Kenshoo platform tops Forrester list for social advertising capabilities

New report into seven social media advertising platform providers analyses their ability around campaign creation and workflow, analytics, optimisation, social network partners and more

A new Forrester report evaluating social advertising platforms has nominated Kenshoo as the leading vendor solution thanks to its broad range of search and bid management capabilities.

The Forrester Wave: Social Advertising Platform Wave, Q4, 2013scored seven companies providing proprietary platforms for managing social advertising on a host of factors ranging from offering and strategy to market presence.

Forrester defines the social advertising platforms as those that help marketers buy, manage, optimise and measure ads on public social networks such as Facebook and Twitter.

Kenshoo scored the highest rating of 5.0 in 25 areas including campaign creation and workflow, reach campaigns, audience targeting, keyword and topic targeting, optimisation and efficiency, social network data import and export, analytics and APIs.

The vendor was also the single ‘leader’ for social ad platforms in terms of strategy and offering. Five software vendors were noted as ‘strong performers’: Marin Software,, Unified, Shift and Optimal.

Forrester said Kenshoo was the “surest” option for a mainstream marketer looking to invest in social advertising, even though it has one of the smallest user bases. The vendor also gained the maximum 5 points in eight customer satisfaction questions.

“Kenshoo is the social advertising platform category leader,” the report authors stated. “Kenshoo has leveraged its leading capabilities in search and bid management to jump out ahead in social advertising as well. Kenshoo dominates thanks to its strong core platform, integrations with other tools, international capabilities and strategy.”

In comparison,’s was an easy to use platform with a global footprint, and its proposed integration of Buddy Media and Radian6 offerings promised to deliver strong capabilities to marketers, Forrester said. “At the same time, there is no single area in which has pushed its offering far past the competition,” the report stated.

Marin Software’s search advertising solutions gave it a “leg up in analytics and optimisation”, Forrester continued, and offered tight integration between newer social offerings and core search bid management features. However, its social tools had not kept up with its advertising functionality and the platform offered the least advanced keyword targeting capabilities.

Unified offers strong cross-platform social capabilities and covered the fundamentals well, the analyst group claimed, and the vendor was one of the most advanced in terms of broadening social advertising onto the next generation of social networks including LinkedIn Ads APIs. Against this, the platform proved the weakest at mobile advertising, analytics and optimisation.

Twitter opens up targeted advertising for marketers
Facebook news feeds get video ads
Instagram reveals look and feel of ads

Shift led the way for collaboration tools and partnerships, helping advertisers, social marketers and agency partners to work together to run campaigns. But it lagged in ability to optimise marketing spend and analyse results, Forrester said.

Optimal specialises in social reach across multiple platforms and in brand marketing, with the strongest capabilities around enabling campaigns across multiple different social networks. It was, however, limited to Facebook and public social networks.

Forrester considered Nanigans as a contender for specific marketer needs and noted its unparalleled optimisation on Facebook, but said the solution need to mature the platform’s ease of use and breadth of capabilities.

The Forrester report was based on vendor surveys, scenario-based product demos and customer reference calls.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO Australia conversation on LinkedIn: CMO Australia, or join us on Facebook:

Signup to CMO’s new email newsletter to receive your weekly dose of targeted content for the modern marketing chief.

Join the CMO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Supporting Association

Blog Posts

Building e-motional connections with customers

The warm weather is upon us. It’s a time of year often associated with the blossoming of love and relationships, which has me thinking about how marketing has leaped forward in its ability to build emotional connections with customers.

What happens when the 'market' becomes a 'customer'?

One of the insightful things that has been said to me recently came from an independent consultant working at a major FMCG client. He said: “The problem here is that we have some people who are world-class at marketing to the masses, but they haven’t got a clue about how to speak to a customer.”

3 Metrics to measure B2B content marketing ROI

Content marketing has become a key pillar for marketing departments of all sizes across the world. But how do you measure – and ultimately prove – the effectiveness of the time, money and energy spent on content marketing?

Customer Identity Management is becoming critical for enterprise companies looking to create meaningful interactions with their customers...

Michael Mitrakos

Customer identity management as a revenue driver for CMOs

Read more

Informative comments , I loved the info , Does anyone know if my assistant could get ahold of a blank 2011 IRS 8804 - Schedule A document...


Telstra unveils fresh digital content media services

Read more

So, the one thing I would say is .. the customer already has a voice, whether you wanted them to have one or not .. and they have a platf...

Paul Gilbert

Why digital strategy equals customer experience

Read more

Appliances online are doing a good job online, but they're still not giving customers a truly powerful online experience in my view. Wher...

Graham Howlett

Navigating the future of omni-channel retailing

Read more

For both businesses and marketers alike who want a digital marketing platform that supports data visualization, integrated analytics and ...


Adobe to bolster analytics capabilities of Marketing Cloud with Digital Analytix acquisition

Read more

Latest Podcast

More podcasts

Sign in