Sunday, January 9, 2011

Social Media Plan

What are your social media objectives and how will you measure return on investment? What resources (time, money) are you expending to your social media? If your company is involved in social media or if you are considering it – develop a plan!

Yes, sometimes the best way to get started is to simply get started. That’s okay. You have to walk before you can run – right? Yet, at some point you need to know where you are going and why. To determine your organization’s direction, it might be beneficial to collaborate with your advertising agency, media specialist, PR firm or customer relations department. Decide how social media fits within your overall communications plan. What financial and personnel resources should you assign for this communication and relationship building opportunity? How will you allocate advertising budgets between traditional advertising, new media and social media management?

Once you have a plan (a blueprint for everyone to follow), you will have a clear perspective and be in the best position to make decisions, delegate tasks and measure the results. Management and execution can be delegated, but one person should be ultimately responsible for plan approval, overseeing execution and monitoring results.

With regard to delegating: Pushing content (PR, brand and promotional messages) can be assigned to a responsible person to follow the approved plan. However, be sure to find the right person capable of managing the “networking” component of social media. Networking takes time and effort (there is a reason “work” is part of the word networking), but more importantly, you need someone who can respond intelligently and brand-appropriately to posted questions or comments.

Online networking efforts, in my opinion, could provide the best results of all the social media components. However, it could also provide a profound negative response if not handled appropriately. You hire babysitters and get grandma’s help with the children, but you are still the parent – right?

Want to learn more? Check these out.

Social Media in Plain English

Developing a Social Media Plan

Creating your Social Media Plan

I am interested in hearing your questions or comments.

Debra Stauffacher