Social Media in the Enterprise

by Fred von Graf on September 14, 2009

Social Media in the Enterprise with Michelle Gorel of Avnet.

To provide the best possible consulting and speaking services I use a process of continuous improvement.  Part of this process included meeting with industry leaders to learn from their experiences and the challenges.  Sometimes I’ll capture these discussions to share with you, like this great talk I had with Michelle Gorel (the VP of Public Relations for Avnet, Inc).  I’d been in the Avnet offices the previous week and got a chance to sit down with Michelle to discuss their current Social Media strategy, some of the challenges and learnings around implementing Social Media in their Enterprise.  As a result of these talks we set up a time to record some of the highlights to share with you.

I really appreciate how open Michelle is in sharing Avnet’s use of Social Media and willingness to share key learnings.  Michelle and I agree on many aspects of implementing Social Media in an Enterprise and I especially like how realistic she is about setting longer term goals around the use of Social Media.  Sure Avnet has the same challenges that most large corporations face when implementing Social Media, and with leadership from people like Michelle they are in good hands.

Here are the topics covered in this discussion:

  • How did you convince the Executive Team that Social Media was the right thing to do?
  • Are you finding that you still need to educate people about Social Media?
  • How do you feel your policies is for Social Media? Is it finalized or a work in progress?
  • How do you use Social Media internal to the Enterprise?
  • What are some of the key learning you’d like to share with others?
  • Tell me how you integration Social Media in to your Public Relations?
  • What did I miss?

Here’s an audio only version of the talk:

You can get a chance to see Michelle and some other very talented folks like my friend Jeff Moriarty talk about the use of Social Media at the joint Business Marketing Association and Arizona Technology Council – Marketing Technology Summit at the Biltmore on September 15th.  With over 50 vendors and 300+ attendees this will be a great event.  Plus I will be there all day so find me and say Hi!

I am fortunate in the fact that I get to consult with great clients about the use of Social Media and Technologies to improve their business.  I’d like to share a few key points that I use when helping clients implement their Social Media Strategy.  The first is to start with their business, marketing or communications plans and not to start by focusing on the tools.  Move from the business needs to the tools that meet the needs.  The second is to measure your success, be clear about what is important and how to measure it.  Third, be excellent at what you do, focus on your business and be the best you can.  Do you know what you do and how to do it well?  There’s obviously more to creating a comprehensive Social Media Strategy but I think the first two are essential and the last is needed for any business, Social Media Strategy or not.  What do you think?

What other questions would you like to see answered by leaders in the industry?

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