Category: social media strategy

Do pre-approved Tweets miss the point?

An article in today’s FT invites three pundits to examine the decision by Morgan Stanley Smith Barney to tweet from a range of pre-approved tweets and the general conclusion is this misses the point.

“It is mind-boggling that companies don’t understand that letting go is in their interest” says management gury Don Tapscott.

Now here’s the thing. There is ample evidence of the ROI of meticulously controlling the content of customer communication and a whole global marketing services sector has been the result if it.

And there is very little proof, bar the personal experiences of a few young businesses that can best be described as financial minions compared to the size of Morgan Stanley, of the commercial value of “letting go”.

For sure – anyone who has ever wished to wrap a long-outdated telephone cable around the throat of an Asian call centre operative talking to you off a script will know how frustrating it can be when businesses control their message.

But let me tell you how cataclysmic and irritating it can be when you deal with someone who goes off-script – and gets it wrong.

In the 60s another generation exhorted us all to “let it go” and many did spawning a new era of music and art and in many ways changing how we think about living.

But companies like Morgan Stanley did not let go. And in my opinion they were right not to.

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Why online reviewers post

It’s worth taking a look at this infographic if you wish to attract user reviews as part of your marketing strategy.

It turns out that the motivations of reviewers are quite different from those of bloggers, Tweople and other social media enthusiasts.

The prime motivation is to be helpful and useful, primarily to help other consumers make better choices but my guess is they also want to highlight what businesses do well and to help them do things better.

This means you need to be really thoughtful how you approach, engage and reward customers to critique what you do.

Think of then as mentors, mavens and Samaritans – three types of people who are worth their weight in gold.


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Morgan Stanley Twitter strategy

It is huge news that Morgan Stanley Smith Barney is allowing its 18,000 financial advisers to post from a library of pre-authorised messages on Twitter and LinkedIn.

Why? Because we’re talking about the heavily regulated and litigious world of financial services, where everything is checked, recorded and controlled. Plus this is one of the most traditional and revered of the big wig Wall Street Banks.

Here they are, not just using social media but recognising that social media is a tool that can empower and equip their workforce to greater results.

The early days of the telephone must have been similar. Huge caution and suspicion to begin with from the concerned traditionalists alongside crazy enthusiasm from the young Turks, before he technology became recognised as an essential tool for everyone.

To me, this announcement is a harbinger of a day when social media isn’t about corporate communications, PR and marketing. It’s a tool to be used sensibly by trusted employees on every device.

Yup – like a telephone!

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