Wednesday, September 10, 2008

How To Add New Media To Your Existing Media and Communications Department

Think of social media as the online version of business socials. Groups such as the Tech Council of Maryland offer the opportunity to meet with your colleagues. Social Media is the online version of that, only it offers the possibility of working all the time. Your online conversations will be similar to the sort of things you say in the social hour before meetings and the individual conversations at the tables.

Put your blog or blogs on your site, failing that, build an RSS reader that picks up headlines of posts.

Redo your media page to make it friendly to social media

Build a sense of community, for example, on your website, link to online discussion groups concerned with your industry. This will encourage your employees, partners, and customers to participate in those discussions, drive traffic to your site, and build your online presence.

Most important tip of all:
Encourage your employees to use social media. Encourage them to link to your partner’s blogs. Social media should NOT be the monopoly of the communications department.

Blogs and microblogging (Twitter, Friendfeed, etc.) can be used to promote upcoming events. Twitter can amplify the effect of an event as participants send out Tweets about the event in progress. This can be good or bad, but it is something we all have to get used to.

Develop some basic guidelines for corporate blogging, no flame wars, etc.

Keep in mind we are speaking of corporate blogs. We live in a free society, your employees' personal blogs are not your concern.

Examples of good local tech blogs

Encourage employees to put links to their Twitter account, Digg, Slashdot page, and any other site they use in their work.

Most of all, keep in mind that social media is here whether we want it or not. Better to make it your friend rather than your adversary.

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