I had a discussion today with a few colleagues in a conversation hosted by VICS.org and in that conversation we talked about how organizations can use “social media” and “social networking” to help get their message out. I think we can all agree that what we are doing is important. If it wasn’t I would hope we aren’t doing it. But sadly, we are not always able to share that important work with others.
After giving it some brief thought, and observing how others use social media, here are some of my “guidelines for social engagement.”
1. Share content When you want to share what you are doing, don’t be vague. I would rather read “Great meeting–discussed new ways of doing X. Check it out (insert link here)” than, say “Just left a great meeting with X Corp. Lots of good stuff.” If it was good, and worth sharing in social media, then by all means–share!
2. Include links! I alluded to it above in my example. If you have more information, then share it! Link to the article, or the website, or the document you created if it is available on the internet. Let others see what you are offering!
3. Leverage searchable actions Like #hashtags Okay, so this one seems mostly twitter oriented. But it’s critical. Hashtags are a way to reach people who are not following you, but are following a topic. By reaching these people who share an interest you at least connect on that level, and may even find new friends and followers! So, when attending a conference, or talking about your organization, use the appropriate hashtags. For instance, if you attend the CSCMP conference in 2011, check and see if they are suggesting a hashtag like #CSCMP11 and follow it, and when you are trying to share content, or events at the conference, include the tag. For example “We are hosting a #tweetmeet at the DancingBallroom at 9PM, open to all #CSCMP11”
4. Self Censor! Above all, if you are using a “business” social media tool limit what you share. It’s fine to share content and even ocassionally what is happening in your life, but stay on point. As John C. Dvorak often points out–I don’t want to know that you just ate a Cheese sandwich. At least not usually. That said, certainly there are times and places for personal engagement, and if you are comfortable sharing more then by all means, create a personal account, and share away!
What other guidelines would you recommend for Supply Chain engagement in Social Media? Share here, or tweet me your thoughts! You can find me on twitter as @SCMProfessor