Recently I was invited to the Swedish Advertising Association to keep a network session together with Rebecca Crusoe from Domingo PR, now Isobar Sweden. The theme was ”Measurement and monitoring of activities in social media and how your employees’ engagement in social media can reinforce your brand”.
I was interested in hearing how pr practitioners at Swedish companies think of social media in their working places. If they take advantage of their employees networks and how they value and measure social media activities throughout the organization.
Lots of interesting discussions took place and lots of questions were raised. We could easily have gone on all day, but this time we had only two hours. Below are some of the areas that raised the most questions and were considered the biggest challenges for the pr practitioners. (A post from one of the participants.)
Who owns social media in the organization and how to manage a Facebook Page – the most challenging topics
We discussed, among other things, how we work with social media in our respective businesses and how we measure and follow up activities. How we value commitment and who ”owns” the issue of social media in the organization. Also, social media policies and who gets to say what on the social web. Who are the spokespersons?
For most, social media was ”owned” and handled by the pr department. Some had very restrictive regulations of what people might say about their working place, even in their private social networks, having to direct all press related questions to the pr-dep. Others was struggling with the lack of interest for social media, wondering how to get people to be more active, and how to make the management team prioritize pr and social media.
We spent a lot of time discussing Facebook Pages. That seems to be the top of mind for social media and is the ever recurring topic. It also brought the most questions this day. How to encourage participation and interaction, resources for answering customer questions and how to manage campaigns/advertising was the biggest issues. Also what content to provide and how often to post. Most of the participants had a corporate Facebook Page, but not many were running a corporate blog. Twitter was more common, and foremost for answering questions.
The most efforts regarding social media was directed to the corporate accounts, not so much about engaging the employees in dialog on the web or enable for employee networking. For example, most had not investigated if their employees have personal blogs, but did not think that was the case.
The biggest four challenges was considered to be:
- Policies and strategies, who, where and what? Who is responsible? What goals are good and relevant for pr and social media? And how do we measure?
- Facebook Page, advertising, content and frequency.
- How to encourage participation, from clients but also internally.
- Place, where to participate and weather to build your own forums or go for existing channels.
The biggest thing I brought with me, is the understanding of how limited the time is for research and understanding of social media for the general pr practitioner. I myself can sometimes feel it is a heavy, but fun, work, to keep up to date with all the news and best practice within pr, community and social media management, even though I am working for a company in the pr industry. Most pr practitioners out there are struggling both to keep up with their niche/industry, learning about their products and markets, which can be far away from media, also striving to keep up in the communications field. I think most of you are doing a damn good job!