New Org for Social Network

Curtis Franklin Jr., Executive Editor | 2/1/2013 | 71 comments

Curtis Franklin Jr.
One of the joys (and dangers) of my job is that I get to search the Internet for interesting story sources. A recent infographic on business and social media caught my eye in a serious way.

The web designers at Go-Gulf.com put together a pretty nifty infographic based on research by Lawrence Ragan Communications. The topic? How companies organize their social media teams. For a topic that didn't exist half a dozen years ago, this has become something that is critical for IT departments, marketing departments, and the hybrid "digital departments" that organizations are creating because none of the traditional labels seem to fit. The results show that how companies deal with social media is still very much a work in progress.

The first thing that leaps out is the finding that only about a quarter of organizations have a team dedicated to social media work. That has a couple of implications. One is that a very important method for communicating with customers (and potential customers) is being added to existing workloads in the company. The other is that this important task is being taken on by people with varying levels of expertise -- and practically no primary responsibility for social media's success in the organization.

Next up are two results that aren't particularly encouraging. First up is that more than half the organizations polled say that they're just keeping their heads above water when it comes to social networking -- only 13 percent describe their current efforts as "advanced." That's followed by the statement that more than three-fourths of the organizations have absolutely no plans to hire new people to deal with social media. That leaves relatively few avenues available for improving social media performance for your business.

What all this means is that the IT department is going to have something between total and a little bit of responsibility for making social media work better for the organization. If your company is like most, it's safest to bet on the finger pointing in your direction if goals aren't being met. How, then, to make sure you're contributing to success rather than a blame-fest?

In IT, we tend to think first of technology solutions to problems. There are, in fact, technology tools that can help, and many of them are built around big-data and the skills that can enable serious data analysis. For most organizations, though, the biggest wins are going to come through training and strategy, areas in which IT often plays second-fiddle to marketing. There are a lot of historical reasons for that to be the case, but if anything is proving true about social networking it's that historical roles and rules are seldom sufficient for new-network success.

How is your company dealing with social networks? How do you think they should be dealing with social networks. Let us know -- and let us know how you plan to deal with your new marketing department partnerships to help your organization succeed. Perhaps the information in this infographic will help -- it should certainly be good for serious discussion with your peers!

How Organizations Structure Social Media Teams

Infographic by GO-Gulf.com

View Comments: Newest First | Oldest First | Threaded View
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KeithGrinsted   New Org for Social Network   5/26/2013 5:34:25 PM
Re: Digital Departments...Digital Graduates
@curtis it is all about the engagement. You cannot expect to simply expect to use social media as another advertising platform. It is instead a means by which we can engage with customers and prospective customers. Content is king and we have to justify the right to continue. It is not something to be dabbled with!
geeky   New Org for Social Network   2/22/2013 11:51:28 PM
Re: social networks needs new professional
Thats some good news soozyg. We do need experts to take control over social media transactions rather than just freaks who spend their time in social media for nothing.
CurtisFranklin   New Org for Social Network   2/22/2013 8:49:11 AM
Re: Digital Departments...Digital Graduates
@Syerita, I won't claim to be a social media expert, but I'm quite sure that any strategy revolving around simply using social networks as a new advertising medium won't be truly successful. The key is to somehow create a sense of community among your customers and social followers. If that happens, truly amazing results can result.
CurtisFranklin   New Org for Social Network   2/22/2013 8:42:12 AM
Re: Outsourcing
@Taimoor, I agree that much of the "foot soldier" work can be outsourced but this seems like a skill set (at least, at the strategy and management level) that most companies would want to develop in house. My suspicion is that a lot of firms think of this as a fad, and they don't want to staff up then dump people when the fad runs its course. I think they're wrong, but only time can convince them of that.
The_Phil   New Org for Social Network   2/21/2013 11:52:35 AM
Re: Digital Departments...Digital Graduates
Keep shoving value-adds in front of them. Make them want more & more of what your company has to offer.
Taimoor Zubair   New Org for Social Network   2/21/2013 9:56:19 AM
Outsourcing
I think social networking jobs can be effectively outsourced. Many cosmetics company are thriving with this approach. I have friends who promote the cosmetics on social media and get paid reasonably. They're are also very enthusiastic about getting paid for something they absolutely love.
Syerita Turner   New Org for Social Network   2/21/2013 8:24:11 AM
Re: Digital Departments...Digital Graduates
My company is using social networking to reach their clients but to what extent they are doing this I am clueless. They do have a good social prescence but is that enough. Is there more that we have to do to stay relevant? I think that is what we need to ask. Is there some way to stay at the forefront of the minds of the consumer? With everything being so digital and online it is hard to stay above the mark when it comes to strategies. That is why they hire the big wigs to figure this out. I just stay in my lane.
The_Phil   New Org for Social Network   2/18/2013 11:12:36 PM
Re: Digital Departments...Digital Graduates
Good point. Interesting bit to chew on though...
singlemud   New Org for Social Network   2/18/2013 9:38:54 PM
Re: social networks needs new professional
Agree, social media marketing is a marketing strategy. May need to be well understood its power and usage.
soozyg   New Org for Social Network   2/18/2013 7:01:01 PM
Re: social networks needs new professional
@geeky,

Yes, I believe it will. I am one of those social media specialists and know many successful colleagues. The social media consultant who knows what he/she is doing doesn't just simply post blurbs. We work very closely with the client/company to streamline the brand, streamline the marketing message, and work with the customers to retain loyalty.
Page 1 / 8   >   >>


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