- Getting the 'message' right.
- Distributing/broadcasting that message
Since media has become democratic and mainstream in recent years, with everyone from our kids to our grandparents participating in content creation and sharing, businesses now need to become social as well, leaving behind the old 1-way talk at you regime and embracing a new 2-way talk with you practice and posture.
The message is still important, as is being heard. But the message can't be protected, unchallenged, and "owned" anymore. It needs to live in the minds and daily dialogue of the people in the organization as they are put out in front of the company to share the message and grow the business.
Corporate communication has become human. Transparency, honesty, and active interest in what the customer wants now characterizes how businesses engage and grow.
Or it should.
Most businesses are having a difficult time adapting to this significant and very quick shift. The majority of businesses view "social media" as a new broadcast channel under the old model are failing as a result. Craft the message, post it to social platforms, and no one seems to listen, do they?
People connect with people, not companies. For businesses to be social, their people need to be social. The message is still important but it's the interactions that an organization's people have with other people that is now shaping the brand more than any other factor. Through armies of support, resources, and value delivered live and in person. We're going back to the way business was done in a local setting in our grandparent's day - but now on a grand, global scale of instant and organic sharing.
The ones who are succeeding are the ones who are examining every corner of their operations for new opportunities to learn from their customers, grow for their customers, and become focused on their best reasons for being in business.
Social is Not Just a Marketing/PR Opportunity
Social presents new opportunities for every silo/role within a company.
- Business Development - what are your target customers saying they need that you can provide? How do the needs your customer communicates to you find their way into the next iteration of your product/service?
- Support - How powerful would your customer's experience be if you could hear them voice a problem with your product and have you reach out to help them before they even contact you?
- Human Resources - Get to know people before you hire them. Find talented team members who have a social profile that can be an asset to your company. Reduce the 'procedures' of hiring by relying on the people in your network who are also in the networks of those you are planning to hire.
- Billing - It's not about your processes, it's about a relationship and making sure both sides get what they need with as little pain as possible. What's the best model for your customer's to pay for what you're selling and the best method that works with how they work? Give them choice, they'll let you know.
- Marketing - Talk directly with the people who want to buy what you have to sell and enlist their help in sharing your offering with others looking for the same thing. It's the ultimate word of mouth and it undermines the exclusivity of the broadcast mediums of the old regime.
- Public Relations - Control your own message and stop earning the interest and approval of the traditional media to get your story out. Talk like a person with other people and grow with your audience.
Social is not a product to be bought
You can't flip on the social switch to be a social company any more than you can flip a switch to become a teen heartthrob or an expert in a chosen field. Take a deep breath. Take your time to participate in conversations on social platforms and figure out the best way to involve your business. There's no rush.
And we're here to help if you need us.
Now and as we grow, the Sociallogical team is made up of thoughtful, curious people who understand social business and have enjoyed success in growing communities using social media tools.
We have seen the operations and business models of countless businesses from the inside as team members, mentors, and builders. We have insight to help you make decisions and plan strategies to best take advantage of the your new opportunities in this new world of social business.
We're all in this together. It's a share thing.