Creating an RFP for Social Media Monitoring? Here’s What You Need to Know
So, you’ve decided that your organization needs a social media monitoring tool? Congratulations! You’re on your way to becoming an insight-driven company that is predicted by Forrester to grow at least 30% each year.
Now, you must begin the process of analyzing the available options you have for social media monitoring. Depending on the needs of your project, this can be a long and complex task. Fortunately, we have put together a Request for Proposal (RFP) creation tool to assist you in your search for the right social media monitoring partner for your business.
But First, What is a Social Media Monitoring RFP?
A Request for Proposal is a formal invitation to vendors to provide a service, as well as a financial and account management proposal, to companies based on a set of specifications.
Before you start creating your RFP, there’s one very important thing to consider: your social media funnel.
How to Define Your Social Media Funnel?
When creating your software tender, start by filling your social media funnel:
It is important to internally clarify what your social media listening objectives are, which will in turn inform which software solutions and providers would be the best fit for your organization.
Take the time to look at your organization, not just the features of your desired social listening tool. This includes:
- Your current organizational challenges
- Objectives of social media listening
- Business or project needs
What Makes the “Right” Social Media Monitoring Partner for Your Business?
Additionally, you should also examine your prospective suppliers or partners.
Whether you are on the lookout for a new tool to add to your marketing and insights arsenal, or analyzing your current social media monitoring provider, these are the four differentiating criteria to look out for:
- Organization: When was the company founded? What are the core businesses, products, and services offered? Were there any mergers, acquisitions, or mergers that affected the organization?
- Qualifications and experience: How reputable is the bidder in the social media monitoring industry? Has the bidder won any awards or credentials from independent research such as Forrester and Gartner?
- Service level and support: Is the proposed team structure adequate for your project needs? Does it include after-hours support and troubleshooting?
- Human resources: What are the areas of technical expertise and qualifications of the team that will be assigned to your social listening project?
Pro tip: It’s important to ensure that your assessment of all your potential social media listening partners is fair and data-driven. To do this, score them against a standard set of benchmarks defined by you or the team that will be utilizing social media monitoring the most. Start with this Social Media Listening Vendors Score template.
5 Things to Include in a Social Media Monitoring RFP
While every social listening project is unique, and tied to your objectives and the nature of your business, your social media listening RFP should ultimately:
- Outline all the relevant details of your company and project
- Identify your social media monitoring objectives and tool requirements
- Provide standardized criteria for selecting a suitable tool
- Streamline the selection process
- Ensure transparency with vendors
Here is a diagram that visualizes the requirements of your tender, and will help ensure you don’t miss any important aspects of the decision making and tendering process:
How to use this template: Adapt this guiding framework to the key structure and elements of your social listening project, before populating the necessary information for your final RFP.
Last But Not Least: Have You Considered the 5Ws of Social Media Listening RFP Creation?
With so many social media monitoring tools available now, it’s easy to be overwhelmed. Which tool works best for your brand? Where should you begin?
Follow these guiding questions to help you create your detailed social media monitoring RFP:
- What are my project needs?
- How much is my budget?
- What resources (time, manpower, etc.) do I have, and how much for my social listening project?
- Who are the key stakeholders?
- What kind of support do I need from my social listening provider?
Ready to start evaluating social media listening platforms for your company? Or have a tender process you are starting soon? Share your RFP with us!
Written by Jerome Maisch
Marketing Manager @digimindci. Passionate about big data & social marketing. Photography, music and hiking lover