Thursday, August 26, 2010

Commitment versus One and Done

It's been awhile but I'm back. I'd like to say it was a fun break but it wasn't. I've been away from my blog working through some family stuff since my dad passed away at the end of June. Priorities. Sometime they aren't fun but must be done.

Anyway, back to the fun stuff...

“The biggest benefit of open leadership is looking at business through the lens of relationships, rather than that of transactions.”
- Charlene Li, Open Leadership – How Social Technology Can Transform the Way You Lead

I had the pleasure of meeting with The Executive Board's Marketing Leadership Council in mid-June. They asked me to present on enterprise-wide social media initiatives focusing on providing CMOs with strategic direction on building out a social team be it cross functional, central or a hybrid. I started the presentation with Charlene Li's quote above because social media tools really amplify the focus on relationship (commitment) versus transactions (one and done).

The next few posts will be touch on the highlights of the presentation. First off:

Commitment Versus One and Done

CMO Commitment Shift:
1) Peers/your team buy-in, hire leader
2) Relationships
3) Conversations vs campaigns
4) Long haul sentiment change (YOY) vs buzz spike (quarterly)

I'll chuck these four out in to separate posts...let's chat about Peer/your team buy-in and hiring a social media leader.

As the organizational leader that has been tapped to lead social media, you need to be committed to weaving social media through your organization. As part of that commitment, you'll need someone to orchestrate the social media plan. You need to hire an online leader that understands your specific business goals, online marketing and social media nuances.

Set the stage internally for your social media leader's success. As with all change agent roles, you need your peers buy-in for the social media leader's role. For example, my organization's CIO told the VP of IT that my team is the business owner for social media. That directive, which came from our CMO before I started, set the tone for inclusion and organizational backing.

A few more topline commitments to consider before you hire a leader...
1) Are you comfortable moving away from a transactions model and shifting to a relationship model?
2) Social media isn’t just outward facing, you must be committed to educating your associates as they are some of your strongest enthusiasts.
3) Social media isn’t just about Marketing (transactions) or Public Relations (communications)it's about listening, serving, responding, resolving, and engaging.

The core message here is social media initiatives are continuous. As the executive leader of social media, you need to set the tone for an ever-evolving social media strategy intertwined with your organization's goals versus a one and done marketing or PR campaign. The first step in doing this is explaining the shift to your organization including the rationale for hiring a leader; then hiring your leader (that has experience rolling out enterprise-wide social media initiatives); and providing he or she with a foundation to succeed.


JustinG said...

Zena, glad you are feeling up to blogging again. You've started out with a bang -- what a topic; lot there! No. 2 (educating employees) is so important and so often overlooked. Had to get that in there.

A social media leader is a great idea. Ideally, that would be your CEO, IMO. But it can be the CMO too. The important thing is corporate culture usually goes from the top down so someone at the executive level needs to signify the culture shift and that social media is ok to use.

That person needs to also, as you said, initiate a cultural shift to focus in the relationship and the consumer. Executed correctly, that means we (PR, Marketing, CS, etc) have to work together in a true IMC model collaborating behind the scenes. With a short-term view, turf wars and silos are hard to avoid.


the 26.2 group said...

Hey Zena - we met in Charlotte at #sofresh - really enjoyed this post - love the quote from Charlene - its one of my favorite! Look forward to connecting you #HRBlock and my client -

Enjoy the rest of your Tuesday!