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Social Business is Not Everyone’s Business … Yet

By Joanne Jacobs

When social began creeping into the business, it started with marketing. It made sense in many ways as marketing is most closely aligned with the customer base – and more importantly – held budget that could be used for media. But as more and more discipline was established around social media, it began to look more like another business function – with metrics, KPIs, escalation paths and sometimes even revenue targets. This seemed to signal a shift in the positioning of “social”.

As a result, roles with “social media” in their titles began appearing across the enterprise, from customer support through communications to legal and compliance. And while we are seeing some fluidity in the positioning of “social business” roles, a recent report by Simply Measured shows that most social media related roles remain with the marketing team.

Moreover, when you combine the marketing and communications functions, it accounts for over 80% of “social business” roles.

There remain about 16% of roles that are scattered through the organisation – but almost all of those roles were started in the marketing / comms teams before they migrated.

So while there remains a view that “social is everybody’s business”, it clearly has not been formalised in most organisations. This will take time, and we can expect to see more decentralisation of social business as digital transformation programs gain momentum over the next few years.

One way to understand the trajectory of digital transformation and social business within your organisation is to conduct a self-assessment of your social business maturity. Once you have a sense of the gaps in your organisational maturity you can begin to plan, budget for, and transform your business with a clear direction and purpose.

And then, maybe, social business really may be “everyone’s business”.


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