Sue York and I are revamping and expanding a training module I created last year called “The Busy Exec’s Guide to Social Media”. The idea that underlies it is how an exec can spend just 20% of the time that an SM fan spends in order to gain 80% of the benefits.
Our thinking at the moment (and we’d love to hear your thoughts and suggestions) is that there are probably five things that the 20:80 exec should focus on:
- Facebook. Everybody needs to be on Facebook now, just so they can follow the conversations, just like every exec needs to follow the news and to be aware of the main entertainment and sports stories. However, the 20:80 Exec should only use Facebook for private or business use (not both), and they should be a very passive user (not posting, gaming, tagging etc).
- Twitter. Twitter can be the best single source of information for the busy exec, but they should avoid tweeting, other than the occasional retweet or reply. Following a collection of useful Twitter accounts and hashtags can reduce the need to read industry publications, search YouTube, and follow blogs. The key to making Twitter useful is to use an alternative interface, such as TweetDeck – and knowing about search.twitter.
- LinkedIn. The main use for LinkedIn is to find a small number of discussion groups that really interest you, anything between one and four groups is good for the 20:80 way, and use these to keep abreast of interesting discussions in your field of interest. LinkedIn is also useful for finding information about other companies, getting in contact with people you meet at events, and for building a CV.
- Reading Blogs. The 20:80 way does not involve writing a blog, blogging takes a lot of time and quite a bit of dedication. However, in most fields there are some key blogs that are really worth reading. The busy exec should sign up to three or four of these and thereby develop some areas of specialist knowledge and information to complement their existing strengths.
- Google. Google has a variety of tools that can really help the busy exec, amongst which are: having a gmail account for when everything else fails (and to be the account you use to sign-up to things), Google Insights to find out what people are interested in, Google Blog Search, and alerts. Other interesting options which go just beyond the 20:80 way are Google Docs, iGoogle, Google RSS reader.
The 20:80 way is not be as much fun as fully embracing social media, but it does enable a busy exec to get most of the benefits and perhaps even more importantly to stay in touch with where everybody else is.
As part of our revamping of this course Sue and I are running a one hour webinar as a beta test and you are welcome to sit in on this session if you are free, it will be held on Wednesday 30 March, at 10:00am London time (which is one hour ahead GMT at the moment), click HERE to sign up for the webinar.
What do you think of the five recommendations above? Would you remove any, change any, add something?