Businesses Are Being LIED to by Their Agencies and Experts
The world has changed. Firms are at risk of going out of business faster than ever. Without innovation and adaptability, small and mid-sized businesses will fail. Those who remain could become the Microsoft's of tomorrow, but they must adapt and change quickly if they hope to survive.
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Social media is often thought of as Facebook, Twitter or Blogging, and while they ARE part of social media strategy, they are simply tactics—small pieces of the overall puzzle.
An effective strategy will:
- Generate business opportunities in both the short
and long term.
- Shorten sales cycles, increase pipelines, and
generate positive word-of-mouth.
- And much more!
Businesses are being LIED to by their agencies and experts, not on purpose, but out of ignorance. They are getting told what to do based on the skill sets of that agency or expert.
Social media is not—as many leading experts say—"A Cocktail Party." It's more like a visit to the boardroom if done correctly.
So many experts have social media dead wrong. No one person can be all things in all social networks, as there are more than 11,000 relevant changes in social media every year that can positively or negatively affect any company in business today! Many quotes from social media experts come without real credibility because they speak without demonstration. Just because they are now heading up social media for Ford or Pepsi, doesn't make them social media gurus. They learn a lot, but do not have the hands on experience needed to really leverage social media in the way it was meant to be used—as a
tool for dialog.
A great example is a Fortune 1000 client of ours that went through our signature SIQMA™ program—a 360-degree review of their social media program compared to best practices from proven demonstrated experts around the world. The client was told by their agency prior to our engagement to simply do the standard Facebook page and some mommy blogger campaigns. In some respects it was successful, but hardly strategic, and far from a scalable process or system they could duplicate.
Instead of it becoming an executive initiative, it became a digital marketing test. With low investment and strategic insight, this endeavor was doomed from the beginning. The few campaigns you hear about creating success are the exceptions, not the rule, because they are not based on SIQMA™ standards. After this experience with the agency, our SIQMA™ results suggested a complete market saturation—go big, go fast approach—otherwise, the recommendation is DON'T DO IT.
Our recommendations included an integrated strategy across departments (not just marketing), was completely in line with all social media best practices, and with an incremental cost representing only a fraction of their total marketing budget. Following the agency's so called "social media strategy" (which was really a tactical play), the client experienced failure and subsequently walked away from social media saying what many others have said, namely, "Social media doesn't work." The fact is, their project never had a chance.