Tagged: training

Hoot Suite on the future of social media

Hoot Suite CEO, Ryan Holmes

Here is a good piece from Hoot Suite’s CEO, Ryan Holmes (thanks to Alex Robinson for spotting this).  It demonstrates the extent to which organisations are starting to move into what I see as the second phase of social media: shifting away from seeing it as a channel and message challenge, to being a behaviour identification and response challenge.  (See this I wrote a while back and also points six and seven of my Simplicity Manifesto.)

This is the point where social media becomes understood as a business process, rather than being defined (and measured) in terms of communications outputs (content, reach, frequency etc).

That said, I think there still is a central role – someone I call a corporate DJ (rather than a social media manager) and their role is to to basically listen to requests and source the responses required.  Likewise there is still a centralised function- which is not about producing the content or managing the conversation but in facilitating the process of decentralising social media (training, process management) and spreading it into a business.


Advanced social media training

Richard Stacy Advanced Social Media TrainingA bespoke, one-day seminar

I deliver bespoke, one-day seminars, that help organisations understand social media as a business process that will create measurable improvements in business performance.  The output of these seminars is:

  • A totally new way of understanding social media
  • An action plan that can be implemented immediately.

I call this advanced, or stage two, social media training. Click here and you can download the full story as an Infographic, otherwise, read on.

Why advanced? Why stage two (and what was stage one)?

My experience of working with organisations over the last seven years is that the social media journey goes something like this:

Stage one: tools

This is where the focus is on the tools (mostly Facebook, Twitter and blogs) and how to use them as new channels to reach customers or consumers.  As with traditional media, we assume that the objective is to maximise the usage or reach of these channels and that the best way to do this is by producing lots of stuff and the content or activity which creates the most engagement, or scores the highest reach, gets awarded the ROI prize.

Stage two: destination

Then someone points out an awkward fact: simply measuring (and increasing) engagement is not the basis for defining a return on investment – unless you can show how all this engagement actually benefits the business.  The inability to establish this link forces an organisation to shift from seeing usage of the tools as the objective to focusing on achieving measurable improvements in business performance.  Key to doing this is understanding social media as a business process, rather that a set of communications outputs.  It is not about trying to engage audiences, it is about identifying and responding to individuals – mostly actual or potential customers.

Stage three: scale

This is where the organisation takes what it has learned from stage two and rolls these processes out across the whole business.  A social business process becomes integrated into all business systems and the challenge becomes framed by how you change the business, not by how you change communications.

My focus is on managing the transition from stage one to stage two.  Knowing if you are ready to take this step is not dependent on the size of your organisation or the length of time you have been ‘doing’ social media.  It is only dependent on a realisation that you can’t justify, in terms that the CEO of finance director would appreciate, why you actually have a Facebook page or Twitter account (or maybe even why you should set up these in the first place).


Each seminar costs £1,500 (€1,800) and I am sure you will see it as money well spent.  However, don’t take my word for it, take these people’s words:

Richard’s ability to communicate his knowledge so effectively meant our team came away from the session finally understanding the full benefits of using social media and a very clear plan of how to move forward.

Carl Holloway,
Senior Communications Officer,
Preston City Council

Richard’s work is great, it helps our clients understand how to use social media, but also how to make it complement traditional broadcast media.

Alison PageDirector of Client & Category Development,Global Radio

Our session with Richard helped us understand how to focus our digital activity on the areas where we could actually achieve measurable and positive outcomes.

Eike Wobker
Digital Media Manager
Biersdoff CEE (Nivea)

I have always had suspicions that many brands haven’t yet worked out how to use social media effectively.  Richard’s work has shown me why I was right to have those suspicions.

Dominic Lyle
Director, European Association
of Communications Agencies

If you are want to talk to me about creating a seminar for your own organisation, drop me a line at stacyconsulting@googlemail.com



How to make your crisis plan ‘social media compliant’

Enough of the theory (for the time being).  There is a very practical impact of social media that affects every organisation right now.  This is the fact that every crisis management plan and process is now out of date – unless it has been made ‘social media compliant’.

If you now have a crisis, you have no time or space within which to hide.  You are essentially in the business of performing ‘live’ within a rolling 24/7 press conference.  This requires different skills and preparation – just as doing live TV is different from making a documentary.

However, this is not all bad news.  Social media allows you to communicate directly with the people you need to influence, without having to rely on the filter of the media.  This can make it easier to get information out much quicker, to dampen concerns and emotions and to limit the extent to which a crisis can develop or spread.

There are five things an organisation needs to do to make their crisis preparation social media compliant.

  1. Monitor social media in real-time
  2. Establish a management process that delivers a response that is quicker and more specific to the needs of social media, rather than adapted only to the needs of traditional media
  3. Create an information publication platform that is optimised to spread information effectively through social networks
  4. Re-purpose your existing information so that it can spread easily through social networks
  5. Incorporate social media into your crisis training.

Looking at these points in more detail. Continue reading