Opinion | Should agencies or brands be responsible for social media?
In the first of our series on social media and the argument for/against outsourcing social media, we ask Colin Richardson, Global Social Media Marketing Manager at Trend Micro, “When it comes to social media strategy and content aggregation, we see brands, PR, advertising and digital agencies get involved, but who should actually be responsible for social media for a brand?”
“Whether they’re aware of it or not, Social Media is an integrated part of the modern marketing mix for almost all brands. It’s no longer a question of if you want to start the conversation, It’s already taking place without you! For me, the question of ‘who owns Social Media?’ was as simple as ‘who has most to gain from driving the conversion?’. The answer is in all most all cases the brand.
‘Social Media’ is a term used so incredibly loosely in business today, and it is often the case because those at the top lack the understanding of Social Media’s strategic value in driving other areas of the business. Today, Social Media is frequently an ‘activity’ started with good intention, but poor long term strategic planning and half-hearted execution lead to poor internal and external buy-in.
Many large corporations have been slow to fully integrate and exploit the potential of Social Media because the business owners have often been the wrong people for the job – Marketing, Sales, or PR. Ever heard the phrase ‘We should do Social Media’? With a lack of understanding, able resource, and strategic vision, Social has too long been seen as a sandbox activity which offers no tangible benefit to the wider organisation other than a feel-good factor or as an additional promotional channel for PR/Sales. This has lead to many looking outside of the organisation to agencies for support and leadership.
Having worked with a multitude of agencies, consultants, or ‘gurus’ in the past 3 years I can say with absolute certainty that the only person that should be driving your Social strategy is you the brand! External agencies can provide a valuable level of operational support whilst you grow your Social Media team, but investment in your own long term infrastructure is often the best use of your time, budget, and Exec level management buy-in.”
As a global leader in cloud security, Trend Micro develops Internet content security and threat management solutions that make the world safe for businesses and consumers to exchange digital information. With more than 20 years of experience, they are recognised as the market leader in server security for delivering top-ranked client, server, and cloud-based security solutions that stop threats faster and protect data in physical, virtualised and cloud environments. www.trendmicro.co.uk