Posts Tagged ‘ford’

Car Companies Rev up to Social Media

When you boil it down, social media connects brands with audiences to sell products and sell services.

The automobile industry is among the biggest in North America so it’s interesting to look at whether it is  taking advantage of social media?

Looks at the social media the presence of many car makers makes it clear this is happening. Volkswagen, Ford and Audi are making heavy investments in the time and money.

Ford’s presence on Facebook (approximately 1.8 million fans) is impressive. You could argue it should be crowned one of the early kings of the social networks.

There are very few auto manufacturers not flocking to the digital networks. YouTube also become a huge destination for brands to connect and share.

Beyond the economic implications, the auto industry has such a passionate and devoted fan base that not leveraging social media would be an enormous mistake.

Whether it is a family sedan, luxury car or SUV, social media is where you will find passionate people looking to learn more and let you know what they think and want.

Is Social Media for CEOs?

For many companies, the chief executive officer is not only the boss but the leading spokesperson.

CEOs spend a lot of time talking their company’s performance and strategic vision, as well as having ongoing dialogue with customers, suppliers, partners, investors and employees.

But should CEOs be involved in social media, which is becoming a part of the corporate communications arsenal?

In theory, CEOs should probably participate in social media but the reality is that few CEOs are activity involved, particularly among larger companies.

Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh is a hard-core member of the TwitterSphere but he’s an exception to the rule.

Many CEOs are ill-equipped to do social media. The biggest obstacles are:

- A lack of time given that social media can be a time-consuming activity when done on a regular basis.

- Not having strong enough communication skills to effectively use social media, particularly when it involves blogging.

- Limitations on what they can or want to say publicly, especially CEOs of publicly-traded companies in which disclosures rules are a fact of life.

While CEOs with smaller companies may be able to embrace and use social media, the most logical option for CEOs of large companies is using social media as another way to communicate when and if needed.

Ford Motor Alan Mulally often appears within the company’s social media activities such as Twitter, YouTube and the blog by doing interviews.

Here’s a video showing Mulally participating on Twitter with the help of Scott Monty, the company’s head of social media.

Perhaps the biggest way for a CEO to support their company’s social media efforts is by being a social media champion within the organization, thereby setting the tone for the entire organization.