Dave Chaffey
Dave Chaffey

Dave Chaffey wrote a very informative post on online brand reputation management and the tools you can use to get started.

With help from Michael Brewer of Clerestorey, Dave recently posted a comprehensive directory of the leading tools to support businesses in this highly important niche field. It looks at the market in 2009 and provides some predictions for 2010 and beyond.

So what are the brand reputation management and social media monitoring tools you need to know about?

Brand reputation management tools come in several forms, as do social media monitoring applications: listening platforms, reputation or online management tools, brand defense tools, social media monitoring or buzz tracking software, and consumer generated media (CGM) tracking. In some social media “campaign” management solutions, there are reputation features as well.

Dave divided the different social media and brand reputation tools in several categories:

Category 1: wide scope monitoring tools.

This group includes several companies, among which Radian6. The company positions the application as a social media monitoring platform for marketing, communications, and customer support. What you pay is tied to results. The analysis itself is based on sentiment, engagement, inbound links, vote count, or comment counts. It uses a flexible dashboard with as-it-happens alerts for monitoring all forms of social media and related comments. You can filter these results by country, by source, and by media type.

Category 2: blog-based.

The tools in this category focus on monitoring customers or commentators. Nielsen Blogpulse is one contender, with blog tracking for individuals, bloggers, and companies. It’s based on searches by link, keyword, phrases, Boolean query, and date range.

Category 3: PR, brand reputation and media management tools.

These are used for assessing opinion forming influence. Reputica is one player here; powered by iFeed, it’s a discovery and aggregation engine for social media.

Category 4: free social media tracking tools.

This category of social applications features a diverse range of companies, including Converseon, Who’s Talkin, Social Mention, Trackur, Viralheat, and Netbase Consumer Insights. Who’s Talkin is one of the many free tools in this category with a focus on monitoring presence in social media conversations.

Category 5: fraud protection, security, and threat detection.

This category lists five reputation management tools, including Filtrbox, a news tracking system. KnowEm is another one, designed for brand protection and security.

Category 6: news media tracking.

This is one of the least represented categories in the study, with only two companies worth mentioning, Newssift and NewsLive. Newslive bills itself as “Completely automated digital service plus all the benefits of a traditional, tried-and-tested manual clippings agency.”

Category 7: social media within sales management.

This final category looks at social media within sales management. It includes only one company, Inside View, and focuses more on identifying B2B prospects, with a CRM flavor.

What should we expect in the social reputation management market for 2010?

Dave provides some insights in his post, including the capability for image, video, logo, and photo tracking, integration of workflow, and direct intervention in dialogue.

Social media and reputation management tools will certainly become more important as more companies take an active interest in online brand management and social media. Probably, we will also see integrations with CRM, web analytics and cross-channel marketing solutions soon with acquisitions as a natural consequence.

It will be a competitive market as the evolutions in social technologies will enable newcomers to beat some of the existing players who don’t have the resources to move forward fast enough.

Check out the full list of tools per category on Dave’s blog.

Originally posted on i-SCOOP’s Social Email Marketing blog and moved as part of an integration.