Cisco Blogs

Social Media Recipe: “Must Have” Ingredients

November 22, 2010 - 4 Comments

A few weeks ago, I was asked to give a short speech on social media. “You have 8 minutes”, they told me. I scratched my head. I have so much to say! How am I going to do this in 8 minutes? I don’t know any more if it was Top Chef or Cake Boss that suddenly triggered a thought in my head. Social media is just like cooking or baking. Your dish tastes best when you pick the right ingredients, add the right quantities, mix them together at the right time and see the process through. “That’s it”, I shouted with excitement, “I’m going to talk about the “must have” ingredients of social media”. Here are some of the takeaways from the 8-minute version I came up with (condensed version):

Educate and enable your employees. Education and enablement are on-going activities that need to be constantly reassessed to reflect and cater towards participants’ level(s) of social maturity.      

Invest in and commit to participation. In addition to the much-talked-about time and financial investment, planning for long-term and continuous engagement is critical through the alignment of the right people, places (a.k.a. social destinations), parts (a.k.a. tools and applications) and practices. Read more here.   

Celebrate successes and learn from each effort…And share this knowledge with other groups in the company to help accelerate others’ learning curve. Help enable peers to learn from each other.

Experiment. Try new tools, try new approaches and monitor the responses you get. Adjust as necessary.            

If you’re into cooking or just want some more info on these ingredients, check out this short presentation.  To see some real-life examples, one example per slide, from our social media journey, take a look at these slides.

In an effort to keep conversations fresh, Cisco Blogs closes comments after 60 days. Please visit the Cisco Blogs hub page for the latest content.


  1. Great post, this is one of my favourite subjects and close to my heart. LOL. I like keeping up to date on all things new so i’ll definitely be bookmarking this page. Keep up the good work!

  2. This is a fantastic article and one I have definitely bookmarked.

  3. It's important to experiment, to find fresh approaches, but on the other hand, when you feel that the path you've chosen it's not the right one, it's ok to give up and try another one.

    • Very well put, Dan! Thanks for the comment.