ABM Annual Conference keynote: The three pillars of engagement for social b-to-b
April 30, 2012 - Jack Griffin, founder of Empirical Media Advisors (and former president of Meredith’s National Media Group and CEO of Time Inc.) kicked off ABM’s 2012 Annual Conference with a keynote on The Customer-Focused Future and the four building blocks of the new b-to-b.
Media companies know they need to change, but are limited by the need to appeal to investors now while repositioning for the future. “We have to run two companies simultaneously — one for today and one for tomorrow,” said Griffin.
The four building blocks for b-to-b today include Data and Audience, Content and Brands, Convening Power and Community, and Social and Mobile (for an ABM video with Griffin on the four building blocks, click here.)
Griffin emphasized Social and Mobile as one of the most critical components of a successful b-to-b media company today, and he offered Three Pillars of Engagement for B-to-B:
1. Establish social listening. “Empower tools to monitor what customers, competitors and the media are saying,” according to Griffin.
2. Establish a coherent and effective social voice by selecting star reporters, editors, marketers and executives to represent your brand. “The greatest strength of social media is also its weakness--anybody can do it,” said Griffin. “You can’t just hand the keys to everyone with a Twitter handle.”
3. Drive the conversation. “The stakes are far beyond generating revenue with social media, it’s about relevance and viability,” said Griffin.
Media and business information companies need to question some fundamental questions about their makeup, including what is our culture, where does our capital come from, what are our capabilities and costs, and who is our competition? “Are you really competing with that other b-to-b publisher, or is it the tech company or website that is trying to take your customers that is the real threat?” asked Griffin.
While Griffin emphasized digital and acknowledged the old days of ad-driven print won’t return, he did say print will always have a place. That wasn’t simply pandering to an audience of publishers: Empirical Media Advisors recently took a stake in the print magazine Social Media Monthly.