Social Media: Under Construction

On Wednesday, July 9, Terry Morawski and I collaborated on a social media presentation for the Greater Fort Worth chapter of PRSA:

Additional presentation options: .pdf, .ppt, slideshare

A lesson in Social Media

Common Craft: LinkedIn made simple

For any of our members who might by wondering how LinkedIn can possibly be helpful, this is a great video from the folks at Common Craft. It is especially relevant for small business owners or service providers to show the usefulness of a network:

 

Thoughts on blogging

from the July issue of the eChaser…PRESIDENT’S COLUMN

Laura Van Hoosier, APR, Greater Fort Worth PRSA
 
As the oldest child, I’ve always had a mind of my own. My mother says that by 2 years old I was giving her direction on our next steps. Now I’ve been inspired by my fellow GFW PRSA members to start a blog, and it’s perfectly in line with an independent spirit.
 
For me, it’s really just a “live, work, play” online journal (nothing as interesting as my high school diary that my mom read) — a wonderful forum to post web sites, updates about my daughters, family happenings and anything that’s in my world. I sent the link to a few close family members, and my aunt in Hawaii wrote back, “BLOG! BLOG! BLOG! We enjoy keeping up with you this way.”
 
Blogger.com was the easiest way to get started, and once I started, I couldn’t stop. Each morning I wake up thinking, “What will I post today?” But it won’t matter one iota if I’m the only one who ever reads it. Already I have enjoyed looking back to reference articles, facts, funny things the girls did, photos, etc.
 
Lisa Gail Barnes, Richie Escovedo, Linda Jacobson, Sarah McClellan-Brandt, Terry Morawski and I are blogging away at fortworthprsa.blogspot.com. To join us, e-mail your blog’s link to the chapter webmaster, richie.escovedo[@]gmail.com, and he’ll post it.
 
You’ll hear how Richie and others have forayed into new media at the July 9 meeting. It ‘ll be a hands-on program, so bring your laptop, and the presenters will walk you through useful tools and tactics you can implement right away for your organization.
 
Here’s to our country’s independence. Yours and mine, too.

POST starts with "P"

This post first appeared on the nextcommunication blog on June 16, 2008.

I am reading Groundswell by Forrester Research’s Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff. This book is easily one of the most intriguing professional books I’ve read in a while. According to Li and Bernoff the groundswell is:

A social trend in which people use technologies to get the things they need from each other, rather than from traditional institutions like corporations.

While I don’t particularly care for the name they chose to describe the social media phenomenon, I do appreciate the terrific insight and research they’ve provided.

One graphical representation from the book helps explain the Social Technographics® Profile in the form of a Ladder to represent consumers’ social computing behavior categorized by participation.

Social Technographics Ladder

The social participation rungs in the ladder are (from bottom to top): Inactives, Spectators, Joiners, Collectors, Critics, and Creators with explanations of each. The authors provide various samples of profiles to help drive home the point that different people come to you and your company or organization at very different levels of social media participation.

The POST Method

There are implications for business in assessing participation, especially when one applies the POST method for a social media strategy:

    1. Assess the social activities of your People;

 

  • Decide what Objectives you want to accomplish;

 

 

  • Plan your Strategy for changes in customer relations; then

 

 

  • Decide on the suitable Technology or technologies to meet your goals.

 

 

I was struck by something so simple, but could have serious implications for those interested in social media if forgotten:
The POST method starts with “P” for People.

 

People Matter

If you don’t have your people, (audience, stakeholders, customers, community, or any other term you use) your social media strategy will be much harder to effectively implement and accurately assess.

To often Communication/PR practitioners are presented with the challenge of adding a social media to their communication efforts and they jump straight to the latest and greatest social media technology with buzz.

I am all for jumping in and experimenting with social media mainly because you are more credible if you’ve experienced the various forms of social media. This holds true even if you outsource.

However, I caution (from experience) that your community participation assessment should come first.

If the biggest sin in social media is inaction, then I think the biggest mistake is not knowing your people.