I recently presented at Microstrategy’s iCommerce Summit in Amsterdam on the importance of looking inside to improve how to engage on the outside. Following the event, I was invited to join Peter Gentsch of Big, Michael Buck of Dell, and Andreas Bock of Telekom. The conversation explored the importance of rethinking how businesses approach social media. Rather than driving social media strategies based on just clever ideas, campaigns, soft KPIs, and intangible results, I shared the importance of focusing on the bigger picture. At stake is nothing less than not only the future of social media in your organization, but more importantly, how decision makers recognize and value relationships throughout the customer life cycle.
I’m writing this post while visiting Antwerp, Belgium as part of the Social Business Sessions I’m hosting along with The Fusion Marketing Experience. While here, I had an opportunity to spend time with several Belgian journalists. One of the notable conversations was with Erik Verdonck of Pub, a local magazine focused on the advertising industry. The three themes we touched upon are not only timely, but representative of the challenges that face marketers and strategists around the globe.
The new world of Social Media is among the most actively analyzed, misunderstood, and at the same time, celebrated mediums affecting businesses today. At the very least, it introduces a renewed sense of vigor that is challenging creativity and convention and also inspiring more human connections in the process. Social Media also introduces new channels and methodologies to drive and measure sales, service, and marketing. As such, discerning business executives seek direction to evaluate the opportunity costs associated with new media as well as establish the ROI of engaging in popular networks such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.