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Social Media Monitoring Tools

Orange8 a Swiss agency for online marketing tested a series of Social Media Monitoring Tools. The post is a bit older but has not lost its buzz.

Social Media Monitoring Tools have become one of the most important tools for CRM (or Social CRM), brand protection and crisis monitoring. The Social Monitoring System checks social media platforms, blogs, microblogs or forums for relevant posts.

The testers set different requirements for the tools they tested:

  • Central administration of brand-, competitor- and topic-tags
  • Localization of countries and languages
  • Widespread sources of data (many tool don’t consider Tweets)
  • Mood-analysis, demographic information, identification of influencer’s and important topics
  • Dashboard with KPIs as well as filter- and comparisons possibilities (mentions, reach, share of voice)
  • Lists of posts with information, reach and user-profiles
  • Possibility to store historical data
  • Workflows and pragmatic gateways to existing CRM-systems
  • Direct interaction possibility (e.g. Twitter directly from within the tool)
  • E-Mail-Alerts on delicate topics

Also the testers looked at several other points like the interface, the costs, infrastructure, manufacturer with the main core competence of analyzing and reporting. Therefore not all tools could be integrated in the test.

The different tools where chosen from Forrester Wave Listening Platforms, Q1 2009,  crunchbase.com and the Wiki of Social Media Monitoring Solutions.



Alterian SM2 (formerly Techrigy): Many good functions but not a too fun interface. According to the testers the interface was made new tough and should be easier to use now. Meltwater uses the SM2.

CustomScoop: This tool strongly focuses on media clippings, which is not the best solution for analyzing interaction. Also the interface is not built up too well.

Trackur: Very cheap but also limited in its functions.

Spiral16: Nice 3D visualization but not very useful for monitoring.

To be watched

Visible Technologies:  The tool seems to be capable of several functions, although it can’t solve the problem with sentiment or language monitoring.

Socialradar by Infegy: An easy tool with the most important features. A nice interface and a good price but not enough sources are scanned.

Buzzient: A tool with a strong focus on sales and CRM. The “classical” monitoring features don’t seem to suffice tough.

Dialogix: Very attractive but focused to much on Australia.

Filtrbox: Modern interface and easy to set up. Main focus is to collect and edit posts.

Attractive, but..

Meltwater Buzz: A tool with many functionalities, a good price and an engaged Swiss sales rep. The interface did not satisfy the testers. Additional platforms like Ebay are crawled. This could be interesting for special industries, like the watch industry.

Scoutlabs: A progressive tool with a lot of potential. It also integrates additional sources like YouTube or flickr and reports in a well arranged way. Drawback: The tool doesn’t offer any language specification. Some posts and sources were missing and the performance could be better. Also the tool doesn’t offer any influencer-search.

Viralheat: The tool is easy to set up. Dashboards, comparisons and monitoring of separate post are possible. With 9.99$ per month the functionality doesn’t perform too well tough. Language specification and sentiment analysis are not possible. Not so interesting for Europe.


Sysomos and Radian6 were the two that convinced the testers the most. Both tools have their pros and cons and are specialized for certain needs.


The tools comes form the PR-side of business and concentrates on the actual monitoring but also offers workflows. The posts and mentions that are collected threw keywords, are shown as widgets on a flash based work space.


  • Very flexible: multiple dashboards can be configured threw Widgets
  • Very fast set-up and nice work experience: with a click on a widget-element you get the direct details of the post. Also additional alert-mails can be installed
  • Tracks Google Buzz and integrates several picture and video-platforms
  • Comprehensive alert-mails
  • Good workflow-options (direct response to tweets, blog-comments, ect. directly from within Radian6)
  • Uncomplicated and fast customer service
  • High performance


  • Influencer’s can only be identified within the whole market and not in separated markets.
  • the prize is based on volume (mentions/posts) and can become expensive for bigger brands. Additional costs per user.
  • Language and country support could be better
  • Important Tweets and posts were missing

The Radian6 is very good for exploratory work (e.g. if you don’t know your agenda yet). The cost is relatively high and therefore better suited for smaller brands.

Sysomos Heartbeat

Heartbeat is a very nicely structured tool with a lot of love for the detail. The tool performs on a high level and the testers like that the screens can be filtered (e.g. all the Tweets on Levis in English with a positive sentiment). The keywords are defined centrally and even the own Facebook Fanpage can be monitored.


  • Well arranged and modern interface. The best interface of all the tested platforms.
  • The set-up is fast and the keywords are defined centrally
  • Very useful filter and comparison-functions
  • The keyword-net “buzzgraph” is more than just a tagcloud, it can show the linkages between the keywords and show “Key-Conversations”
  • The easy workflow allows direct Twittering and it even has a direct salesforece-connection
  • Customer service is very fast and cooperative – inputs get integrated within an hour.
  • The own Facebook Fanpage can be monitored
  • Good language and country support
  • Complete data and sources
  • In English the sentiment analysis delivers very good results
  • No users contingency and no volume prize-model


  • Price per queries and filters. This can be more expensive for companies that have many brands.
  • Alert-mails are not so nice.
  • Youtube and Google Buzz are coming soon.

The Sysomos is the best Tool for operative monitoring.

Read the whole article in German here

About Daniel Baur

Daniel Baur is a social media enthusiast. He holds a BA in Media- and Communication Science and an MA in European Business of the University of Fribourg. He is a passionate skier founder of several sports blogs and has recently discovered a wide interest in big data analysis.
  • http://www.sysomos.com Mark Evans

    Since Orange8 did the review, Sysomos has integrated Salesforce.com into Heartbeat, and made it possible to access Heartbeat directly from Salesforce.com.

    cheers, Mark

    Mark Evans
    Director of Communications
    Sysomos Inc.

  • http://www.social-brand-value.com Daniel

    … that’s what I call good monitoring :)

  • http://www.thoughtbuzz.net Shameer Thaha

    Great Article!

    I wanted to bring to your attention a fantastic and reliable tool for social media monitoring – ThoughtBuzz.

    ThoughtBuzz provides the best social media intelligence in just a click! It provides only relevant data and is an intelligent learning tool which gives you absolute control over the data without requiring you to spend lots of time and effort.

    You can obtain more info at http://www.thoughtbuzz.net or drop me a mail at shameer.thaha[at]thoughtbuzz[dot]net

  • laurenfernandez

    Thank you for the mention of Radian6.

    To address a few of your points on the Cons side (and if you'd like more detail, please feel free to e-mail me)

    1. We have a customizable influencer widget that can be made unique to specific brands. All industries are different and have specific needs.
    2. For language and country support, we partner with various resellers across the globe to help Radian6 customers. We work with them on messaging, options and customer approach.
    3. When pulling tweets, we pull from Twitter. If the platform has issues, it also causes issues on our end.

    We are always happy to go into more detail and provide information based on questions. Let me know!


    Lauren Fernandez
    Community Manager, Radian6

  • http://flavours.me/40deuce 40deuce

    Thanks so much for the great review. We're really happy that you like the Sysomos software and hope that others like it as much.

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