The guide to aligning Social Media and Business Goals.
Social Media prctices need to be aligned around the business goals. The Social Media KPIs need to be translated so as to aid the Business KPIs. These two ingradients can make Social Media practices to be class A priorities in an organisational context : things social media practioners need to keep in mind to be more effective
This is unanimous that, the social media practices if adopted appropriately, can multiply the responsiveness of an organisation, adding to the efficiency and effectiveness in most of the functions. The Covid-19 situations, have brought the social media and digital practices to forefront for every type of organisation across segments around the globe.
Social Media Goals and the Business Goals
In spite of having all the ingredients to be a part of the business KPIs, we still find, social media has remained as a communication tool or PR tool or a lead generation tool for most of the organisations. We are yet to see it being integrated with the Business KPIs.
The Social media practices can reduce the gap between the user and the organisation by refining the processes aligned with real time data continually. They can be excellent tools towards making business KPIs aligned around users, customers, processes, people and other business objectives.
Recently when a CEO wanted to consider whether he should lead the social media practices of the organisation, he made the CFO and the social media practitioner sit together to understand whether the CFO too can have certain Social Media KPIs aligned around his work. The plan was shelved.
It will require both the organisations and the Social media practitioners work together to evolve it to be integrated with the KPIs of the business functions. More for the social media practioners to spend appropriate time around the customers’ business and practices.
Some of the key elements need to be addressed are
Aligning social media practices with the organisation not the vice versa
Every Social Media practitioner says, the website is the key to the social media presence for an organisation. The website is one of the entities which connects all the stake holders of the organisation with the outside world. But we hardly find a social media practitioner who is willing to take up both the website and social media optimisation together and work on the business KPIs. They all say, these are two different skills !
I remember a time when we got many enthusiastic quotations to optimise the website and similar number of responses towards social media practices. However we could not find a single taker who was willing to participate with KPIs integrating both the social media and website practices. It was really surprising !
The Social media terminologies
The social media terminologies when aligned with the business practices can be very good lead indicators.
During a recent discussion, the ‘backlinks’ came as, one of the key tools to increase responsiveness, where the business has been struggling for new ideas. However, it also came out that, certain amount of work to be done around the backlinks so as to align them with the business goals. It required the social media practitioner to spend more quality time to understand the objectives and practices of the business.
Making the Social Media practices aligned around the business will make the integration of social media practices with the business more effective rather than trying to making the business align itself around social media practices.
The social media is being portrayed as a white collared practice in most of the workplaces. The languages, terminologies, practices, KPIs seem very distant from the regular business goals.
Social Media practices can be vehicles to achieve the business KPIs. These are isolated indicators The can not lead business processes in isolation. However, they are being portrayed as the end goals.
Spending appropriate time around the business
This is the biggest disconnect amongst all. Instead of carrying the social media deliverables, we find the social media practitioners riding them. It needs to be kept simple, easy and connected around the business goals.
During a recent exercise when we wanted to hire professional services for Social Media practices, every proposal looked similar. It took us quite a amount of time to align with the right organisation only on the basis who was willing to spend more time with our business.
We shall all agree, the goals of every business will be different and so will be the social media objectives and practices. It needs the social media practitioner to spend time around the business, practices, processes continually so as to make the social story for the organisation evolve.
Productisation of Social Media tools
The social media KPIs have stories to tell. However they need to be aligned with the business goals of the organisation.
For that matter, the objectives/practices of every organisation are are different so will be the Social Media objectives and KPIs. The SM practices can not lead in isolation.
The business men is never excited with the forced success imposed on them in the name of social media enablement. Transactional goals, like Increasing traffic to the website
Making the website no-1 in google search
Putting advertisement in the paid media for lead generation
make social media a Class-C priority for the owner. They do not make any business man curious.
Tendency amongst the social media practitioners to put every thing under one formula, leads to lack of alignment towards the business. It productises the practices. As a marketing tool, productization of social media practices might work at times, but when we intend to connect with business goals, they need to be customised.
The prevailing productised social media KPIs do not deliver aspiring value for the organisation. In spite of all good intentions & interest on the part of the owner, the initiatives do not take off.
Concentrating Social Media practices around the Google/LinkedIn/Facebook rule book
There are universes behind the search bars of Google/LinkedIn/ Facebook. They truly are powerful to support the business perspectives. The social media practitioner need to spend time on the business practices so as to align my business goals around Google/LinkedIn/Facebook as vehicles towards achieving my business KPIs.
How to integrate Social Media Practices with the Business KPIs ?
This is unanimous that, social media practices if adopted appropriately, can increase the responsiveness of the organisation in terms of market presence, enthusiasm and people engagement.
The social media story for every organisation needs to evolve. The Social Media practitioner and the businesses must be willing to spend time around theorganisation, ecosystem and its market place.
Like the Mission Quality (MQ) team in every organisation, the Social Media team can be enablers for every business team. This will help the social media alignment evolve around the eco system of the organisation aligned.
The Covid-19 situations, have brought the social media and digital practices to the forefront for every type of organisation across segments around the globe. It is a compulsion to-day, the organisations align the social media practices around the businesses so as to sustain the business momentum.
If adopted appropriately, these practices can definitely multiply the responsiveness of an organisation, adding to the efficiency and effectiveness in most of the functions.