“Every brand needs a clear and cohesive social comms plan”: Tim Lion, European head of social media, Sony

Social performance management is critical to justifying the investment in social and to track its success, believes Tim Lion, European head of social media at Sony.

“The real challenge is communicating business impact and return as well social performance, as often social metrics aren't widely or easily understood unless you are a specialist,” he explained.

Sony uses tools such as Radian 6, Social Bakers and Buddy Media to produce bespoke dashboards for performance management.

Lion, who is set to be a judge at the Social Buzz Awards, in association with iomart, said that “innovation, really original thinking and execution” is what he will be looking for in nominees.

These, he believes, are “truly rare so it will stand out pretty quickly”.

Over the past year, Lion believes that the biggest change comes from Facebook newsfeed algorithm, stating: “it has forced brands to either get next to the fact that social channels have more or less become media platforms and you have to pay to play, or if you're going organic then you need to create excellent content that your audience relates to and that communicates your brand.

“The ideal is both of course, excellent content with a solid media strategy.”

Having been the creator of Sony’s social strategy for 2014, he said that having a clear direction, set against meaningful objectives, is one of the most important this to remember.

“If there are challenges or things that can be improved, then you need a strategy to overcome those challenges. Equally importantly I think every brand needs a clear and cohesive social comms plan that defines the role and purpose of the channels and delivers, as I said, on a clear set of objectives, from brand objectives, to business objectives and of course, social objectives,” he added.

Planning and flexibility are also needed, he believes, when it comes to ‘off the cuff’ advertising.

“I like planned content that contains off the cuff work. We try to plan our narrative arcs and stories and leave space for real time content. We try to anticipate the triggers and outcomes and prepare templates or frameworks so we can be prepared to be reactive. Having an 'Oreo Moment' takes a heck of lot of planning and flexibility.”

If you think that you have a planned campaign that shows measurable results, enter the Social Buzz Awards ahead of its 13 August deadline.

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