May 11, 2011

Personal Brands as Influencers - The New Role

Yesterday there were a couple of interesting articles by Rawn Shah and Paul Greenberg.

Rawn wrote about the Social Business Jam that IBM organized (and I participated in) and asked whether the role of Personal Brands raise questions for HR

He quoted some comments from the jam (and I think I made one of those, but can't be sure for now :-)) and asks the questions:what t

  • How should personal brand value relate to compensation?
  • Should this compensation financial, non-financial recognition, or counted as special award criteria for long-term development?
  • Should compensation be based on outcomes from specific events, or should it be based more of a general quality of a person not specific to a particular event?
  • Should there be set targets and goals appropriate for their level of skill in being social?
  • Is the value of a particular outcome itself measurable on a business level? Who can measure it vouch for its value?
  • Is this expected for this level of employee or is it a degree of influence unusual and above the level they are expected to perform?

Personally I think these are new kind of roles - and need to be tracked and compensated for, not as addition to - but as roles in themselves. Such as the "vendor influencers" list that Paul Greenberg compiled (that includes my friend Prem)

Organizations that want to leverage the credibility of their "social ambassadors" in their respective fields need to carve out a role that connects with their passion and interest (in fact using Waldroop and Butler's Job Scultping model this applies to all employees!) and arrive at a consensus of what these would be. (Take Mark Fidelman's post on the Scoble Effect, and decide whether you need to hire a Robert Scoble)

So what do you think?

For brands marketing in the age of social media, is the brand evangelist/ community manager / product evangelist (ahem!) a critical role? How would you evaluate them?

Two must read articles : Ray Wang on the Trends and Influencers using a variety of vehicles and Michael Wu's series of posts on Influencing and Influencers.