After nearly nine years in the social space, through all of the changes, adoptions, challenges and transformations, I’ve survived it all and lived to tell you that social media is not scalable.
You can scale a lot of things:
Scaling up requires organizational prowess, bigger budgets and changes in technology. You can buy audiences and make your content reach almost everyone in the world who is connected to the Internet.
This fact leads us to the other social media related things you can’t scale:
Just look around you. Everyone and their brother is touting social media as THE place you have to be. Why? Because it’s a buzzword and that means bankable coin.
Unfortunately, it’s brought an influx of dubious products, the likes of which seem to have no limit. It’s not very hard to find a vendor to “do social media” for you at a bargain price of $500/month or less. If that’s your idea of social media, then save your money.
A true social media success story for any company requires setting up systems that keep the “human factor” in the equation.
When Larry Page and Sergey Brin first started Google after moving out of their dorm room at Stanford, they had one philosophy — put smart, talented, passionate people in a room together, and something great is bound to happen.
Realistically speaking, business growth and performance require scaling up. The key is to think big and act bold.
Organizations are made up of people, inside and outside the org-chart. Regardless of imposed structure, these people work in communities and ultimately they contribute according to the social rules they have established. Therefore, every growth plan regardless of its logical excellence relies on engagement, support, and contribution, or it will fail.
If you’re looking for scalable, repeatable and a current social media curriculum to support long-term social business goals, it doesn’t get more scalable than employee advocacy.
I’ve witnessed employee advocacy teams that share content (tweets, Instagram, Facebook) through their own lens of the world and often give “expert” advice on a myriad of customer questions. This practice lets customers see all the facets of a company’s culture and “peek behind the curtain,” which advances trust.
Your team could mean a handful of employees or even your entire organization. The program requires planning, guidance and tweaks to include content creation in their job duties and compensation.
There are usually several questions that follow the introduction of this idea:
These questions frequently come up no matter where or to whom I’m talking to. The answer is straight forward: Hire good people, train them, and empower them to succeed.
To think big and act bold is courageous. In today’s uncertain market, courage is required.
And if your employees aren’t your biggest advocates, you’ve got much bigger problems than social media.