Friday, August 27, 2010

I dont care what you want to hear!

Sometimes when I look at a website, read a status or check out an article and I think to myself wow, they have a lot to say but the really dont care about what we want to hear or what we care about.

For example, my blog was started for me to have a voice, think through some thoughts and just share some of my ideas.  I am not looking to build up a huge following, become famous or tailor to what my audience wants (of course that assumes I have an audience at all). I write my blog posts so that I can process a thought from start to finish. By putting my thoughts into words online and publishing them publicly I am forcing myself to make a statement and allow people to react (whether that is bad or good reactions). Some of my posts people have actually enjoyed and shared.  Others I enjoyed a lot and no one seemed to care.

The danger that I see here though is when this attitude or thought process crosses over to an organization, company or any other website that is driving toward a goal.

This blog is for fun and sharing, there is no mission to be met or sales to be made.

But when you are planning your website, social media, emails or whatever communication you are working on, is your thought process too focused on what you want to say? Well you might just be telling your audience that you dont care what they want to hear.

I'm just sayin.....

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Facebook Comments Again

I was excited that John Hayden shared our YMCA's comment escalation flow chart on his blog! It seems that many people can identify with it.

Here is John's post:

Here is a quote that I liked the most from his post:
Five reasons why a decision flow-chart makes sense
  1. Scalability – Staff can be brought into the social media workflow quicker with simple directions.
  2. Consistency - A simple response policy means that you’ll more likely respond as one voice, instead of many disjointed voices.
  3. Alignment - You can ensure that tactical responses on social media aligns with your over-arching business goals.
  4. Speed - The quicker foot-soldiers understand protocol, the quicker comments get responded to.
  5. Smarts - Granting the ability for staff to make decision on how to respond means that legal council can spend time on genuine legal issues.

I will be running a training this week for about 45 Facebook authors for the 20 or so pages that we will be launching on Aug 23. John Haydon's points really made me think through how I was going to convey the importance of replying to comments to our authors. I need to be more deliberate about explaining that there is no silver bullet to replying, but you need to have a plan. You cant just wing it, especially when there are multiple authors and you are replying on behalf of the organization.

"We already know what some of the comments are going to be from some of our members. We already see them in comment cards, email, phone calls, conversations, etc. So how can we be ready to reply to those?" That remark came up during a recent planning meeting. And it is true, we will get some of the same comments. My thought is, you would respond in the same way as when you received the comments in the other means, except maybe look for some brevity and give a way to follow up.

One of the biggest push backs we get from our staff is that they are already so busy that how are they going to fit in yet another task to reply to comments.  That is why we really need this structure to help them respond quickly, professionally and confidently.

Thanks for the mention John and for the extra inspiration to keep thinking this through.