‘Social’ is the buzz word that is driving enterprises crazy today. This leaves C-level executives of enterprises asking many questions: Should we go Social? How will it impact my organization? What do others perceive of it? Will it impact my organization’s brand image? Below are some key points to consider while devising an organizational social strategy.
- Clear vision and objective for social strategy
Any organization that embarks on a social journey must come up with a clear vision and measurable objectives. Social strategy must address the questions: How does ‘social’ fit into the organization culture? Will it gel with the marketing objectives? What are the organizational efficiencies that social adoption addresses? Are there any social media strategies and policies that already exist in the organization? Are there any employee-initiated efforts (collaboration platforms, discussion forums etc.,) that are in use? If yes, are these efforts directed towards creating and nurturing the desired brand for the business? Should the existing platforms be leveraged, enhanced or shelved? Interviewing key staff among several different business units within the company will help in determining direction and social strategy for an organization.
- Unified social platform
Every organization, regardless of its size, must come up with a social strategy. In many larger enterprises, there exists different levels of social implementations. Some business units use them for collaboration, others for online marketing, customer conversions etc. It is important to understand the objectives, relevance and usage of the platform that suits each business unit best and then roll it up to the organizational business objectives. This will help identify the right go-to social platform that suits all organizational needs across business units.
- Change management
There is a great saying “Change is something which is always constant.” Any Social implementation will be successful if the organization embraces and adopts the change. Change is needed across various organizational facets like behavior, content, connection, communication etc., as any misuse of the platform may cause harm to the organization. The users must be formally trained on do’s/don’ts of the platform and the organization must make sure users can conveniently adapt to the change.
The key for any successful social media journey lies in engaging in the conversations, responding back to the customer issues and understanding their needs and behaviors using analytical data. Relationships and word of mouth have an everlasting impact on any organization’s brand. Employees must participate actively in the discussions, knowledge management forums, etc. for active internal communities to exist.
- Measurement of success
Clear and unambiguous metrics must be defined for measuring success. All the metrics must be tied to business objectives. As social media implementation is very domain specific, there is no one metric to measure its outcome. For example for customer relationship management (CRM), the measurement will be reduction of call center volumes, for eCommerce the measurement will be customer conversion, etc. Hence identification of social measurement tools is the key to success.Today, there is an imperative need for organizations to go social. The decision to adopt an effective social strategy must be one of an informed and collaborative approach considering various organizational dynamics, culture, business, etc.
Below are examples of measurable objectives for a social strategy:
• Vision – Build social strategy to increase customer reach
• Business Objective – Reduce the cost by 5% by implementing social strategy
• Social Objective – Reduce call center volume by 10% by implementing social strategy
Today, there is an imperative need for organizations to go social. The decision to adopt an effective social strategy must be one of an informed and collaborative approach considering various organizational dynamics, culture, business, etc.
We would love to hear your thoughts and experiences around implementing a social strategy for your organization. What challenges did you face? In what ways were you successful?