The Social Organisation
In their Quarterly Digital Briefing on Social Data (2011), Econsultancy created a four-stage model to help businesses become social organisations, showing how social media activity might grow from being ad hoc marketing to permeating the entire business. What would a social arts organisation look like, and to how would it behave?
The following table outlines Econsultancy’s Social Organisation model:
|Social as a tool||Social as a channel||Social as a platform||Social organisation|
|Main objective||Listen and reach – achieve a critical mass of audience||Participate and publicise – broadcast standard marketing via social media channels||Engage and capture – understand sentiment, measure engagement and drive purchase intent||Build and propagate – unveil patterns among interactions, deepen relationships|
|Systems and processes||No guidelines or policy||No consistent standards for engagement and facilitating interaction||Policy and guidelines formulated, dedicated roles. Social media performance dashboards||Fully integrated tools and systems, social media strategy in line with business objectives|
|Leadership and culture||Decentralised / distributed, experimental phase. No dedicated resources||‘Pockets’ of social media activity within departments, no department manages or co-ordinates efforts||One department controls all efforts; hierarchical structure||Cross-functional social media teams, collaborative culture. Co-ordinated use of data/findings|
|Customer experience||Directly addressing comments, reactive, often taken by surprise||Basic customer service via social channels, focus on sales||Social data in CRM. Social used as a lead generation and service channel||Seamless customer experience across all touch points. Loyal communities|
|Measurement||No measurement||Measuring direct ROI of social||Measuring total ROI of social||Use social to measure ROI of social and non-social channels||Use of insight||Basic listening, focus on reach/volume of brand mentions||Identifying influencers / advocates / detractors||Product and services development, cultivating relationships with influencers, building advocacy||Listening integrated with internal processes for change.|
It is worth noting that this was developed for the corporate sector, so the scale of return and investment is sizeable: 22% of the US companies surveyed worked for clients earning more than $1bn, and in Europe 46% for companies with revenues of more than £50m. In many instances, the people creating the integrated social dashboards were agencies, not lone marketing managers looking after physical and digital. While this scale of activity might seem unachievable at first glance, the underlying model can help arts organisations to integrate social thinking and practice into their organisational strategy and development.
Many arts and cultural organisations were “social” before digital communication was invented. The reason it’s so difficult to see the stage in a horseshoe theatre is because, in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, the main attraction was seeing – and being seen by – other members of the audience. Likewise, anyone who has spent an afternoon in the British Library will know that social dynamics are at play even in the quietest corner of the Reading Room. So how does the online experience differ?
The first difference is that organisations use social media to drive audience reach and engagement. Few social strategies serve a core audience; they aim to widen appeal and understanding, sell tickets and raise awareness. In this context, the meaning of ‘social’ is radically changed: no matter how popular a destination your organisation is, it is no longer the venue for the conversation. Instead, it’s part of a much wider conversation – and understanding how your content appears and functions in this wider milieu is an important first step to developing the confidence to behave as a genuinely social organisation.
Rachel Coldicutt will join Andrew Campbell to explore how these concepts impact on the cultural sector in London on 8 October 2013. Book your place at the high-level CultureHive Briefing now.