By Barton Goldenberg
As promised in my previous blog post, I will be describing the second stage of my proven three-stage process in designing a Social Media strategy for creating successful Social Media communities: “Navigate”.
In the navigate stage of a Social Media strategy, the organization must:
- Select the Appropriate Social Media Software Vendor Tools
It is important to consider which tools are capable of delivering on an organization’s Social Media strategy. There are meaningful differences between these vendor’s applications regarding how easy it is to navigate through the community. There are also differences as whether their application provides the functionality desired by community members.
2.Define Process Flows
Process flow addresses the question: “Is navigation within the community intuitive to the user?” It should also answer “What process flows are built into the community’s navigation to ensure that community goals are met?” The navigation flow within the community should enable members to easily get answers to their questions. Members should also be motivated to become community evangelists.
I previously worked for a prominent publishing firm to create their Social Media strategy. Their Social Media goals were to increase awareness and revenue by driving prospects to a point of sale on their Website. Their goals were accomplished by setting up required navigation on their Social Media communities. The publishing firm used these two process flows:
- Hub & Spoke Flows – Each Social Media community was designed to help drive traffic to their Website where the visitor could access information pertaining to the book or an author and purchase the book.
- Clickstream Flows – The publishing company used clickstream flows to drive traffic from public Social Media Communities to their Website.
Unfortunately many organizations formulating a Social Media strategy overlook setting up meaningful process flows. As a result, a large number of Social Media communities have underperformed.
3. Create an Engagement Plan
The Community Engagement Plan is a critical document that describes how the organization will attract and keep members to the Social Media community. The plan includes promotion of the community on the organization’s Website homepage. It also involves sending emails concerning the Social Media community to customers and prospects. To help secure traffic, the Engagement Plan should contain links to the organization’s Social Media community from other online publications.
In my next post, I will discuss the last stage of my recommended three-stage process for designing a successful Social Media strategy: “Calibrate”.
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Barton Goldenberg, is the founder and president of ISM Inc., customer-centric strategists/implementers serving best-in-class organizations globally. As a CRM leader for 30 years, he was among the first three inductees in the CRM Hall of Fame. Recognized as a leading “customer-focused” author, his latest book, The Definitive Guide to Social CRM, is hailed as the roadmap for Social CRM success. Barton is a popular speaker on “maximizing customer relationships to gain market insights, customers and profits”. He is a long-term columnist for CRM Magazine and speaker for CRMevolution and frequently quoted in the media.