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Governing New “Brand” Account Creation

As mentioned in Chapter 2, “Defining Social Business Strategy and Planning,” the “bright and shiny” object of social media has caused a craze in many companies today and quite possibly yours, whereby hundreds of siloed teams create social media channels resulting in poor integration, disjointed content, and lackluster community management practices. And if you are the person who is driving this organizational change, you have to audit and potentially close down certain social media channels for a variety of reasons:

  • Community is abandoned; no one is posting content.
  • Content strategy doesn’t align with the brand.
  • Community was created around a product that does not exist anymore.

Hundreds of other reasons for consolidating or shutting down existing social media channels can exist, so you must create a process that prevents these things from happening in the future. Figure 10.7 is an example of a process that governs new brand account creation.

Figure 10.7

Figure 10.7 Process for creating new social media accounts

Usually in a situation like this, a specific marketing (or regional) team identifies a need to create a new social media channel. There could be a variety of reasons for this request. Perhaps the company is launching a new product. Perhaps the company is expanding into new geographical territories, or maybe there is a huge event happening that you are sponsoring.

The first step in this process is to evaluate whether or not an existing channel can be used to support the initiative. In some cases, it will, and in other cases, it won’t. When you evaluate specific requests, each one should be carefully considered before making a decision. The good news about using Facebook as a part of your content strategy is the launch of Global Pages, which helps address this issue head on.

Instead of a single Facebook page in the specific language that it was originally created, Global Pages now have the benefit of both global and regional content. In essence, it’s one page with one URL, for example, Facebook.com/YourBrand. Instead of users searching for your brand by country and in the language they prefer to read, they will only have one option to Like your page.

With the new Global Pages structure, you can create localized versions of your cover and profile photos, apps, milestones, and “about” info and provide locally relevant and regionally specific content to your community in the their news feeds. An English version’s cover photo might say “Hello,” but users visiting from Italy would see a different version welcoming them with a “Ciao!”

Your Facebook administrators can set up local versions for different single or multi-country language regions, plus a default for everyone else. A single, global URL dynamically directs users to the appropriate local version. This can help consolidate workflow, content creation, and analytics and at the same time, provide a seamless experience for your customers. So in the case of launching a new Facebook page for a region, you can potentially leverage the new Global Pages feature. In some cases, there is certainly an opportunity to create a new channel. However, you must ensure that the teams that want a new channel have the following documented and well planned out before they move forward to create one:

  • Content narrative: What are the goals, and do they have a content narrative that is consistent with the brand’s storytelling objectives? Do they have content themes/categories and a documented editorial calendar?
  • Community manager: To prevent communities from going stale and customers from falling “out of love” with your brand, there must be community managers who are not only responsible for creating content, but also responding to the community when necessary. They are the face of the brand, and they should advocate on behalf of them.
  • Moderation and escalation policy: This chapter is all about governance, so it’s possible that new teams requesting a new channel will adopt many of the governance models you create as a part of the CoE. However, part of that model should include identifying the proper “regional” resources for escalating customer support issues or handling crises.
  • Measurement framework: Before launching a new channel, the teams should have a solid understanding of how they are going to measure success and determine KPIs.

When the internal teams have their plans of action documented, the final step in this process is to seek approval for the Center of Excellence.

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