platforms.

    To your point about how these vendors are increasingly providing tools to help marketers analyze, plan and deliver media – wanted to mention two recent enhancements of Vitrue’s SRM that really help marketers to measure the performance of their social strategies. In February, we announced a major upgrade to our analytics product – we now deliver more than 120 different metric types to our clients. These engagement metrics are more comprehensive than solely Facebook – instead it gives marketers a sense of their entire Web presence, as we integrate with Adobe Omniture, Webtrends, Google Analytics and Coremetrics. Basically everything in one place and in real-time. And secondly, last week we launched a new Media Partner Program that allows our clients to align their paid ads and owned media content strategies with enhanced workflow, analytics and insights, while maintaining their own relationships with the existing ad buyers of their choice. Now, we’re not only enhancing the owned media side, but the paid (and effectively the earned) as well.

    I can share more with you offline if you’re interested. Thanks again for your post. Looking forward to upcoming reports!

  3. Excellent article!

    HootSuite Social Media Management platform keeps up with all the trends leading the way in making the dashboard the most complete in the market. We do it through strategic alliances with partners that are innovative and leaders as us: to name a few we have integration with Adobe and SocialFlow.

    Thanks for always providing these excellent pieces of information to help spread the knowledge about Social Media.

  4. Thanks for this article Jeremiah!

    And thank you for opening the door to additions to that list, even if I come a bit late ;-)
    I think AgoraPulse (http://agorapulse.com) can be included to that list as it focuses on measuring the performance of each post on a Facebook Page in a unique way.

    To make a long story short, I have recorded a 5 minute screencast that shows exactly how these performance are measured: https://agorapulse.viewscreencasts.com/0ba0aa2b51e8adf6fa8bdf6daa331180
    The goal is to help marketers identifying the types of content that resonate with their audience (and those that don’t!)

    It also measures the days / times / formats that perform best. Performance being measured by the reach these days / times / formats get.

    Finally, the platform also allows to benchmark a page you manage against its competitors with very detailed analytics (not just fan growth ;-)

    Hope this helps!

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