Social Media is still climbing the ranks in the marketing spectrum. In my line of work, you HAVE to know social media or you are completely “out-dated”… a marketer gone bad. When I read this article More Than Facebook: The Time Is Right For Social Business, ( by Alistair Rennie, IBM‘s general manager for social business) on Linkedin this morning, I was very pleased. He actually beat me to the punch as I have been wanting to address this same issue:
LET your people Tweet
LET your people Facebook
LET your people Network
So many business executives want to use social media, mainly because they think it is “free” advertising. Some want to implement social media because they “realize they have to” in order to keep up with their competition. Funny how most of these executives will “block” social networks, especially Facebook. I find this funny because, as this article points out, in order for you to have great success with social media, you have to let your employees get busy with it! How can they if you block them from powerful social medial sites!
“People by nature are social beings. We naturally form networks based on trust and similar interests. With social technology, executives are providing the necessary tools for their employees to easily tap into the creativity, intelligence and community that they crave. They’re now able to reach networks of people inside and outside the company to get work done more efficiently, more creatively, more collaboratively. But will they? Not without trust and encouragement from the top. Just as important as the tools, building trust and encouraging social interactions are essential to driving a social change in the workforce. Creating a social business culture can be the most difficult hurdle to overcome, but it’s also the most important.” -Alistair Rennie
Trust. Well stated, Alistair! Letting go of the “denied access” sites is going to have a thorough understanding of how intense and deep this social media thing is. If owners do not, then they may be participating in only a fraction of the possibilities. As a business owner, if social is not your “cup of tea”, then hire someone. Most importantly, when you hire them, LISTEN to them. Let them do their thing.
I realize that a lot of employees would take advantage of this….always on the sites. Hopefully, executives have ways to monitor and implement best social media practices. Establish guidelines and time frames. Turn your “block” off for an hour a day. Or limit the employees who need access.
Better yet, organize a social media group in your company. Allow them to meet weekly to discuss objectives and determine goals for the upcoming week with social media. This team could monitor other employee’s usage or work with them for a training period as you test the usage and results.
Make a social media plan. Get your people out there networking!
I love to think about "what makes people tick." People never cease to amaze me. My passion for trying to unlock the mysterious human mind is what drives me to excel in creative and strategic marketing.