Keith Bates

Contact at

One of the things I learned early in my long marketing communications career was the power of messaging over the mechanics of media. More important than how messages are distributed is their content. So before exploring the complexity of social media and the endless array of digital tools, it is important to define, and manage, the desired messaging.

In addition to my CMO On Call consulting business I started a social network for adventurers ( which acts as my social media laboratory.

* Why the African scene? Many, many years ago I was a licensed PH (professional hunter) in South Africa. The images have stuck.
Keith Bates -- CMO On Call
ITA Member

“STRATEGY IS SORELY LACKING IN MOST SOCIAL MEDIA PROGRAMS WE’VE SEEN. In most cases, clients come to us asking how they can get going on Facebook or Twitter. We tell them that’s the wrong question.” *

Wednesday November 28, 2011


by Paul Gillin and Eric Schwartzman

Listen to your B2B market, generate major account leads, and build client relationships.


For B2B marketers the whole social media thing has been a little frustrating because most of the big success stories have been consumer focused, not business customer focused. But Paul Gillin and Eric Schwartzman have changed all that with this incredibly well thought out and researched book.

With endless examples and brilliant insights the authors can spare you reading of the endless books on social media that are 99% consumer focused. Valuable excerpts from the book follow:

B2B relationships are inherently social, and Gillin and Schwartzman show how to use the new breed of tools to uncover the human potential in every business and involve customers at every stage of the development, sales, and support process. You’ll learn how to:

  • Create an organization that integrates online conversations seamlessly and comfortably into its culture
  • Develop an engagement strategy that reaches all the stakeholders in a decision
  • Plan marketing campaigns that take full advantage of social media tools–separately and in combination with each other
  • Find the communities that attract your customers and target markets–and become an essential member of them
  • Calculate ROI using real-world metrics that business executives understand


*”Successful social media strategies never presuppose the use of social media. In fact, we find that in many engagements social media are only a small part of the optimal program. Marketers are often delighted to discover that tactics that they know well, such as media relations, public speaking, and e-mail marketing, often have more utility in achieving their goals than social media. A blog is, after all, only a tool, and tools are useless unless you know what to do with them.”


In conversations with hundreds of marketers over the past few years, we’ve observed that few of them closely track the ROI of their social marketing programs. In fact, many of the most successful marketers we’ve met aren’t that concerned with ROI at all. Rather, they invest in social marketing because they believe that the intangible benefits—customer engagement, market awareness, continuous feedback, and professional development—are good for any company, regardless of the financial impact. (However) they measure like crazy, and some of the most common criteria they use are web traffic/response rates, qualified leads, customer loyalty/retention, brand awareness, and revenue…but they rarely translate the benefits of engagement into hard dollar figures.”

If you’re considering embracing social media in any form this book is a goldmine. Invest today. And reap the benefits in short order.




One Response to Effective Social Media Begins With Strategy

  • Keith
    February 12, 2012

    Excellent assessment. Thanks much.