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Six Tips for Presenting a Social Media Strategy to the C-Suite

July 8, 2011  

If you are rockin' the social sphere, at some point you may have to present your work to some higher-ups. No pressure.

Just remember this: Your presentation could mean the difference between enterprise adoption of a great new social media strategy—or the relegation of social to the broom closet. (Just sayin'.)

But fear not. Here are five tips based on the thinking of strategist Mitch Joel that could help make your next presentation to the C-suite a real winner:

Be authentic, not just memorable. Being frank about what has worked so far in your social outreach and what hasn't isn't just useful to the bosses in the room; it's relatable. It means you were once in their shoes—deciphering the best approach.

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  • by Michael Sun Jul 10, 2011 via web

    These are great concerns and points that you make. I think because social media strategies and best practices are still being developed it's difficult to be open to suggestions by the higher ups who still may not know or understand the benefits of social media. Being confident in the results and open to critique is essential in building trust for the management team. Thanks for sharing.

  • by Nick Stamoulis Mon Jul 11, 2011 via web

    "keep the tone conversational, not combative."

    This is a great piece of advice that everyone can use. Putting people (whether your coworkers, customers, boss or clients) on the defensive doesn't help you make your case. You can't attack people for not seeing things your way. It's your job to guide them through the process.

  • by Tue Jul 12, 2011 via web

    Remember that the C-suite wants to hear about BENEFITS, in a balanced presentation that includes important issues like perhaps: privacy, transparency, control (lack of), exposures, etc.

    In terms of benefits, frame talking points in terms of how the proposed social media strategy will enable the enterprise to SAVE, EARN, GROW, PROTECT, COMPLY AND SUSTAIN. For example the "Save" verb could have objects including "money", "time", "effort" ; the "Earn" verb could have objects including "money", "trust", "respect", "standing", "rewards", customer loyalty, etc. Think these C-suite benefit verbs and objects through and then prioritize them in terms of overall C-level importance and impact. Cover the top combinations in the formal presentation and relegate the rest to an "other benefits" list available for the Q&A discussion.

    Be prepared to address the timing of results and the applicable metrics that connect the proposed strategy to promised benefits.

  • by Tue Jul 12, 2011 via web

    One more note. Make sure to find out in advance how knowledgeable the audience is about the subject area and tailor the language of the presentation, accordingly. Avoid jargon and do not plan to take the C-suite into unfamiliar territory.

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