In this article, you'll learn...
- What traits to look for in your next social media strategist
- Four tips to keep in mind when sifting through resumes
Though social media is now a legitimate part of the marketing mix, it's not always readily apparent who should lead a company's social marketing efforts. Most times, a social-media-savvy employee ends up being the "corporate social strategist," more or less by default.
But is that the best way to fill such an important role in your organization? That is, when choosing someone to lead the charge on the social media front, would you want someone who is, merely by dint of personal inclination, "good at social media"? Or would you prefer someone who can use social media to achieve business goals?
I would assume that you'd want the latter. The next question, then, is this: How do you ensure that you are picking the right person to get the job done?
In a recent MarketingProfs online seminar, "How to be a Social Media Strategist, Not the Social Help Desk," analyst Jeremiah Owyang answered that question by offering five suggestions.
1. Hire a business program manager, not a ninja, guru, or maven
Don't concentrate on the hotshots who are wrapped up in their own sense of grandeur. Instead, when hiring a strategist, "first focus on somebody who actually understands business problems, how to deploy resources, and how to measure their effectiveness,” Owyang suggests.
The definition of a strategist doesn't have martial-arts connotations. Instead, according to Owyang, a corporate social strategist is "a business decision-maker of the social media programs. She is the champion, and she provides leadership, road map definition, and innovation. She also influences the spending and buying of… technologies in social business, as well as the agencies, vendors, consultants, and research." The social media strategist directly influences the spending and overall decisions of social business.
The strategist knows that the focus must be on relationships, not technologies, if social media is to work for one's business. According to Owyang, the old-school way of thinking meant that interaction with customers was transactional, occasional, impersonal, and short term. But a social media strategist understands the passion, constancy, intimacy, and loyalty needed to maintain business-client relationships. (See "Scaling Social Business: How Brands Can Build Their Business Now (and Position for What's Next in Social Media)" seminar.)