How Effective Is Your Corporate Social Media Strategy?

29 10 2013

Where do you fit on the social media continuum?  Many folks have some friends on Facebook (1.1 billion users), an incomplete profile on LinkedIn (240 million users), a bunch of views on Youtube (1 billion unique users/month) and that is about it.  While many folks don’t tweet (555 million users) regularly, ALL of us have purchased a ton of things online.  Fewer of us write checks than ever before and many use our “phone” to transact financial business and get answers to a myriad of questions.  Regardless of where you are personally on social media and how you measure your activity today compared to five years ago, your findings will be not be shocking.  We have all made individual moves forward.  So what about your corporate plan?  What moves has your Eye Cubed organization made or is preparing to make?

social-media-seo-logos

My company, PFP, started our LinkedIn Group “Where Your Credit Union Goes To Grow” in March, 2013 and the group consistently grows each month.  When you search Groups in LinkedIn under “Credit Union”, we are currently ranked #28!  That is a good start to a very robust plan.   Our purpose is to become national thought leaders and value generators for the credit union industry.  We are definitely on the best platform.  Nothing compares to LinkedIn to achieve the goal of B to B networking.

You cannot prove you can swim when you only have your foot in the water!

We have only just begun.  It is fair to say that our initial foray into social media has merely taken us out of the gate and represents a small fraction of our overall strategy.  When you combine our B to B and B to C strategies, we will be managing ten social media pages via five platforms in 2014.  We have a ton of work to do to build our community and provide meaningful value.

This aint no “Field Of Dreams”…. For everyone to come, we have to do more than just “Build it”!

There are three core competencies needed to have a successful social media game plan:

  • Content Acquisition
  • Marketing/ Dissemination
  • Community Acquisition

Most organizations are unwilling to excel at all three consistently over a long period of time.  If one of the above is ignored, the overall initiative will be off balance and will miss the mark.

  • It takes time to provide meaningful content.
  • It requires work to develop original thought.
  • It takes diligence to demonstrate effective distribution.
  • It takes effort to build a growing network.

You need “numbers” to play the numbers game!        

We need to get comfortable with the fact that “small” percentages of our network will see our efforts and a “smaller” percentage will act on it.  The good news is that those numbers are relative and become “big” when our social media community is “big”.  Like any marketing and sales strategy, metrics drive our activity.  As we develop a track record of actions and measurable results, we will improve the top line and bottom line by focusing on the activities that drive our metrics beyond our targets.

We are building an asset, not buying a lottery ticket.  Eye Cubed companies invest the time necessary to build by executing a sound strategy.  While social media is not a new concept to anyone, for most companies, infusing an effective plan into the culture is pure innovation and fits neatly into the Eye Cubed philosophies presented in the prior posts.

Eye-Cubed leaders need:

  • Vision to feel the Inspiration
  • Vision to see the Innovation
  • Vision to execute the Implementation
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Why You Should Act (in social media) Like The Top 0.5%?

9 07 2013

Since Sept 6, 2012, I have been a fully engaged power user in LinkedIn, Twitter and WordPress.  Having posted hundreds of updates on LinkedIn, tweeted 1500+ tweets and written 53 blog posts, I was asked two questions last night:

social-media-guru

  1. Why are you doing this?
  2. Are you getting anything out of your efforts?

I knew I had his attention for about 15 seconds yet my answer was much longer than that.  As a point of reference, out of the five men sitting around the small table having a discussion, three of them read my work regularly.  That’s 60%!  (including me….see how numbers can play tricks on perception?)  I started to answer him but tailed off as he drifted to another conversation.  So I challenged myself to introduce the question and answer it over the next 325 words. (I try to keep my posts below 500 words…now I only have 297 words left). 

Why am I doing this? (And why you should be inspired to do it as well)

  • Thought Leader:

I want to be more than a legend in my own mind!  I need credibility.  My consistent presence and quality content will do just that.  If it is truly “good stuff” (you will be the judge of that), I will be looked at as the thought leader I wish to become.

  •  Value Generator to enhance my company’s image to clients and prospects:

We are reminded constantly that without value, we have no chance for business continuity.  CEOs and “C” level executives want to be engaged and I refuse to be considered a “vendor” to our client-partners.  Intellectual discussions about business challenges (coupled with solutions) bring the value for which I envision.  My presence on the web addressing critical Eye-Cubed issues reinforces the value added.

  • I’m more than an “owner”or SVP of PFP:

I have had a plethora of experiences since 1996.  However, keeping the lessons within my company limits the audience.  Others can gain perspective from my path.   Through speaking, writing and consulting, I can build my impact and influence. 

Am I getting results? (What is in it for you too?)

  • Thought Leader:

New opportunities have been uncovered as my reputation builds. 

  1. Radio Interview on implementing change. 
  2. Corporate Briefing interview on Collaboration with a strategic partner. 
  3. Speaking engagements to industry leaders on succession, growth and innovation
  • Value Generator:

At a high level meeting with one of our top three clients, a senior executive introduced herself to me and said: “Yes, we have connected on LinkedIn.  I read your blog.  It is good.  I get a lot of stuff thrown my way but I like your work.  I read it.”  We then talked about strategy and the future.  They wanted to know how PFP can help them reach their goals as an organization.

I went into this project with a long-term view and did not expect to have such measurable results so soon.  Businesses are evolving and the Eye-Cubed leadership needed to excel could not be more pronounced.  With the goal of continuing to add value every day, Eye push forward!  The results speak for themselves.





Leadership As The Cornerstone of Inspiration

19 03 2013

To Lead!  To inspire others!  To motivate others!  To guide others!

Inspire

Without the ability to lead, we would never have an opportunity to inspire and excel as an Eye-Cubed-U graduate.  And as we learned in the post “Leadership, The Prerequisite Of Inspiration”, we strive to achieve the status of “You da man!/wo-man! Leadership”.  Once achieved, we have the ability to inspire others throughout our lives.  The life cycles we move through present the forum to develop ones leadership quotient and build our inspirational platform.  Have you taken advantage of those moments or allowed them to pass by without personal growth and the necessary experience to be the inspirational force to others in your life?

Who to lead/inspire?

  • Friends
  • Classmates
  • Co-workers
  • Spouse
  • Children
  • Employees
  • Community
  • Executives
  • Partners
  • Parents

The potential world in which you inspire grows over time.  Ultimately, when you reach the pinnacle of leadership, you will experience a time period when inspiration and leadership will simultaneously be needed from you to most, if not all, of the groups listed above.  Imagine the day when your inspirational world is complete.  This responsibility can be considered a burden or an honor.  It could be overwhelming or personally “inspiring”.  People either run from it or sprint to it.  Each individual handles this reality differently (possesses different levels of leadership quotient) and as a result, rises to meet varying portions of the inspirational needs of each subset.

Leadership lighthouse

I believe I am there today.  I am at a special point in my life.  And I consider this an honor, a challenge and a responsibility.  While everyone needs inspiration, it can never be accomplished using a cookie-cutter approach.  Like management, coaching and leadership, inspiration is a very personal emotion.  My children are inspired very differently compared to my partners.  The executives working with me in PFP gain their inspirational infusion in a significantly unique way compared to my employees.  And I realize, over the past few years, my parents look towards me for inspiration as well.  They too have special trigger-points that push them, motivate them and ultimately inspire them.  My leadership quotient is at a particular high point in my because I am capable of providing inspiration in a flexible manner based on my targeted group or individual.

I recognize that leadership and athleticism have something in common.  To be truly great, one needs to practice.  To maximize ones potential, one must take full advantage of every opportunity to gain experience, test newfound skills and challenge ones competitive thirst to be the best and “win”.  While the development period is definable, so too is the peak of athleticism and leadership.  There is a beginning, middle and end.

  1. Your children will not always need the same type of inspiration and leadership.
  2. Your community will develop new leaders over time as your position moves from being the active leader to the respected “elder statesman”.
  3. Your organization must execute succession planning and develop a new generation of leaders to inspire others in order to perpetuate corporate greatness.

However, this is not a story of sadness and futility.  It is never time to put oneself out to pasture and wait.  Rather, I propose two reactions.  The first is to “be in the moment” of leadership and truly inspire others when given the opportunity.  If you have the position as inspirational leader, take full advantage.   Second, and most importantly, personally measure and analyze your inspirational world.  Is there a group or sub-group you should be inspiring and leading yet you are not effective in that pursuit today?  Can you add to your world and begin inspiring others?

LeadershipOpportunitiesForGrowth

As of September 5th, 2012, I have decided to do just that.  If I possess the skill and qualification to be inspirational and lead others, my world has broadened to include an ever-widening network on LinkedIn, Twitter and WordPress.  Other social networks will be explored and the inspiration I deliver will spread over the worldwide web in a way I had never imagined.  I will inspire others online as well as face-to-face in presentations, Keynote addresses and all day experiences.  I will not stop broadening my network.

Perhaps the inspiration and leadership lifecycle has lengthened.  Join me on the path.  Inspire me to continue in Eye-Cubed style.  Lead me as I attempt to lead others.





Invaluable Perspectives from Keynote Interview of David J. Sussman, Esq. CLU

22 01 2013

Do not miss Ronald Allen’s live keynote interview of David Susman, Esq. CLU, SVP of PFP and President of Eye-Cubed-U, LLC

Gain perspectives on:  Succession, Corporate Value, Leadership, Partnership, Change, Inspiration, Innovation, Family Businesses and more.  The President and innovator of Eye-Cubed-U, LLC shares his experiences and philosophies that spurred the formation of a new wave of corporate language and culture.

Click Here and listen live!  It really is a fantastic interview.  Thank you.

Tune In

Hear about these wonderful people:

Understand:

  • The culture of the credit union industry
  • Selling to the credit union industry
  • Adding value to B to B clients
  • Innovating the Insurance Industry

Perspectives on how to become a:

  • Consultant
  • Speaker
  • Keynote Speaker
  • Presenter
  • Thought Leader

Hear advice on:

Books mentioned in the interview:

Companies mentioned by David Sussman and Ronald Allen: