It's Time to Define the Social Business Relationship

Deirdre Walsh
Deirdre Walsh Sr. Social Strategist, Jive Software

Posted on September 13th 2012

It's Time to Define the Social Business Relationship

Community and social media managers at organizations large and small are struggling with how to increase adoption of social business technologies. 

While there are no formal rules for success, I have compiled the following 7 Pillars of Social Business Success for Marketing based on my experience in the trenches. By implementing or adjusting your strategy to fit the following framework, I truly believe you will draw others in at all levels of the enterprise and throughout the ecosystem 

Just remember, a complete social business transformation can take a long time, but having a strong strategy will ensure you are focusing on the activities that will have the largest ROI.

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I'll be doing a 8 post blog series on these pillars and would love for you to chime-in throughout with questions, comments and general feedback.  So, let's dive in. 

Pillar 1: Define

Like any good marketer, the first step is to clearly identify your Target Audience.  For Jive's social strategy, we are always trying to connect withpassionate, credible, and connected individuals both inside and outside the organization.


Next, it's key to align social business objectives with REAL business goals and set measurable targets for them.  At Jive, we focus on the following social business goals:

  • Consistent social activity. Measured by outbound communications on blogs, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn, etc.
  • Increase awareness.  Measured by increase in confirmed and potential social impressions, community traffic, etc.  Confirmed impressions include data like YouTube video and channel views, while potential impressions include information about Twitter @mention and RT audience size.
  • Increase reach. Measured by current social network size (e.g., fans, followers, community members, subscribers)
  • Increase social engagement. Measured by total number of social interactions (e.g., RTs, likes, clicks, comments)
  • Drive leads and software trials. Measured by actual number of leads and trials resulting directly from social activities.
  • Foster loyalty and advocacy. Measured by social sharing by employees and current customers as well as number of users in the official Jive Champions program.


Finally, it's easy to get caught-up in the "what's in it for me?"  Therefore, for any new social business project, we always ask "what does the audience get?"  By participating in things like reading this blog, we hope customers, prospects, influencers, and employees get:

  • latest news and information
  • insider views into the company
  • proficient via best practice sharing
  • connected to like-minded people
  • voice heard inside and outside the organization
  • recognized for great work, promoted as thought-leaders (have you seen the REAL Office Heroes series?) 

Fellow marketers, what are your defining steps? What business objectives are you trying to accomplish through social?


Deirdre Walsh

Deirdre Walsh

Sr. Social Strategist, Jive Software

@deirdrewalsh is an award-winning, social business program manager with a decade of digital media, integrated marketing, online community, corporate communications, and program development experience. Currently, she is the Sr. Social Strategist for Jive Software, which brings the innovation of the consumer web to the enterprise. She has been published in several outlets, including The Wall Street Journal, and has been a featured speaker at events like SXSW. In 2006, Deirdre launched the National Instruments social business program, which measurably impacted customer loyalty, marketing and product development. Prior to NI, Deirdre specialized in public relations for Hewlett-Packard, Allstate and the Texas Senate. Deirdre graduated with a bachelor of science in public relations and minors in business and English from The University of Texas.

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