Social media offers both great opportunities, and also challenges, to businesses. For those that embrace social media – by adopting the right strategy – risks can be averted and rewards unlocked. Using a simple framework to create an effective strategy for social media can enable your company to enjoy its benefits.
Companies can no longer control their communications with their customers. Social media tools have enabled information to be generated from within the marketplace by consumers themselves. This shift of power presents significant challenges for companies that fail to come to terms with it. But for those that do embrace social media, the rewards can be great. Different methods of collaboration and innovation are becoming ever more prevalent and companies are increasingly realizing the commercial gains that can be achieved through these new business models.
A comprehensive six-stage framework will enable businesses to plan, run and improve their use of social media as part of their marketing strategy. This simple, but effective, framework covers most situations and can be deployed in most companies, whether operating in the business-to-consumer (B2C) or business-to-business (B2B) space. The six stages are:
For most companies, embarking on a social media strategy can enable them to create a customer-centred environment, using technology to accelerate real-time interactions. But the successful implementation of a social media strategy will depend on you, as a business leader:
Developing a Social Media Strategy, Clark. M, Bryan. A, Shapiro. M, The Henley Centre for Customer Management. The full paper can be obtained via The Henley Centre for Customer Management.
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