Wednesday, April 23, 2008

The Social Side of Business

The session "Creating a Coherent Social Strategy for Business"was given by Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff of Forrester Research. The presentation was based on their book - Groundswell.
Focus on the Social and not on the technology.
There is a continuum of scale in the Social:
  1. Purist - People are the most powerful force on the net
  2. Pragmatist - People are in charge but corporations can benefit
  3. Corporatist - Online activity must deliver business benefit
"Objectives are the key to successful social strategy"
There is a four step approach:
  1. People - Assess your customers social activities
  2. Objectives 
  3. Strategy
  4. Technology
On the People side there are six steps in the Social Technographics Ladder. In the US the breakdown is:
  1. Creators - 18%
  2. Critics - 25%
  3. Collectors - 12%
  4. Joiners - 25%
  5. Spectators - 48%
  6. Inactives - 44%
People can be in more than one category so the totals add up to more than 100%.
Groundswell Objectives
  • Research - Listening
  • Marketing - Talking
  • Sales - Energizing
  • Support - Supporting
  • Development - Embracing
In the session they used the Best Buy Social Network for employees as an example of a  supporting objective. This is one of the clients where Hinchcliffe & Co have been working to help the company to adapt to a Web 2.0 world.
The ROI of Executive Blogging
This was based on the GM Fastlane blog. Year one costs were $285K of which most went on content production and review ($170K). 
The value was estimated at $353K with most value ($240K) coming from the value of placing stories in the press.
Tips for Success as pragmatists
  • Start with your customers
  • Choose an objective you can measure
  • Line up executive backing
  • Romance the naysayers
  • Start small but think big
Pragmatists bring companies and the groundswell together. Objectives are the key. Frame your strategy.