If you’re responsible for marketing your organization, it’s vital that you have full access to all social media websites. However, it’s becoming more and more frequent that marketing departments are facing harsh restrictions. We hear this all the time.
So, what do you do when you find yourself in this situation?
Here are the steps you need to take to justify a change:
1. Develop a logical and quantifiable argument as to why your organization needs to be a part of the online conversation.
- Use reputation management to capture the good and the bad. Try sites like Social Mention, or tools such as HootSuite or Sprout Social to monitor and collect your mentions. This is hard evidence that you can present to your IT department to accentuate the importance of your participation in both online opportunities and online negativity that requires a response.
2. Be specific. Give your IT department a list of the unique people who need access to social media websites.
- Generally, this list is short and inclusive of your marketing department. This is helpful for IT to see because they often generalize solutions when it comes to company-wide issues. Show them that this access will be easy for them to monitor and control, and that you’re not asking for everyone to gain access to social media sites.
3. Consider drafting a contract to signify your dedication to proper Internet use.
- Something to the effect of, “I agree to only use social media sites for work-related uses and to exercise good judgment in the sites I use and the information I provide.” You should be using social media websites for work alone, so commit to making this statement for the sake of IT and your integrity as a professional.
4. Show IT a case study that serves as an inspiration.
- While this could border on the argument of, ‘everyone else is doing it, so why can’t we?’, try to approach this from the positive angle. Paint a picture of what your organization could accomplish based on the great things other organizations are doing in the online world.
5. Don’t forget to say “please.”
- Sounds like a given, but sometimes we forget to be polite. No IT department wants to hear your demands and complaints, so keep this in mind.
If you have any additional thoughts on ways to handle this situation, please post a comment below!
I loved this article on the social media frontier. While it’s particular to healthcare, it really can be applicable to all industries. After reading this article I had some key observations that all companies need to understand in order for social media to make sense:
1. Social media is a complement to your targeted advertising. It shouldn’t be the only thing you’re doing — rather, it should fit into your overall marketing program.
2. If you’re not setting the pace in the industry, your competitors are. Know what your competition is doing in terms of social media, evaluate it and then determine how you can stay ahead of them.
3. Social media requires proper staffing to do it right. Consider hiring a community manager.
4. Social media programs should be a response to the hot topics within your industry. A great example of this can be found in the article referenced earlier — hospitals relevant to healthcare reform.
Consider these points in light of your organization. What are you doing to become better educated in social media and to use it more wisely?
Social media makes sense for your organization. But the better question is: “Does social media make sense to you?” If it doesn’t take heart in these two things:
1. You’re not alone – others have felt this same way.
2. You can gain knowledge quickly by experimenting with social media – become familiar with the programs and options by reading articles online, attending webinars, reading the latest books and hiring a consultant. After all most ‘Social Media Consultants’ in major corporations didn’t graduate with a degree in social media, they simply educated themselves.
Consider today how you can make sense of social media. It’s now or never.