We know by know Social Media/Business is something you can’t “just do”. Or, you can, but that’s missing the point and wasting time, effort and money.
In “The Seven Success Factors of Social Business Strategy“, the latest publication from the Altimeter Group, written by Charlene Li and Brian Solis, the alignment between business objectives and social strategy is put front and centre.
Now we can say, with authority, that Social has come of age. That we no longer can treat it as something we “just have to do”. Time to grow up.
It makes sense when you think about it. Anything a company does, any effort it makes should align with the company’s goals. Even charity or pro-bono work should, in one form or another, fit into “the greater plan”. It’s the only way to make sure that everything you do, as a business, is worth the effort.
Have a Coke
Coca-Cola has created a strategy to rival most out there. Basically it states that any expression should fit into the overall story being told by the company. Creating a fluidity where anybody can add or use content, as long as it abides to a few rules.
And the overall story is aligned with the company’s goals.
Coca-Cola is one of the most recognized brands in the world and a huge enterprise. Their resources seem infinite and implementing a plan like this seems easy enough. But, Coke is a world-wide brand with almost 150 thousand employees, and despite its resources, aligning anything is not an easy task.., at all.
The message is; If Coke can do it on such a huge scale.., surely we can do this in a smaller (and more controllable) environment.
This list is simply fantastic.
It’s one of those pieces of information that makes you go.., hmmmmm…. Silly really, because each point on that list is common sense for most major projects and changes. Yet, with social media we tend to ignore proper business altogether.
- Define the overall business goals
- Establish the long-term vision
- Ensure executive support
- Define the strategy roadmap
- Establish governance and guidelines
- Secure staff, resources, and funding
- Invest in technology platforms that evolve
You need to read the book for all the details of course, but coming from Altimeter you can rely on a proper foundation of the information.
As said, it makes sense. For instance, executive support (3) is paramount to success. Especially if you want to secure staff and resources (6). To invest in technology (7) you need funding (6). And in order to define the roadmap (4) you need to know the goals (1) and you have to establish the long-term vision (2).
See? It makes total sense…
Align your Efforts
The point of matter is that when (not if) you decide to start the social business journey you (really) should make the effort to do it right. I know, this is easier said than done. The Why? is pretty clear by now, it’s the How? we get stuck on. The “The Seven Success Factors of Social Business Strategy” can help you create the vision you need to support the necessary passion.
So, just do it, but do it right. There is enough information out there to support you, and more and more professionals to guide you. No more excuses.