Articulating a personal social media strategy

Carinus, Suzaan (2012-12)

Thesis (MBA)--Stellenbosch University, 2012.


ENGLISH ABSTRACT: History and statistics confirm that social media and the internet has come a long way and is bound to keep evolving and growing in the future. But many opposing views and criticism surround the ubiquitous use thereof. One’s personal social media strategy is the basis of personal branding. Managing the strategy pro-actively and creatively is thus very important. The report gives a quick overview of the web key concepts, technologies and tools currently available for social media participation. These tools are grouped by looking at various current social media classification frameworks that exist. Alas, classification must also somehow make provision for forthcoming platforms – and is thus not conclusive. A discussion of the latest technological, digital and social media trends and adoption factors were also included. Knowledge of the trends influence the personal social media strategy formulation heavily. Intermediaries can also assist to provide the required knowledge or experience and also more extensive services if chosen, because creating content is much different from merely consuming it and the technologies, tools and trends change incredibly fast. Several case studies were analysed to gain insights about guidelines, etiquette, risks, challenges and achievements in the social media arena. The various lessons demonstrated the importance of establishing guidelines for social media participation. The case studies further demonstrated that the level of transparency the world has now, won’t support having different identities for a person. Everybody need to understand and accept the societal shift and adjust their behaviour accordingly, if they want to achieve success in the digital arena. This is also of the essence to CEO’s – as their companies will increasingly require their involvement in the social media arena, in order to remain relevant. All the relevant factors were taken into consideration in order to compile a suggested framework for personal social media strategy compilation. Following the framework, not as a recipe but as a mere guideline, will assist individuals to draw up their own personal social media strategy. The strategy consists of four phases, namely planning, organising, execution and monitoring and are set out with several building blocks contained in each, as well as advice on how to approach each building block. Despite the formality of the given framework, it is imperative to remember to have fun – if the creator is not, the audience certainly also won’t and all the effort will most definitely be wasted. Key words: Personal social media strategy; Social media; Social networking; Social media guidelines; Personal social media strategy framework

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