Some companies still ask themselves why they should have a social networking strategy. Other organizations, already more mature in this process, question themselves about the validity of having their own corporate social networking. Based on our own experience, we firmly belive that it´s worthwhile due to the following reasons listed below:

1. Branding valuation: did you know that each member of a social networki adds about U$ 80-U $ 100 to the brand value? What worths more, a company which brings only a "bunch of data" or a company that organized and took care of each of its relationships in a clear and transparent way in a corporate social network?

2. Relationships Organization: generally, contacts with different types of stakeholders are kept in databasis but, they are not organized in groups and segmented in order to build long term relationships. The same is true to all contacts of all employees that there are spread among various social networks.

3. Knowledge sharing: social networking is one of the most democratic ways of facilitating knowledge sharing, either by posting articles, photos, videos, wikis or by acting as a simple repository of several files as text editors, spreadsheets, presentations, etc...

4. New leadership identification: aiming to strengthen group activity, it is paramount to nominate a team of group leaders. This leadership must be naturally stimulated. The company will be able to observe styles and attitudes of each professional and reward them fairly whenever they create real value.

5. Transparent relationship: by the time the company organizes all its takeholders, starting by its internal collaborators, clients, suppliers in several specific groups, it opens a very strong and positive relationship channel with all of them creating the possibility that each stakeholder bring their respective relationships to the same business environment.

6. Active & identified communication: the company starts offering to everyone an environment, in which, the communication can flow both ways actively in an identified and transparent manner. Company will know with whom it is talking to, what is being discussed and what the concrete results are because the platform itself documents all exchanged ideas.

7. Market test: instead of spending a fortune in market research, how about having your own and qualified sample, make an in-house test and have a more reliable and real time result?

8. Stakeholders loyalty: we recognize that there is a challenge to overcome by the time the company is exposing more. However, by facing and solving problems directly and by finding intelligent and creative solutions involving each stakeholder specifically, the company will consolidate its brand before the market and will attract the best opportunities besides making all stakeholders loyal and having them bringing new businesses to the organization.

9. Central, global & local management: after a time, the social networkn will evolve to a central relationship point among all with several modules like payment gateway, webconference, mobile solutions, CRM, reducing tremendously the operational costs of new business search and allowing the global reach by having strong presence on the Internet while reinforcing its local presence.

10. Lock-in effect: considering that (a) in general, people are fairly resistent to changes and that (b) everyone of us compete for time and attention of decision makers, the one, who better involve and seduce them, will have conditions to create a a lock-in effect making competititors´action tremendously difficult. “The winner takes it all.”

It is worthy to note that before thinking of implementing a corporate social network, it´s is important to define and clearly prepare the CNO – Chief Networking Officer and the Business Networks Management (BNM) team.

Is your company ready for this challenge? And what if your competitor is?