In a Social Leadership Forum, our CEO, Emma Lo Russo, asked a question of the panel of Australian social leaders. “How do you use social media to drive business growth and change?”
Here are 5 insights from their responses.
- Let disruption play its part. The innate nature of social media will cut across comfortable processes and habits. Rather than fight disruption, channel it – but gain the support and approval from senior management first. Plan for push-back, expecting varying levels of support, caution and obstruction. Be a social ninja, using the oncoming momentum of push-back to your advantage.
- Create a social showcase. Make a case to start a meaningful social program, one that you’re confident you can deliver. Measure pre-program social benchmarks, measure as you roll the program out, and measure on completion. Data trumps opinion. To close the project, formally brief management and stakeholders on how it changed things.
- Measure, measure, then measure again. We’ve just touched on this point, but again for emphasis: data beats opinions! Once you work with data, the world shifts. Social media is great at giving you the data you need to change the way you market, sell, and provide support.
- Change the way you frame your story. Social stops you talking at customers and supports meaningful engagement with customers. You move to join the conversations they are already having – about your brand, your products, and your services. Improve your alignment around brand messaging, build on understanding audiences by listening through social, and have a long-term view. Social lets organisations become customer-centric in a meaningful way.
- Deliver results. That way, you demonstrate the value of social. Your senior management will understand social, and your colleagues will too. Define what success will look like, then build on engagement, reach, sales, customer satisfaction, and brand share. Again, rely on data: know that you are succeeding, and understand why.
Read more: Social media delivers long term brand value
Social media works
Social media works. More importantly, social media helps you demonstrate – with evidence and data – that social media works.
By deploying these tactics, and ones like them, you can demonstrate the effectiveness of social media, demonstrate measurable value, and use social to grow your business. What’s more, you can do this as a large company, as a small or medium-sized business, even as a start-up. Social doesn’t favour size: it favours companies seeking insights.