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The role of social media in corporate social responsibility


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The role of social media in corporate social responsibility

  1. 1. The Role of Social Media in Corporate Social Responsibility 2011 The Role of Social Media inCorporate Social ResponsibilityPresentation Script by Andrew Chow ( Page 1
  2. 2. The Role of Social Media in Corporate Social Responsibility 2011The Role of Social Media in Corporate Social Responsibility 1. Fundamentals of Social Media - Target Audience. Your target audience may not necessarily be your customers though it may lead to some conversion. They may be the people who influence your customers of their buying decision. These stake holders may be the family members of your customers, which will lead to group buying. Whoever they are, understand where you can find them on social media, how do they network and share their opinion. - Authenticity. It’s time to be personable as a company and open yourselves up to transparency. Be seen in the same places as your customers would. Study where the crowd and signals are. Explore and experiment new platforms not only to reach out to Gen Y but Baby boomers who are beginning to go onto the social media. Form a team or task force within your company to pick each other’s brains on the best engagement practices. Develop your own standard operating procedure and usage guidelines so that entire company is aligned. - Honesty. No one is perfect, and not everyone will like what we do. You amy get as many negative comments as good or neutral comments. Turning a negative comment into a persuasive pitch is the real art of communication on social media. You’ll get a good chance to explain yourself further with every misguided remark. Customers or key stake holders may not be looking for an answer but feel satisfied as long as there is a channel of feedback. - Your Story. Tell your own story. Do not duplicate what others have already started doing. Look around you and embrace what your organisation is most concern about. o Marketplace  The impact on society of your core products and services  Ethical trading  Ethical advertising  Treatment of, and vetting of, suppliers o Environment  Contribution to greenhouse gas emissions through energy use and other parts of your processPresentation Script by Andrew Chow ( Page 2
  3. 3. The Role of Social Media in Corporate Social Responsibility 2011 Use of raw materials, both nonrenewable resouces which by definition are not sustainable in the long term, and as importantly renewable resources which are produced in a fashion which is not currently sustainable.  Potential for environmental accidents - releases of pollutants into air, water or land. o Workplace  Work-life balance of your employees  Managing diversity in the workforce  Training, development and life-long learning  Eradicating abusive or bullying behaviour o Community  Social problems  Increasing income gap - Share, Not Sell. It is a myth to say that by sharing all your knowledge on social media, you are giving your expertise away for free. You share knowledge and insights, you sell your solutions offline. Understand that every business is eventually a service business. There must always be a value added. It can comes in a form of thought leadership, market update, situational analysis. Just build your follower and fan page proactively. Start early even if you do not exactly know where you are going. Your network will be much needed when you need them especially in a crisis situation.Presentation Script by Andrew Chow ( Page 3
  4. 4. The Role of Social Media in Corporate Social Responsibility 2011 2. How can companies leverage on Social Media for CSR? - Commit and Lead. Social Media is like teenagers trying to understand love, everyone wants to try, but not many know it requires commitment. Decide on your key message and roll out a posting schedule, assign the right people with the right emotional quotient to manage the social media platforms in your company. Such staffs are always the internal brand ambassadors for your corporate social responsibility journey. Devote resources and re-write job description to lead the company into the social media culture in order to communicate your CSR mission effectively on social spaces. - Share and Listen. Sharing isn’t a culture in Asia, we like to sell rather than share. We must learn to share our knowledge and sell only our expertise. Listening is an active engagement exercise. It means knowing what is the language and lingo used by the people we serve. What are they talking about us? What do they know and how much do they really understand? Is someone speaking on our behalf? Do we have brand ambassadors out there who constantly creating awareness which we are not aware of? Ultimately, listen to the real and current social issues to be addressed and re-align your strategy if you have to - Innovate. Most companies are already being creative in their CSR, now it’s time to be innovative. It’s isn’t enough to give time off for staff to be volunteerism, create a friendly competition among your staff and make the results known in your intranet. - Communicate. In this modern day and age, it is not a matter of how good you are doing what you are doing, but rather how many people out there know you are good at what you are doing. Make it a culture to encourage your staff and key volunteers to share about their experience through twitter, blog and even facebook. Use platform like Foursquare to check in and promote the venue where you are performing your CSR. Get more words out there, do mini quizzes on special platforms like to test how much your target audience understand what you do and how you are doing it. - Invest. It’s great to spend time and resources on social issues you are passionate about. It’s even greater if you set up a fund and motivate other stake holders to do the same. Get the public involved byPresentation Script by Andrew Chow ( Page 4
  5. 5. The Role of Social Media in Corporate Social Responsibility 2011 encouraging pooling of funds to serve a certain cause. Get social through your investment and you will reap mindshare and brand recognition.Presentation Script by Andrew Chow ( Page 5
  6. 6. The Role of Social Media in Corporate Social Responsibility 2011 3. Ten Reasons why companies are not embracing social media? S - Strategy. Companies do not have a clear game plan, not sure of their target audience and objectives of being on social media. It is a decision which requires the top management buy-in. The road map must be set with the appropriate response strategy and risk assessment. O - Organisation. Organising themselves internally and integrate other marketing, communications and publicity efforts require more than a change of standard operating procedure, it requires a change of mindset and culture. Staff will require social media training to be on the same page when task forces are formed. C - Channels. Most corporate are clueless as to which platforms are suitable for their business especially when it is a B2B scenario. Knowing how to prioritize their resources and effort on the most suitable platforms requirement some experiment. If you need to reach out to the masses, Facebook is ideal. If you are reaching out to the marketplace, Linkedin will be your choice. If you are engaging thought leaders, Quora is a great place. I - Investment. Lets face it. Social Media platforms may be free but not consultation, content preparation, measurement, etc. Staff job description which leads to new hire must be allocated in the budget. Along with investment will come commitment to meaningful engagement with stakeholders in the social media. A - Authenticity. Many corporate are too used to using "We", "us" instead of "I". People like to connect with people not organisation. Being personable is the key to building relationship on social media. No one will like to connect with a company on social media. Individuals within the organisation will have to be identified and learn to speak on behalf of the company. This may not be entirely the job of corporate communication department in future. L - Listening. Most corporate do not really listen to their customers in the first place. Listening when corporate first embark on social media is more important than contribution. When you have active listening, you will get a feel of brand sentiment in the social circles. Listening also means gaining competitive insights besides customer engagement.Presentation Script by Andrew Chow ( Page 6
  7. 7. The Role of Social Media in Corporate Social Responsibility 2011 M - Moderation. On social media, there is really no moderator. Unless you create a social networking within your web 2.0 environment, you will need to accept the good with the bad. The art of managing negative comments will decide if you can enlarge the social mind share. Do not delete or censor negative comments or feedback. Learn to respond accordingly to show professionalism as well as personal touch. E - Engagement. Engagement is a BIG word. Everyone talks about it but few understand the commitment behind active engagement. Corporate will need to listen, be proactive, contribute meaningfully, create environment for more user-generated content. All these require corporate to be among the social circle. Learn to listen twice as much as we contribute. D - Direction. As a corporate entity, many other functions will need to be re-aligned if social media strategy is deployed. Human Resources will need to create usage policy, Customer Service will need to use social media to engage customers very promptly. Sales teams will have to understand the CSR directions when they do a pitch. Marketing may use CSR as a unique preposition in their approach. There must be a good direction from top down in communicating your brand through CSR via social media. I - Infrastructure - Monitoring benchmark and systems must be set to measure Key Performance Index. Best practices for sales, marketing, branding and other department must be continuously built upon in the Knowledge Base. It can be technical growth like number of fans or followers over a period of one year. It can be soft approach like sensing the sentiment on the ground based on number of positive, neutral and negative comments. A - Analytics - Do corporate know what are they measuring? How do you utilise certain data to improve on product and service? How does trend and research affect decision making and resource allocation? Google analytics is a great tool for free evaluation of web KPIs after social media is implemented and integrated within the corporate web 2.0 technologies.Presentation Script by Andrew Chow ( Page 7
  8. 8. The Role of Social Media in Corporate Social Responsibility 2011 4. Conclusion. a. Social Media will not be a fad, it will be as important in business like Corporate Social Responsibility to your company b. You need great content – your CSR story c. You need great context – Speak and create conversation of relevance and linkage between what you do and what you are passionate about. d. Your need great community – You need social brand ambassadors to be raised to spread the message and become influencers in society. Your message needs more than just your own voice to gain a mindshare. e. CSR and Social Media Corporate Strategy are made for each other. Just as Charity has benefitted a lot from the awareness through social media, CSR will be communicated alongside with your brand communication to create the desired market perception about your company. f. Social Media is a new way of corporate life, a new world of communication which is live and spontaneous. It requires commitment just like Corporate Social Responsibility. g. Utilising social media for CSR is marrying 2 social segments together to enhance branding and public perception of your company.Presentation Script by Andrew Chow ( Page 8