Austin, Texas, is a city of cowboys and hipsters. River and concrete. Texas barbecue and vegan cafes. The people, the food, the music — everything simmers together to create a unique breeding ground for creativity and innovation. It’s no surprise that Spredfast — an advanced social media management system (SMMS) and OpenView’s most recent investment — is located in the heart of it all.
I recently had the pleasure of spending an afternoon in Austin at the Spredfast offices, meeting the team and exploring the platform. Over the course of the visit, two things became clear to me:
- Spredfast employees are awesome.
- The way we use and measure social media is changing in a big way.
After attending a wedding in San Antonio the weekend before, I drove to Austin on a Monday morning (the two cities are only about an hour and a half away from each other) and headed to Spredfast. If you’ve read my previous posts, you know that I’m a social media junkie, so I welcomed the opportunity to experience Spredfast in person and receive platform training from the on-boarding team.
I met Brittany Edwards, Marketing Manager, for coffee before visiting the office, during which time she prepared me for the fact that it was the entire team’s first day in a new office. While I was surely in the way, they made me feel nothing but welcome. It was perhaps telling that although the office was still being settled, a pirate flag had already been hung from the ceiling.
I wandered around for a bit, introducing myself to the team and receiving some excellent Austin restaurant suggestions in the process, and then met with Meghan Brindley, Social Training Manager, and Unji Udeshi, On-Boarding Manager, to learn my way around the platform’s posting and measurement capabilities.
Allow me to preface my assessment with an acknowledgement that OpenView is an investor in Spredfast, but I’ll follow that with the sentiment that I can see why. Spredfast is the most comprehensive social media management system I’ve experienced — as Meghan put it, clients tell her they’re both excited and slightly intimidated by the platform’s capabilities. The Spredfast team breaks it down into five key areas of focus, allowing users advanced functionality around:
- Organization: Spredfast allows you to create and manage multiple social initiatives, assign appropriate permissions to users, and coordinate actions and approvals across teams.
- Daily Engagement: You can schedule and publish across multiple channels while monitoring engagement and responses.
- Enterprise Repository: Spredfast is an information powerhouse. The platform lets you share content internally, keep records, and meet compliance needs.
- Social Platforms: Spredfast syncs with pretty much everything: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, YouTube, Flickr, SlideShare, Blogs, you name it.
- Analytics and Reporting: This was the most impressive part for me. The system integrates with Google Analytics and Omniture, and performs in-depth analysis to help you understand who is interacting with your content, when they’re doing it, and how best to reach them.
I was amazed, but not surprised, by Spredfast’s extensive service offerings. Social media is no longer being viewed as an option or a “nice-to-have” for most organizations — it’s a necessity, one to heavily invest in.
Organizations aren’t winging it anymore, either. They want to understand the impact of everything they’re doing and how it’s helping their vision and brand. It will be software like Spredfast’s that revolutionizes the social media industry and how we determine the much-discussed (but little understood) “social media ROI.”
Thanks to everyone at Spredfast for their hospitality and kindness (and the barbecue recommendations). I can’t wait until my next visit to Austin!