Sep 20, 2012

How do you manage social media at your company?

We have very little social media presence up to this point, a rarely updated Facebook page, and a moderated comment section on our website. I'm not saying that's ideal, but on the other hand it's pretty easy to manage. There was a recent decision to expand our social media presence pretty dramatically, but my concern is that it looks like, because it involves computers, the general opinion is somebody that's an IT guy should deal with it. We aren't a huge company, and I can understand that management wants to just check the box on the to do list, but I think this should be done by marketing, or perhaps even HR. In a smaller company, we wear multiple hats, but frankly IT isn't filled with people who are familiar with the day to day business functions of the company. We "just" make stuff work. How do you manage social media in your organization?

You should consider hiring a social media manager that knows how to navigate that world properly. See this link for a helpful job description that you can adapt to your company's needs:


"The Social Media Manager will implement the Company’s Social Media Strategy, developing brand awareness, generating inbound traffic and encouraging product adoption. This role coordinates with the internal Marketing and PR teams to support their respective missions, ensuring consistency in voice and cultivating a social media referral network."

I am speaking from personal experience when I say that social media can work against you unless you have someone in charge who (1) is familiar with corporate objectives, (2) has effective communication/marketing skills, (3) understands what their goals are, just as Christopher said earlier, and (4) has the ability to interact with individuals at different levels of the company.  This is a person who is responsible for a significant portion of the public face of the company, and yet I see companies go in halfed-a'ed all the time.  It really doesn't surprise me that a company would just throw it towards IT as a catch all.  Keep in mind, most members of upper management did not grow up in an age of Facebook/Twitter/etc., and some still haven't embraced it.  Or even worse, have embraced it Donald Trump style.  It could be that you are dealing with otherwise bright people they really don't understand what they are talking about when it comes to social media.  I think that you must convince them to take social media seriously, and not just as some low level task that needs to be assigned.    



Rousseau, your wisdom and insights are as valid today as they were in the 18th century. :)




Honestly, this sounds like a disaster in the making. An enterprise can't dramatically expand its social media presence without a specific, coherent plan (with defined goals) and a competent social media manager. I get the impression your executive management just sort of hopes someone figures it all out. If they wouldn't do that with other aspects of their business strategy, they shouldn't do it with social media. You're correct that someone from marketing probably would be a better fit, assuming the company won't hire someone for the job. (Plus the notion that an IT guy should do it because social media has to do with computers is mind-boggling.)

Here are a couple of links to information about social media strategies. Hope some of it helps.


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