Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The Social Media Team – Its More than Just PR & Marketing

This morning, the Social Media Club of Washington, D.C. (@smcdc) hosted a social media breakfast where participants tried to answer the question, “Who is responsible for social media?” The simple answer is all of us.

Today’s speakers included Mike Kohn (@mike_kohn) from the Human Resources Department of SmithGroup, Brian Reilly (@ReillyBri) from the Marketing Department of the Smith Group and Erin Orr (@ErinOrr) from the Marketing Department of Fox Architects. The overarching message from today’s session was clear; in order for any company to have a successful social media program, you must have buy-in, support and participation from a variety of departments. This includes marketing, public relations, government affairs, legal, human resources and, of course, the c-suite. All these parties need to come together with clear goals for social media. After the goals are determined, then you can figure out what resources, tools or personnel can make those goals a reality.

Getting representatives from all these areas into a room to achieve one goal can often lead to a difference of opinions. The panel agreed that everyone needs to check their egos and department-specific hats at the door and think about what is best for the company. With all these opinions and actions floating around a company, Erin Orr added that it is imperative that someone step up to be the “air traffic controller” of the social media campaign.

The biggest challenge for any social media campaign is demonstrating results. Today’s speakers seem to agree that there are many metrics a company can use to measure the success of a social media campaign, but translating those results into a direct business success remains a mystery. At PCG, we begin our social media campaigns with metric goals that may include X amount of fans on Facebook, a certain amount of ‘Retweets’ on Twitter or getting a specific number of comments on blog posts. As the campaigns continue, our definition of success will change along with our goals.

Thanks to the speakers and SMCDC for a lively discussion. To find out more about SMCDC or join the next discussion, visit http://smcdc.wordpress.com/

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