Many companies have jumped on board social media as a part of their marketing strategy but internal business implementations have been slow to follow. The decision to launch a social networking and collaboration site in-house seems to hit two major obstacles. The first is universal to all internal applications as they are not as strongly market driven they are more thoroughly scrutinized for investment justification. The second is that many users now familiar with popular social media applications, like FaceBook, label them entertainment applications. The second hurdle impacts not only companies looking to launch internal social media applications but managers accepting and encouraging their resources to jump on board. Viral, bottom up acceptance usually works wonders with the second hurdle but what about the first?
Generally speaking ROI for Internal Social Networking & Collaboration falls in these categories:
Begin by identifying important ROI metrics for your company. Then select key departments or users that will provide breathe and depth to your launch. These are groups who have great visibility (if they get on board key people will notice) and a high socialization factor (if they can do it so can we). Make sure that you are clear on why you have selected each group. Ensure that you have each groups buy-in and support. Identify key metrics to monitor all groups collectively and some groups specifically. These groups must be trained, nurtured, supported, followed, documented, and socialized. Internal advocates can help train groups so that training cost are minimized. These advocates will prove helpful in viral spread as well as product direction.
Beyond providing ROI these groups will highlight bottlenecks, improve management, and bring a new level of solidarity to any company. Given the right implementation, social media and collaboration will become as indispensible as email.
Check back next week as we move to designing your internal / external social networking universe.
Noreen Poli is product manager and consultant at Ready, Set, Go Social! Her projects range from award winning methodologies to end-to-end mobile gamified applications. Her background in product management is enhanced by experience in user research, analytics, human behavior, and social giving her a unique skill-set custom made for this era of realtime analytics and personalized products.