Who “Owns” Social Media? Answered!

The debate has been raging across the social sphere – when it comes to business, who should “own” social media? Should it be PR? Marketing? Corporate Communications? HR?

Well, meeting an end-of-October deadline for a decision, the Social Networking Ownership & Responsibility Treaty (SNORT) has just been ratified. At a secret meeting convened by the Global Union of Relative Unknowns (GURU), an A-list conclave of social media mavens and all-stars has come to a final decision, announced at midnight last night on Twitter.

Social media, from now on, will be the responsibility of the Maintenance Dept.

Anticipating an upwelling of surprise at this announcement, the cabal of rockstar bloggers and tweeters outlined the rationale for this decision, in five main points:

     

  1. The other departments are used to just throwing stuff out there and leaving the aftermath to others. Maintenance, on the other hand, is used to cleaning up the mess, and who better to deal with all the detritus that will result from ill-conceived and poorly-executed social media programs?
  2. Maintenance is already “on” 24/7. Instead of paying high-priced employees or agencies to respond to social platforms at all hours, janitors and groundskeepers can easily be trained to field comments and tweet on behalf of the company at little or no extra expense.
  3. Social media is all about tools. Maintenance works with tools.
  4. The only turf wars Maintenance cares about is defeating grubs and crabgrass. That means greater corporate peace, more productivity, a healthier corporate climate, and ultimately, a flourishing of social media happiness and harmony.
  5. Maintenance really doesn’t worry much about ROI. So that’s a natural fit.

It isn’t yet clear what all the ramifications of this move will be, but it is widely expected that most bloggers will now end up with their computers in the basement, which actually should not present any real change management issues.

While all of the members of the GURU committee had expected to remain anonymous, Wikileaks managed to obtain a 90,000-tweetchat transcript of the secret deliberations and decision (#GURUSNORT), which also indicated that there were plans afoot to certify social media practitioners through a SXSW-style popularity contest, and to stratify them according to a new measure of credibility, the “Wiley.” Wikileaks did redact out all the names of the participants, explaining in a statement that, “we didn’t feel it necessary to publicize any particular individual’s participation, because if we mentioned Mitch Joel, we’d have to talk about Joseph Jaffe and Jim Long, and then DJ Waldow would get jealous and want to make sure we also included Amber Naslund and Lisa Petrilli – so we just left all the names out. Even Liz Strauss.”

Meanwhile, the city of Austin is urging SXSW to add a new “Maintenance” track to the annual geek spring break festival,with such topics suggested as “Trash-talking Ain’t the Same as Joining the Conversation,” and “Unclogging your Micro-blogging.” The track should be held after all the other guests have left, so that the downtown area can be restored to end-to-end cleanliness by leveraging an iPhone-toting cleanup crew.

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About Steve Woodruff
Steve Woodruff is a blogger, a Connection Agent, and a consultant in the pharma/healthcare industry. He specializes in helping people and companies make mutually beneficial connections.

17 Responses to Who “Owns” Social Media? Answered!

  1. Toby Bloomberg says:

    Brilliant! I’ve always thought that the janitor would be a greater blogger or tweeter. When you think of it s/he prob’ly knows more about the company than most.

  2. steveolenski says:

    Are you trying to imply or flat out say that the bulk of social media is best suited being handled by those who deal with trash all day?

    hhmmm… I’m beginning to see a correlation….

    And I love this line “a flourishing of social media happiness and harmony.”

    Oh wait, I thought it said a “flushing of social media happiness and harmony.”

    Never mind…

  3. I have absolutely no idea what you’re talking about.

    Will someone please get Mack Collier and Tom Martin on the phone? They told me my #GURUSNORT DMs were all secure!

  4. glennross says:

    If this works, I can see how the maintenance department would be flushed with success. Especially if maintenance makes a clean sweep of all social platforms.

  5. tom martin says:

    Thanks for not mentioning my name…. wanna be SNORTGURU ;-))

    Classic and bookmarked for future chuckles

  6. Kellye Crane says:

    Of course, maintenance has proven early-response capabilities in handling crises — they just sprinkle that smelly sawdust stuff on there so they can sweep it up. This should port well to the online arena. I, for one, applaud the GURU’s SNORT.

  7. Tim Adams says:

    This is a great thought post and should be listed under new #Innovation #strategy for companies! Love the #GURU and #SNORT concepts – very good and yes! There should be new thinking around tracks at conferences! Perhaps #GURUSNORT chat time on twitter for all the maintenance workers out there!

    Thanks for making Friday Fun!

  8. Paul Evans says:

    Finally, you figured it out. The matching faded blue Dickies shirt and pants combo and the scuffed Reeboks had you fooled for a while … but know you know the lanyard hanging from the army surplus belt is attached not to a ring of fifty keys, but to an iPad …

    Yes, sitting on an upturned bucket next to the air drying mop heads in our little janitorial closet/cleaning supply depot/toilet paper storage facility, we tweet away the night time, building brand, interacting with customers and preserving market share.

    A simple nod as you pass us in the hallway is all the thanks we require and will acknowledge with a simple nod back … try it some time.

  9. 40deuce says:

    hahaha!!
    This post was amazing! Made my morning.

    Cheers,
    Sheldon, community manager for Sysomos

  10. jill says:

    Live, from the blog, it’s Saturday Night!

    Good work Steve, very creative.

  11. sally says:

    Loved this, Steve!

    Managed to my morning espresso :)

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