Friday, May 25, 2012

5 Steps to Creating Social Media Value

Let's face it. Everything is a business, and one needs to make himself effectively. Social media, which can loosely be defined as the web-based and mobile based technologies which are used to communicate between organizations, communities, and individuals, is the way to go in our now "digital age."

In a world where social media perpetuates through the veins of nearly every individual, celebrity, or business, how can an entity make himself stand out amongst the crowd of the World Wide Web?

The Financial Times has encompassed all the tools and strategies needed to create an effective social media presence on the Internet in five easy steps. Considering that over 70% of businesses worldwide already use social media in one way or another, these tips will be vital in leveraging social media for business.

1. Put IT in the lead. 
Though this tip only really works in a business aspect, it is still important to understand the role of understanding the needs that would like to be met by utilizing social media and how to acquire and make use of what technology is available to do s. 

"Social media strategies require IT to take a strong leadership role in the development and deployment of systems."

2. Create appropriate policies and training for employees
"It is difficult to overstate the importance of developing and formalising a social media policy. Clear, practical and concise policies supported by appropriate training allows employees to confidently engage in social media while reducing the risk of misuse. Specific training on social media use also tends to encourage employees to become advocates for their company. Indeed, KPMG’s survey shows that 57 per cent of employees with formal social media training said that they would be likely to make positive comments about their employer, versus just 36 per cent without training."

3. Enhance skills and capabilities. "
"Leveraging social media clearly requires businesses to enhance their capabilities and skills in a number of key areas such as business analytics, transparency and governance. It is not enough to simply move a clutch of customer service reps onto the social media channel without adjusting the business’ internal controls to ensure they have adequate authority to act and respond to customer complaints and comments in real-time. Similarly, customer analytics will need to develop skills in integrating social media data into their internal sources to achieve a clear and reliable view of the customer."

4. Invest in tools and services. 
"Taking advantage of social media sources will often require the business to invest in a range of new tools and services that enable the business to capture, sort and analyse the data they receive."

5. Encourage innovation. 
Utilizing social media in itself is something of innovation. Not only that, it drives much of the new ideas that come to exist and allow for easy collaboration.

"Some will be using social media to identify new product developments that fill unmet needs in the market. Others will be leveraging internal social media channels to encourage greater collaboration across disparate parts of the business. Regardless, business leaders must embed a culture of innovation into their social media strategies that encourages employees to take calculated risks and seek new approaches if they hope to achieve greater business outcomes from their social media programs."


  1. Interesting posting that emphasizes IT professionalization and updating tools rather than understanding rhetorical context, which -- of course -- is the focus of this course. How can you connect those recommendation to particular case studies in digital journalism?

  2. I've heard many of these tips from a small public relations convention I just recently went to. They emphasized #2. When dealing with the public, especially over the Internet, anything and everything can come your way. It is up to the company to have an appropriate and consistent manner in dealing with these interactions. We also discussed this in class during the comment section exercise. There should be set rules as to how certain comments are handled so it is consistent.