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Formulating a Social Media Strategy forces the business to look inwards
8th November 2016

Most businesses are outward looking. They are either looking at the customers, markets or at competitors. A few departments by design such as HR might look inwards and the C-Suite might superficially look inwards during strategy making. However overall, the focus of most businesses will remain outwards.

Under normal circumstances that is not an issue but when formulating a social media strategy, the business is forced to look inwards. A business looks at its culture and ethos, because on social media only products and services won't do. If the organization does not have a personality, it will fall flat on these channels.

What are the things businesses look inwards at?

  • Cultural values and ideas that can be shared
  • Thought processes of its leaders and even employees
  • Internal successes that can be highlighted and which differ from the normal awards etc the business wins.
  • Connections to the community and social fabric

Planning the social media strategy brings out the soul of the company. Now, I know it sounds like a little bit hokey, but do bare with me. Does the company have a soul? yes and no. It does not have from the Exorcist point of view (although many companies could do with a good exorcism). But it does have a collective soul that is usually unseen but can be glimpsed at times of tragedy or times of great success.

When discussing social media strategy with a CEO recently, I was struck by how much he wanted to convey the decency, respect and goodness of the organization. These are very soft values that can never be found in the hard hitting marketing literature of products and services. But formulating the social media strategy brought out a hitherto unexplored part of the company.

We tend to forget that companies are made of individuals who have hopes and dreams, pride and respect, humour and strength, knowledge and experience. The best social media strategies leverage these to create a story that resonates with all stakeholders.

Going through a social media strategy experience might end up as one of the best things to happen to any business.

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