People are at the core of any business and business leaders are no longer ignoring the potential of social technologies for communicating and connecting with their customers.
In 2010, just 38% of respondents made use of social media but in 2012 this has increased significantly to 73%. This reflects phenomenal growth in social media usage over the past few years.
The primary use of social media by survey respondents is for customer interaction in the sales, marketing and support channels. This is to be expected as forays into social business typically start with sales and marketing looking to understand trends in customer sentiment and relative product positioning.
Use of social media for internal collaboration ranks lowest, indicating that social media is still not viewed by CIOs surveyed as a core enterprise tool for knowledge sharing.
Given that some enterprise technology providers are investing substantial amounts in the acquisition or development of internal social media platforms, the question must be asked if CIOs are missing out on an opportunity to encourage internal communication and innovation.
Despite social media being an easily accessible and fast growing customer channel, only 68% of organisations have a formal social media strategy in place. Previously social media policies were only concerned with whether or not to allow employees access to social media sites. This has now shifted to actual business policy as the communication dynamic moves to one of customer engagement.
With the growth in mobile social media and BYOD, approved or otherwise, it is essential that a social media policy should be viewed by CIOs as an increasingly important priority.