06 April 2012

CIOs don't use Social Media

This article about CIOs and Social Media is a bit of a misnomer. (See CIO: Getting New Value out of Social Media.) CIOs aren't big users of social media. Somewhere deep in the layers of management, you'll find users of social media. That will change as today's adopters age into corporate leadership roles, but for now, rest assured your CIO isn't tweeting or following anyone - it's someone in Marketing Communications. Disillusioned? Oh, grow up. We all know how that works.

When I built out the social media strategy for the largest division of a global Fortune 10 company, my biggest challenge was selling everyone on targeted interactions. People who don't understand social media think there is merit in noise: How many tweets did we send about our trade show booth? How many followers do we have on Facebook? How many clicks did we get on that blog post?

These measures have some validity, but if ever the maxim quality over quantity applies, it's here. Corporations happily spew all kinds of information into the interwebs and Aunt Sally is more than happy to read her sweet niece's blog posts. The real question is whether you are reaching decision makers and influencers. Do you even know who they are? Ed Steinike didn't become Coca-Cola's VP and CIO by reading blogs and following IT sales people on Twitter. 

Remember, Social Media isn't free - it just feels that way. There's enormous opportunity there, but very few utilize it effectively. You have to do your research. You have to be strategic. Otherwise, you should just pay your Social Media team to stand in a field and shout into the wind - or to Aunt Sally. She'll be there to support her sweet niece.

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