Digital Influence Weekly – The Fortune 500 Report Card


Since the rest of the world is getting ready for the holiday season and bypassing Thanksgiving, here are two Google+ gifts for you to try out. Google+ now allows you to send private messages more easily to users. Just go to their profile, and under their picture should be an option to send a message. Even more fun is their new ouTube integration. Notice a little YouTube logo in the top right? Scroll over it and type in something you want to watch. I’m not sure what it has to do with Google+, but it’s kind of fun.

And now, on to the Digital Influence Weekly…

Fellow Pierponter Clint Woods sent me an interesting Forbes article stating that Fortune 500 companies are using social media less these days. They referenced a study conducted by the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth, which shows companies leveling off their social networking. There are two things that ring through my head when I read this: 1) The first mentions of the death of the blogosphere from a while ago. I haven’t seen it die down so much as they get more focused. 2) The line, “The report of my death was an exaggeration,” from Mark Twain. 

The article mentions corporate silos getting in the way of managing social media. However, it could be that companies are getting smarter and more focused about using social media. Companies need to determine who is responsible for social media. Is it marketing? PR? Sales? The CEO? The answer to this is YES. All parties have a role to play in contributing to social media campaigns. But it takes time to gather all the intelligence and figure out a streamlined process that still allows for the most freedom for various departments to take advantage of engaged audiences. 

It’s also worth noting that there are still many companies who have not had the opportunity to plan for social media engagement. There are companies that began with a big splash and may have slowed down because they don’t need a big splash anymore for their purposes. They may have realized that they need to be on Facebook, but not Twitter. Success in social media is never the same for any company, nor should it be. A success is determined by definitive goals, such as: Make sure these media outlets are aware of us online, make sure our community partners utilize our social networks, make sure we have a place online to publicly receive and respond to customer complaints, etc. But businesses need to figure that out.

Companies are looking for their place in the social media world and that takes time as well as stepping back every so often.

Have a great weekend!