A recent report from InSites Consulting took a deeper look at the differences between American and European companies when it comes to social media in the enterprise. Where some stats weren’t a surprise at all (American companies are quicker to adopt and experiment with social strategies/tactics than European companies), others flew under the radar a bit and were even a little surprising.
The stat that jumped out at me, and what I want to bring to the surface today, is that while American companies are quick to jump in and play around with social tactics and strategies, European companies think harder about their adoption and work to integrate those processes at the same time. That integration involves bringing social media into the company culture and embedding social methodologies into company processes, including marketing, product development, customer service, employee communication and more. Sound familiar?
There have been others that have talked about Social Business integration improving innovation and experimentation, but this research brings up an interesting question: is it better to be quick to experiment or to take your time and truly integrate Social Business into your culture? What are the benefits of each approach?
Honestly, I wish I could sit here and tell you I had a definitive answer to those questions, but I don’t. The cop out answer would be to say that you have to have a perfect balance of both (and honestly, you do), but there are definite benefits to each approach:
- Experimentation allows you to lead the pack in your clients’ minds.
- Integration allows you to fully realize how social business will influence and drive your future actions.
- Experimentation gives you a leg up on what works and what doesn’t.
- Integration allows you to build upon others’ successful strategies.
- Experimentation gives you a greater chance to show up on a Mashable or Techcrunch.
- Integration allays the risk of you showing up on one of those sites because of an unknown faux pas.
Which do you think is better: Slow Integration or Early Experimentation? Why is that? Should the conversation not even be divided – people should simply strive for that perfect balance? What would that look like?
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