This paper is a book review of “The social media MBA in practice: an essential collection of inspirational case studies to influence your social media strategy” by Christer Holloman. This book is one of today’s best selling, given its analysis of comprehensive and details social media strategies currently in place in different organizations, making them the most admired brands of the time. The book also offers tactical advice to companies interested in using social media to re-image their interaction with all who engage with their brand. The book also covers cutting-edge strategic social media activities through the analysis of various businesses, including improvements in customer relationships, sales enhancement, and team building, among others. Holloman is a renowned author of online technology trend features for Sky News and a main speaker for corporations, teachers, and c-level managers’ audiences.
Review of Major Topics
This book is split into three parts in order to explore the successful usage of social media in different businesses. Each section covers the businesses in the modern business world that have used social media and emerged victorious. Set Up, Social Media Strategy, and Department of Social Media are the three areas. ADP Allianz, Cisco, Confused.com, Dell, Honda, Nokia, Sony Mobile, and Xerox were among the firms investigated.
Company Social Media includes enterprises whose organisational framework utilises social media as a good part of their day-to-day working. Nationwide Building Society, for example , uses a social media approach that actively promotes input from consumers. As a result , the company provided space for top management to buy sufficient shares, monitor the company while fostering customer loyalty , and increase customer engagement (Holloman, 2013). In addition , the social media for business set-up includes a centre of excellence for social media, as is the case in Cisco and Honda. Cisco uses social media to facilitate sharing best practices by its employees and practitioners through cross segment coordination. This encourages clients, staff, partners, shareholders and the public in the brand online (Holloman 2013).
The second group in the book was using social media strategy in companies with Nokia and LivingSocial being the two key examples. At Nokia social media play a significant part in encouraging customer loyalty and happiness by sharing positive experience with Nokia products and services. Consequently, the strategy increases faster and further spread word-of-mouth messages, expanding its customer base (Holloman, 2013). Also, LivingSocial an online bazaar that is consumer oriented focuses on using social media and business-to-business sales people to allow clients to purchase and share things to do in their city. Getting social in B2B has changed the buy-sell model at customer level primarily through sales people who respond to trends and shifting behaviors in ways that permit them to understand what is possible. As a result, the company manages to find the right audience for business-to-business customers.
Thirdly, Holloman identifies social media use through social by departments. In this case, the book analyses social media use in numerous organizational departments, including public relations and marketing, sales, human resources, customer services, innovation, and across departments. When used across departments, the book outlines the best examples to include MacMillan and F5. At MacMillan, social media use went beyond marketing to include assisting merging all its businesses into a single operating division using an internal structure comparable to Facebook where information sharing across company employees reduces time spent by employees searching for people or documents with subject expertise at the company. Using social media in the PR and marketing department, Holloman uses companies like Confused.com, Xerox, and Israel Foreign Office. At Confused.com, using social media improved brand awareness through PR while driving traffic to the website. As a result, the company has managed to enhance personal finance news using offline and websites to increase traffic to its website and gain tangible feedback inform of insurance quotes which has increased the company’s Return on Investment or ROI. In terms of innovation, PricewaterhouseCoopers’ crowdsourcing facilitates broadcasting of issues to assorted viewers through social media and concerted software solutions. As a result, the firm manages to gather innovative solutions to internal problems. Additionally, product development at Sony Mobile involves social media use to drive Quality control management while human resources application of social media is evident at HCL’s social for HR strategy. Holloman reveals that the use of social media is still evolving with future expected use in companies like Rentokil where social media anticipated use involves crisis management (Holloman, 2013).
Holloman book is offers eye opening information on the use of social media and leaves room for businesses to analyze their business environments, use the advice provided, and come up with innovative use of social media to increase their presence, offer significant customer, and HR services, become creative, and improve their Centre of excellence amongst other benefits. For practical usage of social media tools, well-informed businesses use additional tools to coordinate social media activities.
Marketing today has changed drastically given the presence of low cost social media tools that combine social interaction and technology with words. For the smart marketer, social media comes with low-cost budgets and introduces a powerful customer engagement tool. Consequently, businesses in quest of securing places in both the traditional and digital market place must hold a supple and well-managed existence in several social media tools like Google+, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Pinterest, and Reddit among others. The implication here is that in the digital era, traditional marketing methods need supplementation using social media marketing tools given that social media involves activities that primarily introduce content, images, and video sharing for reasons of marketing.
Social media marketing would be crucial to understand business trends, purchasing of products and services, entertainment, and learning in my personal life. This will be possible using mobile-based and internet-based tools. Social media is also a crucial tool for communication. I would use my Facebook or Twitter friends to understand the market or pass crucial information about the market’s products or services. Social media would be essential in effecting my decision especially in purchasing products based on what blogs or other review websites inform.
- Holloman, C. (2013). The social media MBA in practice : an essential collection of inspirational case studies to influence your social media strategy. United States: John Willey & Sons.