Waltham, Mass.–based Mzinga provides social tools, solutions, and services for marketing, support, and sales professionals — and claims to have more than 40 million users and 15,000 communities already under management. With the latest release of its flagship platform OmniSocial, Mzinga is introducing expanded analytics capabilities, greater interoperability with sites such as Facebook, and new mobile applications.
The previous OmniSocial release focused on uniting external and internal communities. According to Dan Bruns, the company's senior vice president of advanced technology, the new iteration enhances the platform in four areas:
- New features and functionality. These deliver improvements in the platform's 30 applications (ranging from blogs to sites to communities) and greater interoperability with Facebook and Microsoft SharePoint
- Analytics and dashboards. Such reporting may include metrics on content topics, user engagement, influence, and user reputations. The analytics enables users to measure their own communities as well as outside social networks. Companies can then benchmark their communities against others.
- Platform and infrastructure updates. Users now have a choice between running on a public or a private cloud operated by Mzinga, and administrators are now given better control and privacy options.
- Mobile applications for iPhone and BlackBerry. "It's important for end users to consume and participate using whatever device or mechanism they are most comfortable with," Bruns says. The applications are fully configurable to match a company's branding.
Mzinga was placed in the Visionaries segment in Gartner's recent Magic Quadrant for Social CRM., and among the Niche Players in the analysis firm's Gartner Magic Quadrant for Externally Facing Social Software report. The analysts note that Mzinga has a wider range of applications than any other similar provider, including 30 applications, 40 widgets, and multiple dashboard reports and benchmarks. Gartner acknowledges Mzinga's burgeoning effort to interoperate between private-label and public social networks, such as Facebook and SharePoint, but notes that such interoperability is behind some of its competitors. The report additionally states that Mzinga has not proven the ROI of its applications as well as some of its direct competitors.
Mzinga provides a full suite of services around its social platform. "We are finding out that companies know they have to do something with social media," Bruns says. "If they don't know exactly what, or they don't have a full strategy, our consulting can help facilitate that."
Bruns insists that Mzinga's goal is to let its customers deploy the software in whatever mode they would like--as well as integrated with whatever tools they regularly use. "It has become essential to socialize and to bring interactions among people into common business practices," he says.
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