Integrate social media moderation
There is a clear answer -- to combine social media moderation with a brand management system. Social media moderation is a powerful and rapidly accelerating practice. It has moved on considerably from the early days of reactive moderation of forums by PR interns to spot or react to a crisis. Now, a properly run social media program is a fully staffed or agency-run full-time operation. Operatives on a single brand or product can number in the several dozens and be deployed 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Operatives have to be well trained, articulate, and passionate about their subject. They must proactively join conversations across Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and more on behalf of the brand by providing responses to consumers, multiplying discussion and campaign reach, guiding consumers to relevant resources, listening to opinion, and capturing sentiment.
More and more, the press is starting to take note of exceptionally well run social programs. Almost daily, advertising and business trades point to companies and brands that are a cut above in their efforts. And when a program is so effective that a traditional outlet such as Forbes pens a piece lauding the responsiveness of a video game's Twitter team, the irony is electric.
Social media moderation of this nature should be integrated into the ongoing brand management systems operated by major brands, rather than being a piecemeal or separate activity. It means the brand has a voice and an ear, but both are still on brand. It effectively creates the Holy Grail -- real-time brand management. It's "always on" while still being always on brand. Additionally, it also closes the gap, bringing brand managers and digital marketers together directly. However, the opportunity does not stop there.