I used this presentation in the Getting to grips with social media workshop earlier this week, and everyone seemed to appreciate it. It was created by Scott Douglas who works at the Holyrood Partnership in Edinburgh. Enjoy!
This is a question that many organisations are grappling with. And, after working with many organisations in various different ways my own answer to this question is that no, you can’t fully outsource social media.
The traditional agency/client relationship will not work when it comes to social media. I know this because I’ve tried it and found the arrangement to be impossible.
The first casualty of such an arrangement is authenticity. The individuals in social media communities have an expectation that they are conversing directly with an organisation, not with an agent.
The second casualty is immediacy. Even with the best of intentions, I’ve found it to be just about impossible to get client approvals quickly enough to meet the needs of social media.
However, I don’t think this means that organisation should not get some help from social media agencies and consultants. Most organisations don’t have the necessary knowledge base or skill sets to implement sophisticated social engagement strategies. Nor do they have the necessary bandwidth to manage communities and create compelling content.
So for me, it’s got to be the Third Way, a whole new approach to working together for agencies and clients. The consultant’s job is to teach, coach, train and inspire clients to embrace social technologies to tranform their organisations and reap all the related bottomline benefits.
Consultants are experts at developing strategy, creating content and supporting the day to day management of various profiles and platforms, and we’ll continue to provide these services. But once our ideas and concepts are implemented and momentum is gained, we need to hand back the reins to our clients or we risk undermining the whole mission.
This blog post was inspired by some of the discussion at the Getting to grips with social media workshop earlier this week. But it’s also informed by an excellent discussion taking place on the Conversation Agent blog.
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When 7% of respondents to a recent survey confessed that they’d ‘interrupt an intimate moment’ to check out their Twitter feed, you might start to think that social media is better than sex. Or, it’s ‘as good as’ at least. This survey finding is sure to be music to ears of social media marketers the world over.
The study was conducted by Ratrevo Gadetology, a consumer electronics shopping and review website, and it asked social media users questions such as when, where, and how much time they spend on sites and services like FaceBook and Twitter. Other key finding of the study include:
- Almost half of social media users (48%) will check Facebook and Twitter from their beds at night or as soon as they wake up. For 32% of social media users under 25 years of age the very first thing they do upon waking is check out their social network profiles.
- Almost a third of iPhone users (28%) check out Twitter and Facebook first thing in the morning and cite social networks are their primary morning news source.
- More than half of all social media users (56%) check FaceBook at least once a day. Twelve per cent check in every couple of hours.
- Forty per cent of survey respondents don”t mind being interrupted for a message. For almost a third (32%) check messages during mealtimes.
- Seven per cent of social media users will check out messages during ‘an intimate moment’.
*The data for this report came from a study of online individuals conducted by an independent panel. The sample size was just over 1,000 distributed across gender, age, income and location in the United States.
So is social media really better than sex? Hmmmm…I suspect it depends on the particpants involved and the level of effort. What do you think?
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- Social Media Addiction (tdhurst.com)
- Reading Entrepreneurs Question Value of Social Media @WSJ.com (fredzimny.wordpress.com)
The folks over at TheBestOf have asked me to run a social media workshop exclusively for their members. I’ve put together a special programme to meet the specific needs of their members who:
- Might have a Facebook profile, but don’t realise much benefit
- Don’t have the time to Tweet or update Facebook
- Think they can’t sell via Twitter
- Think blogging is only for kids on MySpace
- Don’t understand the rules of the road in social media
- Are starting to get curious about how social media can help their business
Participants will learn:
- Facebook’s primary features and functions
- How Twitter can improve your customer relationships
- About free tools and resources to gain social media traction
- How to become your industry’s recognised guru
- How to minimise effort and maximise results
- What mistakes to avoid
- How to gain media coverage
Participants will gain an understanding of:
- where social media fits with their company
- what social networks can (and can’t) achieve
- the risks and benefits of the social Internet
- the art of online conversation
The half-day workshop takes place on 10 May 2010 in the morning in Douglas, Isle of Man.
But you have to be a member of TheBestOf to attend. Contact Lynne or Christopher on 01624 618644, or Matt on 01624 481430 to find out more or to book your place.