If approval is granted (grudgingly), building internal support is like pulling teeth. If internal support is offered (skeptically), results are continually second-guessed. Too quickly, programs are scaled back or scrapped altogether.
It’s ironic that executives have so much trouble grasping social media, because it is more similar to what they do than any other type of marketing. If you are running into brick walls, try explaining social media in terms executives can understand with these familiar analogies.
Social media as a cocktail party
Executives do a lot of mingling. For them, the line between personal and professional is constantly blurred. When they walk into a cocktail party, they’re immediately confronted by a lot of noise and chatter. Some of the guests are people they already know.
The room is full of people who are good to avoid for one reason or another; there are also tons of people who are fun to talk to whether they have business potential or not. And somewhere in the room are potentially powerful business connections, people who might be in the market to buy a lot of stuff—or know somebody who is.
This is just like the user base of any social media site.