great tips for social business

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Social is now a pivotal point for business transactions. Its no longer new and is mature beyond the point of being an enjoyable way to pass the time or play games. Social media is, however, young enough that best practices for social business are still being carved out the standard for enterprise integration of social media has yet to drawn.


  • 1. 8 Tips for Social Business8 Tips for Social BusinessIts important to state there is no correct level ofSocial Maturity. Its not a competition. You dont winby reaching the Social Enterprise stage of the SocialSocial is now a pivotal point for business transactions.Maturity Model, nor are you necessarily a betterIts no longer new and is mature beyond the pointpractitioner of social business by being there. Weveof being an enjoyable way to pass the time or playmerely observed that these stages exist and somegames. Social media is, however, young enough thatorganizations pass through them sequentially onbest practices for social business are still being carvedthe way to being a fully engaged Social Enterprise.out the standard for enterprise integration of socialOthers will stay at the Social Team or Advocate stagemedia has yet to drawn.permanently as the size and scale of their needsThe future of business engagement on all levels,simply dont justify the expansion and necessarywhether it be from a sales, HR, customer service or provision of resources that goes along with standpoint, is inherently social. Its whereWe do find its helpful for organizations to define whereyour customers dwell and is now the first language ofthey are in their Social Maturity in order to betterthe next generation of customers and employees alike.understand their present situation and, in cases whereYour business is becoming social, and understandingits appropriate, to prepare to scale and expand ahow is the key to success. This paper outlines thesocial offering. Ultimately its about knowing wherepath to success in eight simple steps that you can useyoure headed so you can do a little groundworkto implement and evaluate social within your variousbefore you get there.teams and departments. Social Advocate: This is social engagement at its simplest stage. At this stage, social isUnderstanding Social Business in the hands of a single individual within an organization. This person usually has strongWhat is social business, exactly? At the simplest level, personal social involvement and may havesocial business is when any organization engages withemerged from within the organization as a logicalan audience either internal or external, maybe both, leader in social, or perhaps hired specifically tousing one or many social platforms. This principle tackle social for the organization the social expert.applies to businesses of all manner, including boutiquefashion designers using Twitter to let eager bloggersSocial Teams: A Social Advocate can only do soand shoppers know that next seasons pieces aremuch. Enter the social team. Typically the Socialen route to retail outlets. Or maybe youre a globally Team is departmentally focused. In the early daysdistributed corporation using multiple social platformsof social, these teams were nearly all centeredto prospect for sales leads, amplify your corporatearound marketing or PR, but more recently wereculture to support HR, and allow teams to collaborateseeing the spread of social teams throughoutinter-departmentally, across time zones and diversean organization.cultures. Both examples could be described,reasonably, as practicing social business albeit theyoccupy positions on either end of a spectrum wedefine as the Social Maturity Model.2

2. 8 Tips for Social Business Social Business: Once you have a number of social teams operating in separate departments,Tip 1: Evaluate: youre on your way to the Social Business stage. A more telling and significant sign is the After taking stock of your organizations position way an organization handles the socially native on our Social Maturity Model, its time to ask a few concepts of openness and transparency. Is yourquestions. First, where have you already or where do organization having open dialogue in front of its you plan to deploy social programs and against which customers, partners, and even competitors?goals? In either case, avoid considering social in a vacuum. Take the time to understand where it best fits Social Enterprise: A Social Business operating your organization and how to integrate it into existing across time zones or cultures. You have good organizational and departmental goals. Youre not policy governing social engagement that reinventing wheels for social, just using it to make the empowers your teams to engage customers ones you have turn faster. directly. Youre turning the tools youve used to engage outwardly with customers inward toWhere will it allow you to reach the customers foster better internal collaborative practices. or stakeholders who most crave deeper, richer dialogue? Perhaps its the marketing department,The numbers support the increased application the traditional home of social media in business, butand scaling of social in business, particularly at the thats not a given. Pehaps its HR? Maybe youreenterprise end. A McKinsey Global Institute study better to consider developing a robust internal socialthat looked at applying social across the consumer ecosystem, harnessing the power of inward-facingpackaged goods, retail financial services, advanced social before you look outward? How are you goingmanufacturing, and professional services sectors measure and quantify the success of social programs?estimated social could contribute up to $1.3 trillion Look beyond vanity metrics such as Likes and Followsin value in those areas. A full two-thirds of that value and try, for example, to find a direct link betweenlay solely within improving communication and conversation and conversion. Focus on influence andcollaboration across enterprises, an area which is analytics over inflating a group size or follower base.hugely under-developed with the same report statingthat only 3 percent of enterprises are currently fully What can you reasonably afford to dedicate to socialsocially networked. But with over half, 52 percent,in terms of time and tools? The allocation of humanof managers confirming the importance of socialresources is far and away the most significant costto their business today and 82 percent agreeingtied to social. What will your team(s) look like? Identifyto its importance within the next three years, goodleadership within your organization or begin the huntpreparation and planning for the growth of socialto find it from the outside. With your team(s) in place,business, both inside and outside the firewall, is now educate and cross-train team members so that theytop-of-the-to-do-list critical.can be rotated across different areas of specialization. Empower your people. We practice this at HootSuite as a way of providing our people the ability to engage our customers multi-dimensionally rather than silo-ing expertise department to department.3 3. 8 Tips for Social Business Look for a reliable and scalable social tool that performing social properties, and share stories centralizes control over your social platforms andof success crafted by the teams that run them. puts the power to listen, engage, collaborate and Transferring knowledge and best practices from analyze in the hands of your do-ers, practitionersdigital leaders to team members further educates and experts. Make decisions about which platforms and empowers your Social Team to contribute to the you will be active on or where you may need toconversation. Should the need or the desire to scale consolidate existing accounts. Observe the largestyour social program arise, you have pre-trained your organizations in your industry vertical and learn next generation of social leadership. Your social from their successes and mistakes. Engage themtools should also be able to grow along with you, in conversation about the future of social in yourenabling growth by being modular and flexible to industry. Look deeper than the usual social suspectsfacilitate even further decentralization, expansion, like Facebook and Twitter to other platforms like and conversation. Quora or Get Satisfaction where you may have existing communities of powerful unpaid social advocates already at work on your behalf.Tip 3: Listen & Learn Tip 2: Organize The conversation is happeningWhile you want to centralize control over your social about your brand whetherplatforms with a social tool like a dashboard, you youre a part of it or not.want to de-centralize the conversations you haveover them. To do that, you need to empower your Seth Godin.practitioners and teams to engage your customers inconversation directly. Imagine the opposite of the hub Theres no question. People are talking about yourand spoke model fully distributed content creation organization. And if by chance theyre not, thenarising from each point of contact independently. The theyre talking about your competitors and starting aCity of New York (CNY), in moving toward achieving conversation youll have trouble being a part of. Donttheir goal of becoming the worlds leading digital city, let your organization get left behind. Amazon founder,embedded a Social Advocate in each of its agencies Jeff Bezos once described your brand as, whatallowing autonomous control over departmental people say about you when youre not in the room.messaging. Empowered autonomy of this kind Today, not only do you have an opportunity to be in thebecomes particularly relevant on a global scale where room but to take an active role in the conversation itself.a centralized approach may not respect or understandcultural differences at the micro level. Good search practices start with monitoring forConsolidate your efforts. Each CNY Social Advocate mentions the good, the bad and the ugly of your organization, but can also focus on topics related toalso belonged to a center of excellence run by the your business where you may wish to become anCNY Digital Media team that fostered collaboration, influencer. At HootSuite we monitor for off- as wellco-ordination on messaging and sharing of learning on-brand messages in ord