The Social Media Org Chart

“Where does social media sit in your organization?”
“In the cloud! LOL #marketingjokes #lol #funny”

Yes yes, very droll but as I drove this actual twitter conversation offline and deeper it became clear that those responsible for social media had minimal oversight and scattered responsibilities. Recently another colleague working with a Fortune 50 company met multiple people in charge of social media. All had fancy titles and none had met each other. Large or small, B2B or B2C, your management of social media staff is just as important as management of social media profiles.

Forrester research has found that the hub and spoke model is the best structure for social media. They first addressed this in 2009 and 5 years later it is still true. There are two direct benefits to this model.

1) An autonomous department will avoid inheriting any preconceived methods from within. Most often social media sits under corporate communications or marketing; this hinders creativity and decision making in most cases.

2) Your social media team will develop inroads to every other department. This not only increases internal conversation, it is a huge benefit to corporate culture.

Amongst your social media staff, you will have a team of front-line workers all under a strategist. Ideally your strategist is familiar with the key corporate goals and can translate them into a social media strategy. Companies who have a CMO or head of communications but no social media training typically hire us (at least once). By combining corporate strategy, increased communication, and independent thinking, companies will thrive in the vast social media landscape.

Thanks Flickr user Don DeBold for the image