WebProNews recently spoke with C.C. Chapman, founder of Digital Dads, Co-author of Content Rules, and self-described Boston Media Maven. He says, "Social media has to be ingrained in you culture. All the tools in the world aren't going to save you."
"It doesn't matter what the platform is that it's being pushed out on. You want good content, and you push it out in as many places as you can, whether it's written or video," he adds. "Social media ain't new. It's been around for a long, long time. The concepts aren't new, the tools just get newer every day."
Businesses struggle every day to find good social media strategies. There's no one right way to do it. There are so many variables involved that it really has to come down to personal decisions on the part of management. Here are some tips to get you started.
When it comes to finding the right employees to put on your social media strategy, Chapman says, "So many companies are like, 'oh, he's a social media guy' or 'she's a social media girl', and at the end of the day, everybody in your company...doesn't need to necessarily understand these tools and be responsible for it, but every time somebody goes out from your company, they're probably socializing, whether it's having a beer or hanging out on Facebook and Twitter, you want them to understand these tools…to understand that everything they say can be shared and whatnot. And you know, teach them these tools, so they can figure out and get it in your culture so you're not scared of this stuff."
"PR and marketing should not be separate departments anymore (I know the purists will yell about it)," he says. "Get 'em together, and...depending on the company, get legal involved...I mean, it depends on what you are..."
"There's definitely training companies...there's nothing wrong with having blogging guidelines or social media guidelines," Chapman adds. "There's nothing wrong with that, but don't try to clamp it down. You know, if Bob's angry, he's going to go out there and start yelling about it, and you need to take care of it, but guess what: if you don't have a listening strategy, and if it's not part of your culture, you're never gonna hear it either, so that's the other side of the equation."
You never know, you might be able to solve some internal problems by listening.
As far as finding a starting point, "Start playing," Chapman suggests. "Start small. I always tell people (I work with a lot of executives), I say, play on your own. You know, set up your own Facebook account for you, just so you can figure out the tools, and maybe you'll start going, 'Oh, I see how this could benefit, and how this could be used", because otherwise...until you start playing with it, you're never gonna understand it."