On Nov. 19, I participated in a webinar hosted by Social Media Today entitled Socially Driven Collaboration: How Social Business Is Changing the Role of Marketing and IT. As the person responsible for marketing and communications for my organization, I’m interested in any opportunity to learn about trends and best practices related to my field. And, as our organization is incorporating social media more into its communications and business models, I thought this webinar would be a worthwhile experience.
The webinar explored the fact that as more companies are embracing social business activities (e.g. using social technologies to listen, respond, gather feedback and connect with customers and partners), marketing and IT departments are having to work together to achieve social business goals. The webinar focused on how to achieve better alignment between the marketing and IT departments as collaboration improves all outputs/outcomes. The webinar offered five tips for better collaboration:
- Get C-suite buy-in for shared goals.
- Understand your peer’s perspective. Understand the needs and offerings of each group.
- Be the role model. Reach out to the other department. Make the first move to work together.
- Find meaningful metrics to measure your success. Collaboration can yield many benefits.
- Avoid tech mistakes by carefully choosing your tools.
The webinar was moderated by Paul Dunay, Global Vice President of Marketing for Maxymiser, and featured panellists Erika Jolly Brookes, Vice President of Product Strategy for Oracle, and Vanessa DiMauro, CEO of Leader Networks. The speakers and participants could all interact with each other through Go to Webinar or on Twitter using the hashtag #SMTLive. Many people, including me, were tweeting quotable quotes from the webinar or asking questions and tagging them with the hashtag. I was happy to see Vanessa DiMauro answer my question. As an organization without an IT department—we have one person on staff for basic support and to liaise with our IT consultants—and as an organization that has a number of small businesses as stakeholders, I wanted to know if the rise of social business was enough of a business case for convincing your CEO to build an IT department into the business plan. Vanessa responded that identifying a business process that could be enhanced or accelerated via social technologies could help make the case for an in-house IT department.
Through the webinar, I gained a better appreciation for our IT consultants and see how it’s important to keep them in the loop of our activities. The message that I took away is: “When marketing and IT collaborate, the results are stronger marketing messages and a reduction in operational costs.” The webinar left me thinking of how I could work more collaboratively with our IT consultants to select or develop tools that will help us become more socially enabled.
Social Media Today offers free, weekly webinars on a variety of topics related to social business. I find the topics relevant to my job, and as they take place over the lunch hour, they’re very convenient. You also get a copy of the presentation, which makes great reference material. I highly recommend these webinars and will be attending more in the future.
What free social business-based webinars have you come across and would recommend?