Who should “own” social media at your firm? The Marketing department? The firm’s Public Relations Agency? The IT Department? Everyone? The answer will vary depending on the size of your company, resources available, culture, and social media goals.
For many companies, social media is owned by various departments with little regulation or coordination. Others prefer a single point of contact. Let’s examine the options.
- Wildcatting – In this approach, no single department or individual is responsible for social media. This “just do it” attitude could be error prone but is fleet of foot.
- Centralized – This headquarters design designates a single individual or department to direct and implement all social activities. Arguably, this lends itself to a command and control culture with strict policies. An obvious benefit is brand consistency.
- Committee – Here a blended organization manages and implements social media. A centralized team (such as representatives from marketing, IT, and product management) helps direct various other departments.
Whichever route is taken it is advisable to have a social media plan. This way the firm’s employees will have a clear idea about what is approved behavior and what isn’t on a social media site. These rules should not be so stringent as to prevent or truncate communication between a company’s employees and their customers, instead it should be a set of guidelines about how to deal with different situations and about how to promote the company’s brand.
John Bradley Jackson
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