Bryan Kramer

Posted on February 21, 2013 by Bryan Kramer 20

Social Intelligence

We are getting closer than ever before to achieving the highest level of “social intelligence” – meaning understanding the real time information we have access to that powers smarter decisions faster, and with more accuracy. Social media has both set the platform for us to become more intelligent and nimble and address the rising expectations of today’s customer. And, new tools continue to multiply exponentially to help us wrangle this platform/medium/channel. The question is… how do we get smarter about the way we manage this experience in using it to fuel more intelligent marketing, choose the right tools and communicate our insights to the right team, to keep raising our social IQs?

Here’s 5 ways you can energize your social intelligence:

Social Intelligence

1) Socially listen – There are plenty of social listening platforms available for small to large businesses. Being an advocate of social listening, I believe it’s the first place you should start when trying to grow your business or launch a marketing campaign. Social listening will be the death of focus groups – mark my words.

2) Benchmark – As of now, there isn’t one software tool out there that can help you custom build your benchmarks across every network available and allow you to track success as you go that I am aware of. But you have to start somewhere; establishing a baseline is the only way to set achievable goals. Don’t worry, you can always change them along the way, but it’s a critical starting point if you want to see how far you’ve come (or have to go.)

3) Engage – I know it sounds buzzwordy, but if you don’t reach out and build a community by engaging with actual “people” across your social channels, then it’s all for nothing. Stay persistent and don’t give up, this one takes a lot of time and consistency, but there are loads of intelligent people just like you that appreciate a great conversations – even in 140 characters or less.

4) Embrace change – In social, you’re going to hear the good, bad and the ugly about what you put out into the world. But business has evolved to the point where it needs to adapt and adopt new thinking quickly to survive, without fear of making a mistake and shifting mindsets. I agree with Steve Jobs, when he said that the consumer doesn’t know what they want until you give it to them. So give them your best ideas, and be open to the feedback when it comes. You might just hear something that sparks a better approach.

5) Automate – The human brain can only take you so far, and with so much data out there, it’s impossible to do everything I’ve talked about here quickly and manually. There’s no “magic set” of tools to help setup your baseline goals, but through trial you’ll find a combination that works. A word of caution: There are new tools born every day, and since it all happens so quickly, if you fall in love with one thing you might miss something else that could potentially help you innovate or engage much more quickly. Stay nimble, stay flexible.


KEY TAKEAWAY: There’s never been a more exciting time to sharpen our social intelligence. Use your human brain to create engaging connections and conversations to keep you evolving – and technology to help you with the rest.


I would love your thoughts or questions about this post, please jot it below. Also, be the first to receive each blog post by signing up at the top right of this page. Cheers! 

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  • Adam Goldberg

    Gaining insight into your audience and using that to create a social media strategy. Love it!

    Gaining insight into your audience and using that to create a social media strategy.

  • David Goldberg

    Gaining insight into your audience and using that to create a social media strategy. Nice!

    • Bryan Kramer

      Thanks David :-)

  • John Balauat

    Great post, Bryan.

    • Bryan Kramer

      Thanks John!

  • Amar Trivedi

    Excellent post, Bryan. (Love the Einstein graphic.) Savvy individuals and corporates see the world through a social lens. Marketing has always taught us to see the world through the customers’ eyes. However, with so much info out there (data), coping with it is challenging and we are yet learning… how to put it to best use. Strong customer relationships spell organisational success in the social era. And I agree there’s never been a better time to raise your social intelligence My blog post: Raise Your SQ: 

    • Bryan Kramer

      Thanks Amar, thanks for leaving a comment. You hit the nail on the head with “strong customer relationships.’ I will go take a look at your blog post now. Thanks for stopping by my friend. :-)

  • Claire Axelrad

    Nice post!  Really important to remember social media is merely a tool.  We’ve got to have a plan as to what we’re going to do with social intelligence once we have it.

    • Bryan Kramer

      Exactly! Thanks Claire :-)

  • Marco Schlauri from Swisblog

    Hi Bryan

    Thank you for this very insightful post. I was just wondering what are some of your favorite tools to monitor/track and engage on social platforms if you dont mind me asking?

    Thanks, Marco

    • Bryan Kramer

      Hi Marco, that is a tough one to call out top platforms. There are SO many that do so many different things.  We always start with the objective and then put several in place based on those objectives. I’ve been meaning to put a list together out there to publish, I just may do that now. Cheers :-)

  • Mark Willaman


  • Mark Willaman

    Great advice Bryan. This topic could easily be an ebook – there is that much to say. In the B2B space, some companies are learning the value of social intelligence, while others are slow to adapt. We’re seeing companies achieving great marketing successes as a result of using what we call social content marketing software, which allows them to identify trending topics and content (relevant to their business) and the journalists, analysts, and social influencers that are driving those trends by authoring and/or sharing content. Software can give us this information but success is dependent upon how we use the data. The company’s that use this information to grow their social connections, engage with key influencers, join relevant conversations, author more share worthy content are the winners and achieve marketing advantages over those companies that are sitting on the sidelines.

    Mark Willaman
    Founder and CEO
    SocialEars HR

    • Bryan Kramer

      I agree Mark. I think social listening is what ever business should put in place on some level before proceeding to the next step in product development, sales, marketing, HR, and as you mentioned for content development. Cheers! :-)

  • Shailesh Gururani

    Previously, a person’s IQ score was considered to be the determiner of future now the concept has largely been replaced by social intelligence. It’s also referred by the term ‘peoples’skills’. Every business today revolves around people. If you know how to handle people, the success is more likely to come to you. Now companies don’t hire on the basis of academic score of that person but on the basis of interview and what interviews reflect? nothing but the person’s social intelligence.A person regardless of his position in organisation, has to interact with different persons concerning his job and if he is not good at it he is likely to suffer.

    • Bryan Kramer

      Thanks Shailesh, I agree that it’s getting more challenging and we all have to stay sharp, on our people skills, both online and offline. Cheers! :-)

  • DebbyBruck

    Dear Bryan ~ Your suggestions will help many people to step out into society. At first, many people will feel discomfort to meet and speak with strangers; but, as a result they will expand their community and network of friendships. They will feel supported and find ways to service others to the benefit of everyone. Blessings, Debby

  • Sarim

    BASEE of Social Media! Nice..Thanks!

    • Bryan Kramer

      Thank you Sarim!

  • DavidCrowell

    Very true and well said. I wonder all the time how my kids will be growing up with all the collected information in the world.