But, in today’s digital environment, does that same theory hold up? Sure, there are digital deliverables. Setting up Twitter and Facebook accounts. Building an effective blog. Brainstorming and creating videos to post to YouTube.
But there’s so much more to offer.
In fact, I might argue there’s much more value to lend around the following:
Intelligence gathering: Helping your clients or organization get smarter is one of the most valuable things you can do for them. Some might argue if you help them get smarter, what role is left for you? Plenty. There will always be trends and information to keep tabs on. In fact, the current flow of information has never been quicker. So, I might actually argue the complete opposite. If you can figure out ways to keep your clients one step ahead–you’ll always have a role on the team.
Coaching: Be a sounding board. Provide feedback. Give unsolicited advice. Make the client/organization a better consumer and user of digital media. Isn’t that what a good coach does? Isn’t that what Lou Holtz would do? Phil Jackson? Bill Parcells? Read a good industry book recently? Share it with a client. Point out sections you found particularly insightful. Again, coaching is all about providing extra value. And your online smarts can help those in need.
Monitoring: With the advent of social tools and networks, this is an area where clients/organizations usually just don’t have time. They need help. They need you. But, while setting up the right system is hugely important, so is serving as a quality filter. Know what to look for. Provide analysis of the data–not just data. Again, think about the value you’re contributing. If you’re just giving the client/organization numbers, you’re not doing your job. Give them context. Provide potential ideas based on what you’re hearing. Use monitoring to identify emerging influencers in the client’s key markets. There’s a wealth of data here–take advantage of it to help the client get smarter about it’s online strategies.
Strategizing: Probably the area where you can add the most value. What should the client’s approach be online? Where can they really make a difference? Suggest strategies that really make sense for their business. Make sure what your recommending also syncs up with existing PR and marketing activities. And, take a look at the comprehensive plan, too. There may be existing opportunities just waiting to be mined. And make sure whatever strategic approach you’re suggested can be measured. Even if it’s just follower counts or comment numbers. Benchmark. Measure. Tweak. Repeat.
In the end, these four areas will provide much more value to your clients/organization than simply creating a Facebook page or starting a Twitter account. And, should agencies/consultants really be creating and managing these social accounts anyway?
Of course, that’s a whole ‘nother discussion for a different post 😉