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Bringing Management On Board with Social Media

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PodCamp NH session. Bringing Management On Board with Social Media by Diane Vautier

PodCamp NH session. Bringing Management On Board with Social Media by Diane Vautier

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  • Bringing Management on Board with Social Media.
    Diane Vautier @dvautier
    ActiveEdge @activeedgeteam
    If you’re here, you’ve probably experienced some challenges with getting the OK to include SoMe as part of your marketing mix OR you want to try and approach the topic.
    This picture might be what you’ve experienced (or expect to experience) when asking.
  • You may meet (or may already have met) with resistance. In fact.
  • Or you may even hear a flat out No!
  • What’s a Savvy Marketer to do?
    You know Social Media is the right marketing path yet you just can’t seem to make any headway in getting management to agree.
    There’s hope. And a plan.
  • We’re going to focus on moving from No to Yes to bring top management on board.
    Notice on the bottom I’ve illustrated the level of disapproval and/or approval. That’s important to keep in mind as we move through this presentation.
    Double bold red = really against Social Media. Bold red = Somewhat against it, but not emphatic Regular Red = Has a negative impression but may not really know enough to dislike.
    Double bold green = enthusiastic about SoMe, heavy user. Bold green = has accounts, low to med. Usage. Regular green = may have account, but inactive, not really opposed, but just may not know too much about it.
    I’ve broken it down into steps to make it easier to attack
    About 10 steps (give or take) to bringing management on board with Social Media.
    Ok, so let’s jump right in with step one.
  • Establish yourself first so you understand the Social Media ecosystem and how the various Media work.
    Don’t expect to learn everything on company time. Invest some of your own time to learn as well. You know that already since you’re here, listening to me, and gave up your weekend to attend PodCamp.
    Start with the basics: Microblogging, Blogging, Social Networks, Photo Sharing, Video Sharing, Presentation Sharing, Bookmarking and Commenting and platform (add more skills) as you learn. This isn’t a definitive list, and you may want to add accounts incrementally, but it does give you an idea of where to start.
    Use www.namechk.com to see what ‘handle’ is available across most platforms.
    Practice with your own accounts first and you’ll be able to apply what you’ve learned for your company.
  • Add analytics NOW.
    Doesn’t have to be Google, but put something in place now so you can at least start monitoring things.
    Adding some sort of analytics will help you establish benchmarks, see trends and quantify progress.
    If your company already has it, gain access to it. Ask IT or who ever controls it to add you as an administrator.
    You’ll need it in place so that when you get the ok, you’ll have some benchmark data to start with.
  • 3. Now we can start doing our homework. When we start digging into things, here’s what we’ll be looking at: Competitors, Customers, Suppliers, Your specific Industry and the Social Media Industry in general.
  • 3. How we look at those things (competitors, customers, suppliers, industry and SoMe Industry) will be organized. We’ll use two tactics. Both tactics are types of audits.
    The first is to establish a listening station
    The second is to monitor the activity of the groups listed above.
    Lets look at Listening Stations
  • For the first type of Audit, we need to set up what Chris Brogan and Julien Smith (in their book Trust Agents) call a “Listening Station”.
    How many people have an RSS feed set up?
    For those of you who don’t know or haven’t started using RSS (Really Simple Syndication), you’re going to love this.
    Like a personalized newspaper just for you. You opt in to what you want to follow (or listen to) and it automagically get delivered to you. You get to browse the headlines of stuff you know you’re already interested in and read what is interesting.
    I use Google Reader. You do have to have a Google account to use it, but it’s worth it.
    Once we get this set up then we can start subscribing to feeds.
  • So what do we want to listen to? Let’s go back to our list of What we’ll look at – and start with Competitors
    Competitor Blogs. Find out what your competitors are talking about. Chances are, it will be something that’s of interest to you or your own customers.
    Search mentions – on Google, Bing. (Google Alerts) Follow an individual’s name, the company name, or even products. Enter a search string. Copy the url address to your feed reader.
    Twitter – follow people, places, hashtags, or even geographic search. Go to search.twitter.com or other twitter search engine. Enter a search string. Copy the url address to your feed reader.
    *LinkedIn & Facebook – in the beginning of 2010 Google Reader introduced a Track changes feature. Allowed non RSS pages (like LinkedIn search results page) to be turned into RSS feeds to track any changes to a company page (such as new hires, etc). This feature was turned off as of September 30, 2010.
    Alternatives to convert and subscribe to search RSS:
    http://grtransition.page2rss.com/
    http://feed43.com/
    http://feedity.com/
    http://www.feedyes.com/
  • Find hash tags at
    http://twubs.com/
    http://wthashtag.com/
    http://tagal.us/
  • Don’t forget to follow Social Media Research to see trends in adoption.
    You’ll more than likely have to teach people about this fast growing type of communication and justify it’s existence so you may as well know as much as you can about it.
    So that ties up how we’re going to organize our listening station for the topics we want to follow.
    Next we’re going to look at the 2nd type of Audit which is an activity summary.
  • Remember in the beginning of the process when we signed up for all those accounts? Now we get to use them to do some snooping.
    Let’s start with competitors. Pick the top 1 - 3 companies. Identify the main players in the company (check LinkedIn for the company employees, or ask co-workers who the top dogs are at ABC and XYZ companies.
    Got em? Great. Now find them to see if they’re online and how active they are.
  • To compile the information I set up a simple spreadsheet.
    Here we have 2 competitors. I’ve identified the important people and listed the most common Social Media Platforms. I threw in FourSqare since geo-location is an up and coming area (some people may prefer to check Gowalla).
    Notice the line across the bottom. We’ve seen this before – in moving from No to Yes. The boldness reflects the intensity.
    Obviously we can’t know our competitors intensity of how much they hate or love social media (unless we know them personally). But we can observe their online presence and estimate this.
    Here we see Competitor #1 doesn’t appear to really hate it, but they aren’t really taking advantage of it’s potential just yet.
    Competitor #2 is far more accepting and actively using it to communicate (potential with your customers).
  • Customer #1 no strong dislike of social media. May indicate they just don’t know enough about it to adopt it.
    Supplier #1 There is high adoption and activity.
  • You also do this same process for your specific industry if you wanted. You could identify the top industry leaders and audit their activity to see if they’re adopting the new form of communication.
    Now what do we do with this information. We turn inward for some internal auditing and team building.
  • Now that we’ve explored things outside our company, let’s turn our attention inward.
    Stakeholders: find out exactly who has the authority to approve or deny the company’s participation. Maybe that’s one person, maybe that’s a BOD, maybe a partner.
    Find out who is already using it. You may not know it, but your company’s employees may already be using Social Media and those personal talents can become part of your company’s professional presence online.
    Here’s what to find out.
  • Look familiar? It’s the same simple spreadsheet that we used to evaluate external factors like competitors. Since it’s in-house, you’ll have a much better idea who is really for or against adopting Social Media.
    Ask stakeholders directly and then even ask some other people in the company that may be inclined to use it. Ask if they’ll be willing to contribute 15 minutes or more a day toward the company’s social media plan.
    NOW HERE’S AN IMPORTANT THING TO REMEMBER: EVERY CELL (intersection of a person or a company with a social media platform) IS A POTENTIAL CUSTOMER TOUCH POINT.
    Looking at this example we see lots of bold red “No”. Lots of bold red is a clear indicator that this company is not interested in communicating with customers.
    What can we learn from this? This example is actually an engineering firm that I’m very familiar with. In this case one of their suppliers of CAD software is actively using Social Media and in fact is integrating SoMe into the next software release. (see customer supplier spreadsheet example). Their customers are not quite as Social Media savvy but are not adamantly opposed to it.
    What does that mean for this engineering firm? They had better start being an active participant in that space since by all accounts, they’ll be left behind by suppliers, unprepared to help customers, and potentially could lose valuable market share. THIS IS AN OPPORTUNITY TO PUT YOUR COMPANY AT A COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE.
    You have some serious data here. You’ve uncovered some great quantitative data to present to management. Now, look for more.
  • Listen to lunchroom conversations. What people complain about may also be an issue.
    Ask your boss/manager what some of the bigger challenges are. Really dig for the tough challenges of the company.
    By now you should have enough information to create a solid argument for including Social Media as part of your marketing efforts.
  • Collect all the info and pull together a plan. Use the information from the previous steps.
  • Now you’re armed with the information you need to meet with management.
    But, don’t ask if you can start doing Social Media, and then show them the supporting data.
    Take a different approach. Instead of asking them, inform them.
    Inform them of the potential risk of not participating, and present your plan, to avoid the inevitable business communication challenge that’s barreling your way.
  • Transcript

    • 1. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam Bringing Management On Board with Social Media
    • 2. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam You May Meet with Resistance
    • 3. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam You May Even Hear…
    • 4. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam
    • 5. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam Moving from No to Yes No No No Yes Yes Yes
    • 6. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam 1. Establish Own Personal Presence You Blogging MicroBlogging Photos Video Social Networks Bookmarking Presentations Commenting
    • 7. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam 2. Add Analytics Now! You’ll need them later
    • 8. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam 3. Do Your Homework (External) What We’ll Look At: • Competitors • Customers and/or Suppliers • Your Industry • Social Media Industry Image courtesy of: clipartpal
    • 9. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam 3. Do Your Homework (External) How We’ll Look At It: Audits • Audit (Listening Stations) • Audit (Activity Summaries) Image courtesy of: clipartpal
    • 10. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam 4. Audit (Listening Station) Image courtesy of: ePublicist on flickr RSS Feed Readers: • Google Reader • Safarri • MicroSoft • Wikipedia RSS Comparison Subscribe or Create Your Own Feed
    • 11. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam 4a. Audit Competitors Image courtesy of: ePublicist on flickr Types of Feeds: • Competitor Blogs • Search Mentions (names, companies, products) • Twitter (@people, @company, #) • LinkedIn (person or company)* • Facebook (person or company)* • YouTube (company channel, person channel)
    • 12. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam 4b. Audit Customers/Suppliers Image courtesy of: ePublicist on flickr Types of Feeds: • Customer and/or Supplier Blogs • Search Mentions (names, companies, topics) • Twitter (@people, @company, #, geographic) • LinkedIn (person or company)* • Facebook (person or company)* • YouTube (person or company)
    • 13. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam 4c. Audit Your Specific Industry Image courtesy of: ePublicist on flickr Types of Feeds: • News (Trade Pubs) • Industry Blogs (Blog Search) • Search Mentions (Google Alerts) • Twitter (Topics, Phrases, #) • LinkedIn (Groups) • Facebook (Fan Pages [Like], groups) • YouTube (Channels, topics) • FourSquare (terms, names)
    • 14. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam 4d. Audit Social Media Industry Image courtesy of: ePublicist on flickr Types of Feeds: • News (HubSpot TV- iTunes) • Industry Blogs (Mashable, TechCrunch HubSpot, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube) • Research (Forrester, eMarketer, Marketing Sherp, readwriteweb, iMediaConnection) • Twitter (#pcnh, #pcb5, #SMBNH #wpmu @dvautier, @activeedgeteam) • LinkedIn (groups) • YouTube (Channels, topics)
    • 15. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam 5. Audit (Activity Summary) Who’s Doing What, Where, When, and How Often
    • 16. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam 5a. Competitors – Audit Activity No No No Yes Yes Yes
    • 17. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam 5b. Customers/Suppliers – Audit Activity No No No Yes Yes Yes
    • 18. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam 5c. Your Industry – Audit Activity Do the same No No No Yes Yes Yes 5d. Social Media Industry – Audit Activity N/A
    • 19. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam 6. Find Stakeholders & Build Support (Internal) • Who has authority to approve it? • Who can benefit most from it? • Who is already using it, how much? • Who embraces it or hates it? • Who would commit time/day
    • 20. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam 6a. Find Stakeholders & Build Support (Internal) No No No Yes Yes Yes
    • 21. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam 7. Look for Pain Points • What dept. is underperforming? • Is there a high product return rate? • Is tech support a rising expense? • Can the sales cycle be shortened? • Can “off season” sales be targeted? • Would a lead nurture program help? • How about lead retention program?
    • 22. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam 8. Build a Proposed Plan • Pick a pain point (or two) – define a goal for each ie. reduce tech support costs/calls by 1% in 6 months • Select an entry tactic ie. Facebook, Blog. Start small with one or two if resistance is high • Identify Key Metrics ie. Number of posts, velocity of growth, number of positive responses from followers/fans, fewer inbound support calls, etc. Keep it simple. • Create and identify the ‘Team’ ie. Dennise, Annie, Debbie • Layout a schedule post 3/day, blog 1/wk, etc. • Outline suggested content points ie. Industry trends, product FAQ’s, product performance milestones, success stories
    • 23. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam 9. Don’t Ask. Inform Include a Solution
    • 24. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam 10. Overcome Common Objections • Don’t Have Time – You’ve created a team • Don’t Know How to Use Platforms – You’ve made a list of local resources and outsourcing vendors • Don’t Know What Would be Interesting – You’ve created a loose content outline • It Can’t Be Measured. What’s the ROI? – You’ve made list of vendors who can measure it – You’ve identified moderate in-house means
    • 25. @dvautier @ActiveEdgeTeam Get the OK

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