My first encounter with Marketwire’s Sysomos tool dates back to about a year ago during BlogWorld 2011 in NYC. During one of the sessions on social media, the presenter was asked about what social media monitoring tools they preferred. After Sysomos was mentioned, Ric Dragon signaled to me to take note of the tool. I sent a tweet to the company and it was fielded by Sheldon Levine—the community manager at Sysomos, Inc. Sheldon—who was also at BlogWorld— introduced me to the Heartbeat and MAP tools during a lunch break. For a brief time, Heartbeat was the choice tool at DragonSearch for one specific client. Due to our prior positive experience, Sysomos was immediately cited as an option when sourcing a social media monitoring tool to use at an agency level.
Similar to Visible Technologies, both Sysomos MAP and Heartbeat cover the basics required of any social monitoring tool: exportable reporting, influencer scoring, archived data, individual campaign tracking, email alerts, etc. However, the two tools differ in few aspects that are reflective of an agency’s needs.
First, MAP is an analytics-focused tool that allows for users to access up to one year of archived data. Heartbeat, on the other hand, only includes 30 days of search data with the option to upgrade to one year’s worth. Sysomos Heartbeat is a workflow tool, allowing users to respond to mentions through various social networks or assign tasks for follow-up. These are both features that are not included in Sysomos MAP. However, Sysomos MAP does allow for ad-hoc search queries, which can be helpful when agencies are researching a prospective client. MAP also offers Google Plus integration; Heartbeat does not.
From my experience with Sysomos Heartbeat, I was very fond of the tool’s user interface, aesthetic appeal and integration of word clouds. The spam filters were also top-notch, with very few (if any) unsavory results coming through. Another perk of both Heartbeat and MAP is that unlimited search results are allowed, so hitting a cap and risking overage charges will never be a fear.
Both Sysomos Heartbeat and MAP have a lot to offer, but they did not quite make the cut for DragonSearch’s ideal social media monitoring tool. First, let’s take a look at the Sysomos pricing. Sysomos MAP—which offers unlimited search queries and results—costs $2,750/month. For $3,000/month, one can access nearly all the same features in addition to workflow management with Visible Technologies. Considering both require a one year contract, the price difference is small enough to warrant splurging for the higher priced tool.
Sysomos Heartbeat is less costly; however, it is not intended for managing multiple clients. The starting plan is $550 per month with a $500 setup fee. This plan includes five search queries with a total of ten tags and unlimited results. While DragonSearch was a client of Sysomos, we used this plan for one of our larger-budget clients and we were quite happy with the results. The next plan up is $1,100 per month which includes with ten queries, twenty-five tags and twenty-five users.
With Sysomos, I encountered the same hang-up as I had with many other tools: there was not one option available that did everything our agency needed. While MAP and Heartbeat each have their uses for agencies as well as individual organizations, the porridge was either too hot or too cold for DragonSearch.
Sysomos Heartbeat is a wonderful tool for agencies that require monitoring and work-flow for one or two specific clients. For an organization’s internal marketing team, Heartbeat allows comprehensive monitoring on a brand-specific level. As for Sysomos MAP, this tool works perfectly for an agency that is focused on analytical data with no interest in workflow management. With both tools offering the unlimited search results feature, Sysomos is an ideal option for national brands.
Sheldon Levine, Sysomos’s Community Manager, is always a tweet away and offers some great insight on both MAP and Heartbeat’s functionality. If you have questions in regards to Sysomos MAP or Heartbeat, you can contact Sheldon at [email protected] or @40Deuce on Twitter.