Where to begin with Social Media?

This is actually a question for both me and you. As I start this blog focused on Social Media and how this medium can be used by corporations to further their mission, I continually think about how to structure my blog. For instance, sequence all of the content that I have in mind, etc. And while it is important to choose a starting point, it is actually more important to have a direction that you want to head. It actually helps me in deriving that where to begin with Social Media for companies or maybe for an entity.

When getting started in Social Media, there are two general starting points that I find companies taking.

The first is to just have a presence, such as a twitter account or a Facebook page, where the company is pushing out content into these channels. The second starting point, which if not their #1 step, quickly becomes #2, is to start listening to the conversations. Conversations that are taking place in social media handles. While everyone who is reading this is probably blatantly aware of both of these starting points. What is many times left out of the equation is just where a company is headed.

I know that it is hard to define a set of goals for your organization when you don’t know what you can possibly achieve. This is just how it was a few years back as corporations started building websites. In the beginning they asked ‘Why do I need a website?’ or ‘Will my company go out of business if I don’t have a website? I hear very similar questions in the Social Media space these days.

In the website days, companies found it hard to establish goals since they didn’t understand just what opportunities these new technologies provided. For those forward thinkers, the early days of the Internet provided for strategic competitive advantage for first movers. So, where to begin with Social Media?

For a better beginning, define the goals that you know that you can an impact on.

Keep searching for the new opportunities in the market that exist and you will uncover over time. Maintain a flexible organization that can adjust where adjustment is needed and don’t lock yourself into anything. You will need to shift and learn as you go. Just keep in mind that there are roadmaps for you to follow that can help you reach your goals, but you may need to search them out.

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