Building an Integrated Social Media Dashboard

I have been looking for way to monitor and track all my websites/blogs plus all my social media accounts (linkedIN, Twitter etc) from a single dashboard. I figured this would be pretty easy - a thing that most people would want to do! Not so - despite the abundance of great social media tools I found it surprisingly difficult to find one which met all my requirements.

SocialReport.com

Requirements for an Integrated Social Media Dashboard

Here are eight things I needed:

  1. Single Dashboard covering all web and social media (Essential)
  2. Good analytics with ability to change timeframes and drill-down (Essential)
  3. Ability to add in multiple accounts (e.g. team members twitter accounts) (Essential)
  4. Intuitive clean user interface (Essential)
  5. Facility to track various keywords (e.g. name mentions for reputation monitoring) (Desirable)
  6. Facility to post to all my accounts from a single screen (Desirable)
  7. Runs on smartphone (Desirable)
  8. Low cost (circa $10-$30 per month) (Essential)


SocialReport.com

The best match for me turned out to be SocialReport which met all of my requirements apart from smartphone support.

The Starter Version ($9 per month) covers requirements 1-4 very nicely.

To support requirements 5 and 6 you need the Business Version ($39 per month) which also allows you to setup up to 25 Projects (a project could be an organisation).

If you want to offer SocialReport to your customers you might consider the Agency Version ($79 per month) which also allows you to "white-label" the different projects.


Social Media Dashboard: Essential Requirements

To display your web stats you need to link social report to your Google Analytics accounts which is pretty painless. Beware that your web stats don't appear immediately and the system warns you it could take up to 24 hours to create them. However this is not an issue when you are up and running.

One clever thing you can do with Google Analytics is that if you use GA to track any URLs you promote as part of email marketing campaigns you can then also use SocialReport to include email these on the dashboard.

This means you can have you whole online activity summarised on one screen - very powerful!

To include in the dashboard social media accounts you don't personally own (e.g. Team Members) you simply set up additional SocialReport users and determine what privileges they should have within the system. You setup their user name and you select passwords rather than have the system email them a link so they can register and select their own passwords. This is a little strange and something SocialReport will need to improve. Then your team members can login and add their social media accounts to the dashboard without revealing their passwords to you.


Social Media Dashboard: Desirable Features

Social Content Syndication allows you single-click publish to all your accounts (much like Ping.fm) by setting up Campaigns (each consisting of text and a link) which is all integrated nicely you're your dashboard.

To track various keywords mentions you setup Discovery Agents (eg "Bioteams" or "The Network Enterprise") and are then provided with detailed graphs of when they occur on any of your channels.


Summary

In summary, therefore, SocialReport is one of the best tools I have found so far to support the creation of an integrated dashboard to manage all your digital/social media.

There are a number of other excellent tools with Hootsuite, Sproutsocial and Dashthis definitely all worth looking at as well in the Integrated Social Media Dashboard space.


Link to www.bioteamsdesign.com

About Ken Thompson

Ken Thompson delivers keynote conference speeches, workshop facilitation and in-house consultancy in four key business areas:

  1. Creating High Performing Teams in enterprises including Virtual and Mobile Teams (based on the Bioteams Book)
  2. Establishing effective Collaborative Business Networks enabling companies to co-operate effectively in areas such as sales and product development (based on the book - The Networked Enterprise)
  3. How to use the latest social media technologies including blogging and online communities to promote enterprises, brand, organisation or event
  4. Development of graphical on-line interactive Business Dashboards and What-if Simulators for organisations to support Performance Improvement, Strategy Development and Executive Team Development.



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I checked it out, and while I liked what I saw, without an integrated interaction dashboard, a la HootSuite or Seesmic, it seems like more work than it's worth for a small business or solo professional.

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