The social media sphere is an increasingly noisy place, especially for brands. But hiding somewhere in the static, some companies are sending strong signals that reaches their customers in innovative ways. The Dachis Group has recently begun a real-time ranking of which companies have the most effective social strategies with their Social Business Index. Each Friday we're taking a tally of who's getting heard, what they're saying, and why it matters.

The top twenty companies in the Social Business Index enjoyed a pretty quiet week, this week. National Amusements managed to hold on to the top spot after ousting News Corp. with its successful social media engagement around the television programming for its subsidiaries, CBS and Viacom. The rest of the leading ten brands stayed still except for a one-rank drop by Coca-Cola. With The New York Times holding its own, the next ten companies swapped places, but none of the brands made any notable moves. For the real action this week, we had to look was down the rankings to Unilever, Domino's and LG. Each of the brands saw double-digit jumps in ranks, all of them thanks to highly effective Facebook strategies. The holidays, it seems, is a great chance to get people talking by offering them gifts.

LG surged 35 spots up the rank and dipped into the top 100 at No. 95 this week with the help of some massively successful Facebook campaign. In seizing onto the holiday shopping rush, the company has been drumming up conversation with its "LAY-Z SANTA One Gift a Day" campaign that offers a free LG Optimus 3D and Optimus Black to fans that take a short quiz. The LG Mobile Facebook page defaults to the promotion, which is giving away one of each device every day until December 21. Analysts at the Dachis Group tell us that activity on LG's page is up 400 percent with the help of two videos that campaign released this week.  Meanwhile, LG USA page activity doubled thanks to another contest that offers fans the chance to submit a photo that will show up on LG's billboard in Times Square on New Year's Eve. "In addition to the contest, LG Electronics has maintained a steady and varied stream of conversation content with topics ranging from family holiday traditions to several historical references to this week’s moment in time," said Doug Kern, vice president of product marketing at the Dachis Group.

Like LG, Unilever enjoyed a particularly successful week in social media rising 12 spots to No. 35 thanks to Facebook. Unsurprisingly, the always attention-grabbing brand Axe drove most of the conversation. Axe's Facebook page hit two million fans this week, helping boost the brand's the dynamic signal it sent across the web rose 18 percent. "To celebrate, Axe is hosting the “Axe Awards,” and as part of a larger initiative, has been hosting Girl Talk concerts all over the country," Kern said. "These events align nicely with the brand’s positioning [as stated in their Twitter bio]: 'More than just a discussion about products for guys … Parties, music, sports …" Unilever's other brands are doing well, too. Dachis analysts tell us that activity on the Dove Facebook fan page is up five percent thanks to successful calls for people to share tips on how best to take care of your skin during the winter months. The obvious answer: Buy Dove products.

Finally, some positive action from the company that invented the Pizza Tracker! Surprisingly, the transfixing, social media-friendly order tracking tool didn't have much to do with Domino's' strong showing in the Social Business Index, jumping ten spots to No. 85. And once again, it's Facebook that generating the buzz, in part thanks to Domino's being busier than most brands on the social network. That and the awesome-sounding Pizza Hero iPad app. "Domino’s page boasts 4.3 million fans, and the brand receives ample engagement (likes, comments, shares) from those fans -- even when the brand posts multiple times a day," Kern said, adding that Domino's is exceptional when it comes to Facebook strategy. "We frequently see 'fan fallout' when other brands post more than once per day." The typical social media-based promotions partially explain the success, with lots of teasing details of "Global Domino's Day" on December 8th, when the company will offer a 50 percent discount to anybody ordering pizza through its Facebook page. Back to that iPad app, though. Pizza Hero is part game, part next generation Pizza Tracker. The game challenges customers to design pizzas as quickly as possible and share them with friends, who can rate them. You can also order your custom-built pizza straight from the app. Now if that doesn't sound like a fun Friday night activity…

Methodology: A project of the Dachis Group, a social business professional services group, the Social Business Index analyzes the conversations on social platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and othrs. The index, which currently covers approximately 25,0000 companies and 27,000 brands, detects behaviors and activities exhibited by these companies, analyzes their execution and effectiveness at driving outcomes such as brand awareness, brand love, mind share, and advocacy. The Atlantic Wire takes a snapshot of the rankings at the close of business on Thursdays.