Our Thinking

Social Networking Integration

Have you ever considered how some words (and technologies) are so important, yet in the fullness of time completely disappear?  Buggy whips, Barrel makers (“coopers”), and Telex machines  are but a few examples.  Not fifteen years ago, the term “ebusiness” was popular, until people figured out that there was no such thing as ebusiness – just “business”.

Today, we may be at a very similar turning point.  Consider the terms Social Media and Social Networking:  what do they mean from a business perspective?   Communication, engagement, community-building, research source, advertising venue, sales channel, support mechanism are but a few examples.  These same terms are the basic marketing building blocks of any successful business; it’s reasonable to expect that the requirement for a completely separate “Social” strategy will seem silly.  From an IT perspective, it is very much the same: at one point there were Word processing strategies and Laptop strategies.  No longer.

The movement of a technology (or a marketing channel) from a special place to commonplace is not binary – it happens one step at a time.  And it happens as leaders begin to understand the importance of a complete social media integration with their organization: not a tack-on delegated to marketing or HR.

This week’s action plan:  Look for one way to integrate Social Media into your day-to-day responsibilities. Contrived tasks or generic surfing don’t count: using the social web to achieve your annual objectives does.

This week’s (flip-side) action plan:  On the flip side of complete social integration, is how quickly you retire some of the “old” processes and technologies.  Still have fax machines or fax numbers on business cards – or have you replaced these with Twitter handles and Skype addresses? This week, look for a few examples of “old” that you can replace with the new.

Randall Craig, president of 108 ideaspace, is a leading Social Media & Web Strategist.  We share Randall Craig’s blogs here on 108 ideaspace. However, the Make It Happen Tipsheet is also available by email. Go to www.RandallCraig.com to register.

This post has been written by 108’s Senior advisor and former CEO Randall Craig.