The Green Sheet Online Edition
September 24, 2012 • Issue 12:09:02
Bringing social order to business
Merchants often lack the tools and time necessary to engage customers through social media. With the rising popularity of social media, one negative review placed on a prominent social network can quickly damage the reputation of a business - if left unchecked.
To help empower merchants, a team of information technology professionals with extensive coding and user-interface experience in merchant- and consumer-centric processing collaborated to develop The Social Merchant, an online communications hub. The platform enables merchants to connect to major social media websites where they can create and monitor social activity, explore customer reviews and ratings, obtain competitive analyses and manage other social media functions.
The TSM dashboard allows merchants to control all social media and access multiple Internet profiles using a single login. When monitoring the major networks, users can view comments in real time and respond quickly to customer concerns, TSM said. The Competitor Watch feature monitors competitors' offers and promotions and reveals what consumers are saying about the competition.
Taking it a step further, TSM lets merchants view who is interacting with their businesses and how customers are sharing merchant social site content. According to TSM, merchants can categorize fans and uncover key influencers within the group, flag activity by keyword to highlight relevant events or brand-related terms, tag posts and comments, and assign and prioritize tasks for staff.
TSM's reporting and analytics functions allow users to export data from multiple networks with detailed charts for monitoring the progress of social campaigns and activity. And it integrates with online tools like Google Analytics as well.
Built-in templates for creating Facebook pages can be updated to reflect coupon offers, contests or special promotions that can be prescheduled for publishing at a later date. Merchants can define terms and conditions, such as placing limits on the number of items available, setting minimum purchase requirements or restricting dates. Merchants can also incorporate quick response and bar codes into their online social media campaigns, the company said.
TSM offers three monthly plans, which are based on the number of store locations. The Storefront plan features standard reporting for one location; the Main Office plan delivers multilocation reporting for merchants with 2 to 4 locations; and the Enterprise plan provides custom reporting for merchants with 5 to 10 locations.
The Social Merchant
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