Two weeks ago, Valeria Maltoni shared insights that ought to make some businesses nervous. A new study from Smart Brief reveals that as many as 86 percent of all people don't know that planning is the first step toward effective communication.
Even more concerning was the size of the study. Smart Brief did not survey a handful of people online. Instead, it surveyed 6,000 business people to uncover eight themes as they pertain to social media. However, the most compelling portion of the study suggested that business people, communicators especially, are all but abandoning communication planning.
What are businesses doing instead of planning communication?
In relation to communication, it seems that advertisers, marketers, and public relations firms are adopting tools but leaving tried and true strategies behind. Instead of drafting strategic communication plans, they are picking social networks and technologies that are currently popular and then adopting a string of "tactical" components to inflate the meaningless measurements.
Ergo, the only "outcome" is to drive more traffic and attract more followers. The approach can be likened to yelling on a street corner or, in some cases, right in the middle of the road, blocking traffic. In fact, yelling on the street corner might even be more effective, considering most agencies don't even bother to check the ZIP codes or business proximity before they put on the costumes.
Is it any wonder most firms lack social media confidence?
Maltoni's post goes on to reveal that while many firms are selling social media services, only 14.2 percent of businesses find their social media strategies to be very effective and only 7.3 percent consider them “revenue generating.” While I might argue that not all social media campaign need to place revenue as a top-tier primary outcome, the very notion that companies are paying for services with no measurable merits is concerning.
The reason there is no confidence in social media has nothing to do with the value of social media. What it has to do with is that social media is being implemented as a line-item service without any real consideration for the overall communication plan. Why not? Well, from what I read here, it's because no communication plan exists.