FountainBlue’s July 12 When She Speaks, Women in Leadership Series event was on the topic of Leveraging Social Media for Work and Play. Below are notes from the conversation.
We were fortunate to have a wide range of perspectives on our panel, and that our panelists shared their insights, suggestions and advice with poignant humor and candor. They spoke from a broad range of perspectives, learnings, trainings and experience and each humbly brought their insights and advice on the whole new frontier of social media, and how each is bravely making a mark and shaping the evolution of communication-as-we-know-it.
Our panel represents professionals from communication, engineering, media, training, and other areas. Each panelist traversed a range of roles in an assortment of tech companies of various sizes, and finds herself working in a corporate setting leveraging social media to communicate to a range of stakeholders. Each also has been actively involved in creating and maintaining a social personal preference as well. Below are some guidelines and advice for leveraging social media for work and play.
Remember that social media is a whole new frontier – there are no experts, and the early adopters and leaders are helping to define guidelines, policies and rules for optimizing communication. Below are some guidelines for doing so:
- Be clear about what you want to communicate to whom, and how you go about doing so, in alignment with your objectives.
- Be authentic in your communication.
- Jump in, but only after you’re ready with your message, and ready with a response from the community.
- Remember that there are a range of stakeholders, and a range of communicators.
- Help communicators at all levels message to their target audiences and help them align their messages with corporate standards.
- If you set up a social media presence, maintain it and be there for each target audience. Follow up and follow through to serve your customers.
- Do the research beforehand to know who your customers are and how best to communicate with them.
- Train the communicators and help them understand the impact and range of their communications.
- In the end, you can have policies and standards in place, but you have to trust the judgment of the communicators.
- Set limits on communications – look at worst case down-sides of a message-on-the-edge-of-protocol.
- Mitigate risks, but remember that life happens. Be prepared to address any downsides of communications which may have inadvertently damaged relationships.
- Have a plan for when bad things happen.
- If life happens, try to make the best of it, and see it as an opportunity to build alliances and relationships.
- Build communities of stakeholders and target communications to these niche audiences, while empowering their active engagement.
- The keys to a successful community are continuity – people have stable, consistent ways to connect and communicate with each – and dialogue – people actively talk to each other, following established guidelines for the group.
- Building an actively engaged set of communities helps corporations understand and connect with stakeholders at all levels.
- Empowering communities to participate in product definition, feature requirements and to communicate their evolving needs will help companies continue to meet the needs of the customer. It is more effective and more cost-effective than the one-on-one surveys or user group input.
Social media tools worth considering:
- LinkedIn: get your profile up and connect with your colleagues
- FaceBook: important for social and personal connections
- Instagram and Pinterest: important as social media evolves toward more graphics and video oriented tools
- Twitter: Tweet about your activities and follow influencers
- Scoop.it: position yourself as a content expert by curating and retweeting what others are writing about
- Blogs: express your opinion and gather a following
- Google+ and Google Circles: targeted communications to pre-defined niche audiences
- Radiant6: tool for measuring social media impact
- Hoot Suite: helps you coordinate your social media presences and communicate selectively to them
Social media opportunities:
- Enterprise solutions around social media
- Graphic and video solutions for social media
- Efficient ways to leverage communities to define customer needs and product direction
In the end, the message is clear: the social media landscape is new and evolving. Choose to be social-media literate and know how social media will impact you and your company, for it is here to stay.
Thank you to our panelists for FountainBlue’s July 12 When She Speaks, Women in Leadership Series event was on the topic of Leveraging Social Media for Work and Play:
Facilitator Kim Wise, CEO, Mentor Resources
Panelist Perrine Crampton, Community Programs Manager, CITRIX
Panelist Aimee Kalnoskas, Worldwide Community Digital Editor, Texas Instruments
Panelist Shveta Miglani, Deputy Director for Training, Globalfoundries
Panelist Olivia Shen Green, Manager, Business Ops, Engineering Talent and Culture, Cisco
Please join us also in thanking our speakers for taking the time to share their advice and thoughts and to our gracious hosts at Cisco.