I speak to large and small companies on a daily basis and everyone seems to say the same thing: “We have to get in on social media marketing.” Some companies are taking the lead to do it themselves. They are establishing “social media” or “new media” or “digital media” departments that will head up the company’s social media initiatives. They are asking about tools that will monitor the social space and easy ways to distribute content. And of course, everyone wants to know about tracking and reporting. Some are going through a very rigorous exercise of shutting down renegade bloggers and using taskforces to establish guidelines and standards prior to foraying into the social space. And yes, there are still a small few who haven’t quite drunk the Kool-Aid®. For this article, I want to focus on the enthusiasts – companies that are eagerly entering the social media space.
To give you a sense of how many are doing just that, Facebook fan pages are being added at the rate of 24,000 per day. It’s clearly reached a critical mass, and most companies at this point are eager and enthusiastic to get going. Last year, companies exhibited a lack of urgency and interest in social media – this year, they are trying to more than make up for “lost time” and in some cases are forgetting their common marketing sense. For all the companies that are getting themselves “some of that social media,” I ask you to please take a deep breath and consider a few things before you drive yourselves – and your companies – down a wrong path.
First, do not establish a new silo in your company. If social media is leveraged correctly, it can influence and impact multiple organizational functions – not just marketing (advertising, direct, promotion and PR) but sales, operations, HR, customer service, product development and research. Social media should not be sanctioned to one department in a company.
Read the rest here.