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Integrating Social Media into a Web Content Strategy : Comments

By Britt Parrott

June 24, 2008

Comments

KK

June 25, 2008 2:49 PM

Could you please give some examples in the way of urls (?) to illustrate how a small company or department could take the information that is gathered after a media audit and make the transformation into a social media solution? Thanks-KK

Britt

June 25, 2008 3:23 PM

For two former clients who both viewed a blog as something extra that they didn’t have time for, I found a way to get them started with social media by fulfilling a need. One client needed an easy way to update the news section of their site. The other was an HR department that was tired of waiting for their jobs to be posted to the site. For both, I used blogs to handle their needs and explained the benefits (RSS feeds, ability to turn on comments if needed, etc.) without referring to it as blogging.

They both became comfortable with the tools and increasingly went on to become advocates. I don’t have URLs to share since both of those sites have been redesigned (one good, one bad) but will try to find examples that I can post.

One trend I don’t like is that many companies have added Blog as a top-level navigational choice to their sites. I would rather see the tool incorporated into existing sections of the site, or, at the least, call it something other than Blog. There seem to be more examples of that than there are of well done integrations.

Britt

June 25, 2008 3:40 PM

One URL I can share is a site I set up for a small business owner. I used Wordpress as a CMS and did not use the blog functionality until the owner discovered he was going to China. We added the blog (called China Updates) so he could stay in contact with his clients. It’s at www.pdxacu.com.

Philipp Sauber

June 26, 2008 1:30 PM

Thanks for your post, very interesting.
You are mentioning, that a blog should be part of the existing website.
Why not setting up a knowledge base outside your company’s website, building up reputation and a network and then transferring your possible clients, after having them convinced that you are a capacity in a certain feed, to your website?
I have the feeling that if you try to gain the trust of people, who might become new clients in the future, on a website that has eventually the purpose of sell something, it’s simply more difficult than on an independent platform.

Britt

June 26, 2008 3:17 PM

Philipp, I’m not necessarily saying a blog should be part of an existing website but that it might be a better tool for sections of an existing website and should not be tacked on as a blog for the sake of saying you have a blog.

Any knowledge base set up outside of a company’s website should be transparent and not made to look like a community that supports your company. But, having said that, I don’t see any purpose in setting up something outside of your website with the idea of transferring those people to something similar on your own website at a later date.

It is important to see what communities exist and not duplicate any efforts already in place. It is far easier to become active in an existing community (by stating who you are) than to build a new community. For example, you could join getsatisfaction.com instead of building your own support forum, which is a great opportunity for smaller businesses.

John Faulds

June 26, 2008 4:21 PM

Hi Britt, a bit off-topic but the sidebar of the China Updates section of the site you linked to is out of position in the latest version of Opera.

Lou Storiale

June 27, 2008 11:48 AM

Great article. Addresses the exact organizational environment that I’m currently working in, Nonprofit. Nonprofits are very cautious, to the point of paranoia, about adding new technology to their websites.

We have done some things internally with blogging, just not calling it a blog – but rather a CMS for some parts of our site and a few more to come.

Britt

June 27, 2008 8:13 PM

Lou, a big part of my motivation for writing the article was the frustration I had working with nonprofits (and some for profits as well) who would have benefited the most from embracing social media. Fear of negative comments and losing control of their message was the biggest stumbling block.

Philipp Sauber

June 29, 2008 12:12 PM

@ Britt, thanks, will keep on trying to use all the social media tools, although we are still quite a bit behind the US here in Europe.

Jaki Levy

June 30, 2008 6:23 PM

@ Britt – thanks for putting this together – it definitely covers what many consultants and artists have been thinking about – it’s definitely not about the tech, but what the tech provides – new paradigms, models, and opportunities to share work and ideas.

many organizations i work with are scared of losing control of messaging – to temporarily work around this, i suggest they setup a temporary site – outside of their own domain, to test things out and begin getting their feet wet.

it’s actually worked for the hesitant ones, but definitely not a permanent solution. for other hesitant clients, i’ve set up blogs and then later integrated the blog into their “main” site.

i am hoping the the thinking this article provides might help me avoid setting up these temporary solutions and move towards setting up more sustainable solutions.

jenny Orr

July 4, 2008 3:34 AM

I found your article rather interesting and a lot of your points ring true. The primary mistake with adopting a new trend such as social media is doing it for the sake of it to be seen doing it without first addressing the company’s objectives to make sure they know what they want out of it.

http://facevaluebook.blogspot.com/ has some posts that further discuss the issues of social media and its implications for marketing if you’re interested :)

Pankaj

July 7, 2008 6:39 AM

great article. lets see where the debate of “social media for enterprises” heads. for me it is part of enterprises’ efforts to encourage informal and “non work” behavior in organizations.

Jed Sundwall

July 23, 2008 11:20 AM

Excellent article. This is going to inform a lot of my work.

Tiff Fehr

July 23, 2008 3:23 PM

Closing down comments due to spam. Feel free to contact the author directly to continue the conversation.

Sorry, comments are closed.

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