What this article covers: social media training includes a variety of business impacts outside of the marketing and sales channel.
To help understand part of this issue; think about the multiple channels of communication that social media affects and how those components relate to your traditional business process.
In many cases this is best understood by visualizing how tipping a domino causes a series of effects to happen: when we think about the tipping point, every domino represents a process point that either succeeds in falling under our control (hitting the domino we were aiming for) or falls outside of our control (hitting dominoes that we didn’t want to affect.)
- In an ideal business process everything is under our control.
- In the social media process we need to plan that almost everything is outside of our control.
How do we implement social media training?
We first need to think about the original reason we wanted “social media training” to occur: it probably had something to do with ROI, cost savings, of increased efficiency.
When we consider some of the basic elements of why social media training was originated, we also need to consider multiple silos of our business that we may not have direct influence over.
This could include marketing, legal, client care, executive comm, stakeholder compliance, sales, product development and more.
When creating a strategic plan to affect how certain social media dominoes will be pushed over, we need to work as a team and communicate that change is happening (which may affect other departmental dominoes.)
As we look at these departments in our social media training concepts, we also need to brainstorm other critical issues involving our business.
Business Goals to Consider:
- Process timing & cost reduction
- Prospect conversion rates
- Upsell & Client growth
- New Client Acquisition
- Intellectual Property Management
- Executive Training
- Compliance Reporting
- Risk Management
- Crisis Communication
- Human Resource Management
- Talent Acquisition
- Strategic Business Planning
- Competitive Intelligence
- Market Share Growth
What communication channels does this affect?
Many Chief Technical Officers and IT Directors are struggling with the concept that a majority of the workforce has 24/7 access to personal internet connections using mobile phones. This simple technical shift has caused the concept of a “corporate firewall” to be aggressively compromised as dozens of new technologies are integrated into existing business infrastructures. The graphic below helps detail the sudden shift in adoption in the past few years.
Public Relations and Marketing Officers are troubled by budget concerns and an inability to relay human resource benefits or legal risk issues to executive management. This creates turmoil when communication officers are dutied with generating sales and positive growth, yet lack the skills to integrate hiring new employees or detail how it avoided legal penalties (when was the last time your Marketing spreadsheet had a column for employee retention?)
This is often seen by examining the tools and technologies that have gained social adoption within the employee or client base.
EXAMPLE: when a company finds out that 20% of its employees are logging into Facebook every day through the use of a mobile phone and 90% of employees with a smartphone are checking company e-mails away from work, intensive restructuring and planning become paramount.
Sample Technology & Communication channels
- mobile phones
- tablet PCs
- word of mouth
- social sites
- public forums (market collaboration)
- private forums (internal collaboration)
- International / Language based channels
- Regulatory / Compliance based channels
What can we measure and affect?
Before running off and doing anything, I suggest setting social social media benchmarks. Until you have an idea of where you are, trying to figure out how to get where you should be is nearly impossible.
Below is my ‘not so small’ list of social media training: if we take a dozen different departments and multiply them by a handful of corporate business goals, we end up with hundreds of overlapping conditions.
These conditions are then multiplied by hundreds of data points that can include a variety of social media metrics. Any of these social media data points may be deemed mission critical OR absolutely worthless based upon the departmental business goals and the corporate business goals they are applied to.
Before reading this list, put yourself in the role of a departmental director and then do it again from the viewpoint of another departmental head. You should be able to quickly see how some elements become mission critical while other elements are completely ignored based on your role within the company.
Here are a list of social media training metrics to consider:
Social Media Targets
- Press / Journalists
- Investor / Shareholders
- Employees / HR
- Candidates / Recruiting
- Individual Consumer
- B2B/Enterprise Sales
- Groups / Associations
- Industry Leaders
- Business Partners
Market / Competitive Intelligence
- Keyword market
- Press channels
- Product Launches
- Product Insight
- Competitive Mapping
- Traditional Media
- Network TV
- Cable TV
- Trade Publications
- Industry Blogs
- Scholarly Blogs
- Bookmarking Sites (Digg/Delicious/StumbleUpon)
- Traditional Media Sites
- Online Niche Publications
- Brand Names
- Product Names
- Product Launches
- Promotions / Events
- Number of Mentions
- Number of Comments
- Youtube/Flickr Views
- Account Followers
- Account Advocates
- Account Critics
- Google Rank (SERPS / Keyword Traffic)
- Authority Ranking
Conversational Member Metrics
(varying word comparison)
(positive, neutral, balanced, negative)
(novice, critic, competitive, scholar)
- Personality (
- Authority / Reach / Wave impact
- Location of Followers / Members / Audience
- Target Properties
(main, micro, social, conversion)
- Unique Visitors
- Repeat Visitors
- Length of Time o site
- Conversion – lead process
(mailing list, registration)
- Conversion – purchase/acquisition
- Page Views
- Time on Site
- Search Behavior
- Material Demand
- Conversion to Interest (awareness)
- Conversion to Research (education)
- Conversion to Purchase (sales)
- Increase to Loyalty (lifetime value)
- Increase to Advocacy (brand/reputation)
- Increase to Support (customer care)
- YouTube (video)
- YouTube (video)
- Pension / Retirees
- Laid-off / Terminated
- New Hires / Top Talent
- Intellectual Property
- Compliance Issues
- State / Federal Regulation
That is A LOT of stuff to consider!
Yes it is!
The fortunate part is that this is not a “we have to do everything” scenario. Decision makers just need to consider the most worthwhile impacts to the organization and maximize ares of return (or minimize areas of risk.)
If you are implementing a social media training at your company, what are some of the 1st steps you took to begin your educational journey?