18 January 2012 1 Comment

Online communication: Why your strategy fails

Author: yinkaolaito

Yinka Olaito is happy,excited and passionate Communications & Media specialist, Trainer and speaker. Yinka Olaito helps Profits and Non-profits with effective communication and positioning for premium service delivery and returns. Yinka Olaito also has special interest in Development Communication and has consulted for noted UN Agencies. Yinka Olaito is the CCO of Michael Sage Consulting(Communication/digital media), African Child Education Right Initiatives(NGO) and Content Director, Africa Development Talk( online Platform for discussion on Policy, Governance, development across Africa) and Africa Foundation for Young Media Professionals


E-relationship Management, Social media Communication strategy. E-strategyEvery communication effort and process needs proper planning to succeed. That a platform permits easy access or next to nothing in terms of cost does not mean lack of knowledge in its operations will be overlooked. A concerned online friend asked me a question yesterday and he would like me to discuss my response on the next blog post. The question is: what are the factors that make social/online communication strategy fail? While I do not have all the answers, below are some of the reasons that may account for such.

No background research analysis: Every effective communication strategy starts with research which identifies the challenge to be resolved. Based on this the direction of objective is outlined.
Copy and paste: many online communication efforts crash because someone just copy and paste. Even if the client does not know, the person behind it knows. Copy and paste strategy has not been known to be effective. I must agree nothing is totally new under the heaven, but wisdom and professional excellence demands there be some modifications, innovations which fit the environment and circumstances under which the brand operates.

No strong or unique measurement parameter from onset: In addition to the above, online communication strategy must outline measurement parameters. This makes copy and paste method ineffective. If a strategist engages in copy and paste, how will he/she measures efforts in relation to the brand?
No solid relationship between communication and IT team: No matter how small, for social/online communication to be successful, there must be a relationship between Communication and IT team. IT team may need to support the initiative or else most communication team will be stuck at a point. For individual or personal initiative, a level of back end knowledge will help.
Budgeting: People often overlook the need to make adequate budgetary allocation based on the size of the project and the result desired. Some still hold the view that social/online communication should be or is absolutely free. This is erroneous. Nothing is completely free anymore if great result is desired.
Online platforms rules: Message medium is vital to communication strategy success. Lack of proper understanding of online media rules as well as cross-channel application may damage online communication effectiveness.

Brand Ambassadors: Many online communication strategies have been damaged just because large chunk of the internal audience do not know what roles to play. When there is no policy which guides employees’ online media use, every effort made by the strategist may be destroyed through continuous abuse of platform, sharing classified corporate information among others.

Consultants or strategists: the success of any brand’s online media strategy may also be based on the experience of the person(s) who develop the process from onset. That a person has been successful offline may not guarantee he/she will be able to develop workable online strategy. More also, that someone carries the appendage ‘expert’ is not the same as delivery. Investment in getting someone with track record or outsource the assignment to someone who has the know-how may be desirable.
Information management: Every communication strategy must have target audience. Among this target audience there may be some that are considered influencers. Information management with each group must be properly managed. Influencers may have major role than ordinary community member. If the strategist does not take this into consideration, there is likely tendency the strategy may fail.
Can you help with other factors? Use the comment section.

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