Social Media Primer for Board of Director Members

by Matthew O'Brien on March 21, 2015

Board of directors social media primerI recently had the privilege of presenting to the board of directors of the NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association which represents about 900 independent, community-based telecommunications companies.

This presentation was custom tailored as an overview “social media primer” for the local board members who represent a mostly retired demographic. When polling the audience with a show of hands of who were on the following networks, this is an estimate of the results in the room:

  • Twitter: less than 5%
  • LinkedIn: less than 15%
  • Google+: about 1%
  • Facebook: about 45%

These numbers are frighteningly low and surprised me as well as the members of the audience.

The presentation was positioned this way to NTCA board of director members:
“People are already talking about your company via social media. If you aren’t aware of it, you certainly can’t do anything about it. Learn where to focus your attention and what you need to know in order to be a social-media savvy member of your company’s board.”

I found a great connection with bridging the technology divide of this audience by reviewing their Core Values: Our Guiding Principles of the NCTA:
“The NTCA is committed to a culture of trust, respect, support, collaboration, communication and innovation. We are dedicated to forging industry partnerships and outreach to government agencies and related organizations to advance our mission. We will deliver exceptional service to every member, every time.”

Community outreach, collaboration, trust, respect, support, communication and innovation all sound like some of the core elements of a well orchestrated content marketing and social media strategy. Despite being an audience of technology neophytes, the census in the room was that social media is a growing force that needs to become a larger part of the overall marketing strategy and why they offer educational seminars just for their board members.

Additionally, as disruptive technology like the Internet of Things (Iot) change the behaviors of consumers and their reliance on broadband and cloud based solutions, traditional business models like the NTCA see the need to adapt their business model to maintain their market share.

NTCA Speaking Profile Page: http://www.ntca.org/rtime/speakers.html#obrien

Presentation to NTCA: http://static.coreapps.net/rtime15/handouts/5302add1b9e3fc08ee02ddb4b8f32f11_1.pdf

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

M. Himelfarb March 25, 2015 at 10:00 pm

Matt,

No surprise that you were able to ‘open’ some eyes and minds, even for those who are so educated, experienced and responsible. They were well-served to have you elevate their awareness of the breadth, relevance and power of social media. Very nice work.

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Matthew O'Brien March 26, 2015 at 7:24 am

Thank you for your kind words Michael! Very much appreciated!!

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