I’m a big fan of the Top X list, but Chris’ wins. He came up with 100 things – yes 100! I had a hard time counting 100 $1 bills when I was a waiter, let alone think of a hundred things at any one sitting which wasn’t a random set of word combinations. Chris’ post is right on – there are too many things to post on. So he not only get’s on my blogroll after trolling his blog for months, but I will revisit his Top 100 list for at least another 99 times.
So what topic shall I leverage? #52. Telling My Boss About Social Media.
I had the opportunity to help bring the company I work for into the [tag]Web 2.0[/tag] fray and work the justification and value prop inside the business. I work for a technology company and we were SO Web -.5. Bad search, static content and no meaningful way to interact with our customers.
The good news is we had an new evangelist on the executive team to help pave the way and drive change. Smart people with cool ideas on the executive team is always upside. With a trailblazer already there and charging the way it went reasonably well – right up to the “So what’s the ROI?”. (dance… dance… dance…)
My answer was fairly smart ass-ed “this whole interweb thing could change our company and I mean like auto-magically!”. Nearly an exact quote, or not so near – I think there was a Sir or I understand or an equal “I hear you/I report to you” setup/suck up.
Not that I did the topic justice, but my general input/theme beyond my initial remark was “we CAN’T NOT do it – think dinosaur”. I love it when a double negative works, kinda like when Hannibal’s plans comes together!
Passion makes the english language more interesting and improves the outcome of most situations… back to the topic.
I further opined/proposed basically it’s a relevance factor, the ROI will develop overtime and on multiple dimensions, but patience is required. [tag]Social media[/tag] I explained is how business gets done – it drives search, thought leadership and community. All of which are hard to drive metrics against. I explained the first metric we can track is traffic, but the real metric will be in the [tag]Win/Loss analysis[/tag] which should show a growth in the increased blog references as a relevant factor for inclusion in a sales cycle.
To that end, where I rant, rave and typically require metrics – this is the one area where the metrics are not immediate and require active participation throughout the whole business to be effective. Social media is effectively table stakes in 2007, which until recently I was the only guy who was interested in anteing up, but wasn’t very effective previously on previous efforts.
So I’m in the midst of a cultural change in the company I’m in and I look forward to this Web 2.0 cultural revolution, but as will all revolutions it takes passion and action to be successful.
As a middle manager, this is the type of change you can help bring to your company as a leader/sponsor, contributor or supporter. Using social media can drive increased value for your shareholders and improved customer intimacy which will drive sustainable relationships for current and future customers.
Remember, the revolution will not be televised, but it will be searched on.