I’ve recently posted in the Franchise Executives group on LinkedIn with the discussion question, “Why are CEOs and other top executives [still] not buying in to Social Media.” I’ve included a few of the responses below. Please share your thoughts and perspective as well…
Social media is certainly a primary means of communication that has quickly become a fundamental requirement to businesses just like the telephone, the website, or email. You could choose not to use any of those communication methods too, but it would be a brave person that tries to succeed without them. As a forward-thinking, open minded executive, how can you embrace social media in all of its glory to enhance your brand perception and be more effective in your leadership role?
“Social media is a good CRM tool for customers that are on it. Like any marketing tool it’s also demographic specific on the users. Also there’s the negative side of Social Media when a company cannot control it. Remember the Australian Subway franchise incident when a customer measured and posted a foot long sandwich on their Facebook page which wasn’t exactly a 12 inches long?”
“Sounds like I am preaching to the choir here, but here is my thought. We work with a few large franchisors. The difficulty they run into with social business generally falls into two distinct categories. 1. Brand protection. and 2. Return on investment. Things have changed, and continue to change every day as it relates to social. The measurement seen as success by a community manager vs. a CEO are vastly different. While likes and followers can, at times be a legitimate key performance indicator, the “C-Suite” is saying “show me the money” and “protect our brand identity”. There are options, and they get better everyday. The things we are able to deliver to our franchise clients today vs. 2 years ago would have been unthinkable. We can now control the brand pages on Facebook from one central location for an unlimited number of Facebook pages. We can change images, push offers to all pages at once, create and deploy tabs, etc. This removes the risk of brand sabotage by well meaning franchisees, yet still allows them to have a local Facebook presence. It took a lot of time and resource to develop, but we couldn’t have even imagined doing it two years ago. Funny thing is, I came to this exact group and asked in an open forum if there was anyone that would like to take a look and give feedback. Do you know how many replies I got? 0. Yep, ZERO. See, most folks don’t get it, or don’t yet understand the value. Even those who are commenting in this thread. 🙂 In reference to ROI – Another area with drastic change. The analytics technology is available now to measure all the way from a specific Tweet, Facebook, or LinkedIn post, clear to the web call to action. This shows a specific and clear path to purchase, or action, aka, a proven result. This is what the “C-Suite” wants to see. We do this every day. Its not magic, it is hard work and using the right approach. And yes, content wins and will continue to. But – Context trumps content all day long.”
“In addition to all the offers you can put to your audience we now offer a product that enables our Franchisees to push instant feedback back to the owner and the sites so that the people who really love the franchisee can share that more readily. This advocacy is a far more compelling tribute to the hard work franchisees offer to keep their clients happy! If you have a veracious appetite for growth you can get it in these channels.”
“CEO’s, other than the disruptors, like their position and want to protect their status. New ideas especially as it pertains to the increasing accelerating world of social media are threatening to those who don’t embrace and encourage leadership @ all levels within the organization. Top down is “OLD School.” Embracing existing media vehicles is “OLD School.” By the time I complete this comment 10 new social media ideas will have been hatched somewhere in the world, and it doesn’t have to be Silicon Valley!”