'..Do we need a social media strategy? Does our Company need to be on Twitter? How useful is LinkedIn in achieving my networking goals...?
Stating that Social media has become a 'hype' is somewhat of an understatement. Over the past few years I must say that I have been amazed at the growth in interest, not just by people wanting to share their social life, but also by companies trying to find new marketing openings.
As with everything that people don't fully understand, social media also comes with a lot of assumptions about 'how to best achieve corporate value'. It also amazed me to notice how long it took before there even was a discussion raised about the ROI of social media activities. In fact, we just 'did it' hoping that we would get something in return, in the long run.
So isn't there any Value in social media? There is, and frankly that is my little secret. But I'll give you a little hint of why I am so successful in creating value for my customers.
As said, the focus on the tools such as Twitter, facebook and LinkedIn were non-interesting ego-aspects such as amounts of 'followers' and 'fans' rules, will not likely result in meaningful business. Instead try to focus on:
'..Give and thou shall receive..' seemed to be the gospel.
When we noticed that just 'doing it' didn't result in any meaningful growth in new business leads, we were quick to point out other, more softer values to target such as general brand exposure and probable positive brand sentiment fall-out. Or newly self-proclaimed social media experts convinced everyone that we were doing it wrongly and provided us with new models in which all the best-practice key-words such as 'listening, learning, interacting, participating, sharing, developing Advocates, targeting earned media etc. etc.' where brought together with beautiful arrows in charts, looking very plausible indeed. Naturally they pointed out the odd social media success-stories of Brands like 'Old-Spice, Nike and Obama', although these had no similarities with the sexy-ness of your Corporate Brand whatsoever.
Again, no-one seemed to really care for the hard numbers, no one really focused on the one and only central question we all should have asked:
How much Time and Effort does it really take in order to achieve what ROI?
Companies are now discovering for themselves that social media for generating business is quite something different than just having fun and sharing socially on a personal basis.
Finally, we do seem to realize that we can measure things like Content and Brand impact in social media, their added value in generating new business. Also the softer data can become 'hard' data e.g. by analyzing social sentiment about our corporate projects, products and we even found out what the Impact of our Advocates online where.
Yet we suddenly realized that we have incorporated a huge new workforce of social media enthusiasts with no real knowledge of your company processes and expertise and thus had no real sense of corporate value. it was just impossible for them to make the transition of their actions towards planning a business case in social media.
An eruption of anger and disappointment in social media expertise is therefore imminent, just because it is valid. I expect the current social media industry to erode away as soon as this Knowledge becomes mainstream. Only a few will be able to survive and they probably will abandon the words 'social media' completely and adopt 'corporate e-dynamics' instead.
The E-Time to ROI Model©
About the E-time to ROI Model©
There is quite a lot of information in the Model which you can use in order to get more insight how to achieve a situation in which your E-efforts are becoming E-ROI.
On the horizontal axis you will find the central explanation: The Ability to be more Personal in an E-interaction leads to a situation where you need less E-time per person to achieve your networking Goal. Specifically:
You will also notice a Blue dotted line. This line represents the effectiveness by using specialists web 2.0 tools such as the Deep & Clustered Web searching tools and address / phone number extractors which I make for corporate client use. These enable sourcing social networking sites for key-people using one query and they find corresponding phone numbers to them quickly. The total amount of time you will have to invest drops dramatically.
How to use the Model?
Ask yourself, where does your 'dotted' line meet with the uninterrupted lines? That will be exactly the point of critical E-ROI. Naturally I can help you getting more insight in your E-ROI situation, matching your corporate needs and how to maximize the E-ROI from web 2.0 interactions.
Finally some companies now seem to realize that enthusiasm in social media isn't enough to deliver qualified leads for new business and that they need the right e-targeting model in order to achieve measurable ROI. In that phase they usually request me to help them with an E-ROI or Corporate Dynamics program.