It was only when Business Week tweeted its article on business schools getting all a-twitter about social media that I found out that LBS is about to launch its own social media elective, which kind of proves the point that LBS should be launching a social media elective.

Despite being entirely unqualified to do so, I predict that social media will become fundamental to the running of any business within a few years (or at least any business that requires communication between two or more people, which, in my opinion, is just about any business).  Why is that? Because, like it or not, Web 2.0 communications is easier, faster and cheaper than any of the media it’s up against. The volume of objections to using the likes of Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn for business has been all but drowned out by the clamour to be the first to know which NOTW staffer will be next on the chopping board, to push job specs out to ever-wider audiences and to publicly scold BoJo for not heading back to his precious capital in time to grab the limelight from disaffected youth exercising their human rights to Nikes and iPad 2s.

More importantly, the world of social media is evolving faster than that of any other medium, so if you’re not convinced that this is the best way to communicate, you soon will be. Google has already spent $585million on developing Google Plus (its own social network), while the Royal Mail’s annual budget is conspicuously lacking a half a billion ‘get more people to send letters campaign’.

So where should business managers be looking if they are shopping for social strategies? I’ve dug out a few ideas from the vault at the B2B Guide to Social Media.

* To communicate with the public, think Twitter, Facebook and blogs.

* If you’re looking to speak to other businesses, try LinkedIn, Twitter and company blogs. 

* For engaging with your own employees, look at Yammer, Jive or industry-specific networks, such as RCEuro for the recruitment sector.  

* If you want to build links to your website, consider article marketing on the likes of eZineArticles and GoArticles. 

* To teach and learn, try YouTube. 

* For getting bums on seats, experiment with Gowalla and Foursquare. 

* And to drive sales and generate leads using social media, look at Groupon.

3 Responses to “You heard it on Twitter first”

  1. Great post, it is surprising how quick social media has evolved and is changing the way businesses operate.

    As a marketer with a keen interest in social media, I have helped a few businesses increase their customer loyalty and communication by using Twitter and Facebook, I feel it is the way forward.

    Obviously it is required to be smart with how you use the social media outlet and of course ensure it is relevant to your target group be that customers or clients.

    Many thanks once more for a great post.

  2. avatar Chris Kelsey says:

    I have just rolled out Chatter for (similar to Yammer but sits on top of a CRM sales system) at my company and in some areas it’s had a very enthusiastic response. Marketing have loved it and create groups for everything from team chat to product development. Sales are a little slower on the uptake, worried that it will add to their email workload. After various requests we have also rolled it out to many parts of the business who weren’t supposed to be within scope, but are keen to utilise it.

    Interestingly the majority of the comments are within private groups as people are unsure about posting comments that the whole company can see…

  3. avatar Roshni says:

    Pinterest has been getting a lot of interest lately driving retail.