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Problem Solved: How Do You Convince the Boss That It's Time to Go Social?

by Claire Coyne  |  
October 6, 2009

There's nothing we love more than solutions葉op-notch insights from top-of-the-line experts that help solve common marketing problems. Here's this week's solution, featuring SAS, which offers us a solution to the following problem: How does Marketing convince the CEO that it's time to embrace social media?

Expert: David B. Thomas, Social Media Manager, SAS

Dave has been active in social media since 1994, when he joined his first Internet forum. He is a key member of the Program Advisory Committee for MarketingProfs' B2B Forum scheduled for May 4-5, 2010 in Boston.

Problem: "Oh, Yeah? Tell That to My Boss!"

You know your company is being left behind because you don't have a social-media presence online. But you find your biggest obstacle is in-house: How do you convince your boss it's time to go social?


Dave offers the following crucial steps for initiating your organization's nonbelievers into the power of social media.

Show and tell. A great way to start making your case in-house is with a good old-fashioned Show and Tell. "For those of us who enjoy doing this stuff daily, it's easy to forget it can be confusing and daunting when you're getting started," Dave notes. "The first step in convincing your boss that social media is valuable for your company is to make it real for him or her."

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Claire Coyne is a writer and editor for MarketingProfs. Reach her via

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  • by Dan Soschin Tue Oct 6, 2009 via web

    A couple other tips that have helped me pitch social media projects...

    1. Highlight how your competition is using various social channels
    2. Include the value of SEO that blogging can bring to a web site (attracting leads at a very low cost
    3. Start small, think big... take on one project to pilot, such as a blog... execute it very well and professionally to demonstrate "you know what you are talking about".
    4. Just do it. Go ahead and go for it... but on your own time, after hours... When you pitch it, say, "I had some spare time this weekend and put together a quick pilot of xyz..."

  • by Allan Schoenberg Tue Oct 6, 2009 via web

    In addition, I would suggest you go in with support from a key ally -- investor relations, information security, products, etc. If you have the support of other key players it makes selling it to the top easier.

  • by Don Lafferty Tue Oct 13, 2009 via web

    Putting SM output into the context of a traditional sales funnel/pipeline model is often eye opening. Generating revenue is a simple numbers game when a company has solid sales process and really understands their target customer. I show the contribution of leads in the funnel and the higher closing ratio of leads generated by a well designed SM strategy or tactic.

  • by Debra Ellis Tue Oct 13, 2009 via web

    Don't forget the analytics. Executive decisions are driven by fiscal requirements. Have a plan that includes current benchmarks, expected improvements, and a timeline for measurement. Include traffic, customer lifetime value, response rates, and sales in your metrics. This provides a method for monitoring the effect of your social media efforts and reduces resistance. Make sure the the timeline is long enough to see the benefits.

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