Cover Story


The Social Network

Social Media

Many companies use social media as part of their marketing. GAC is no exception.

Since January 2013, GAC has progressively set up accounts on Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram. Right now the GAC Group has over 7,000 followers on Facebook and over 105,000 on LinkedIn.

Our profiles on social media show GAC as a dynamic force in the sectors we serve. By sharing regular updates, news, images and videos we strengthen our links to a growing online community of colleagues, customers, potential clients, partners, media, competitors and more.

Local

Several local GAC offices have created their own pages, with the support of the Group’s Editorial & Social Media Manager Amanda Millen and their respective Communications Managers. These local pages host both GAC Group news relevant to their target audiences, and local items that are unique to each company or country.

Benefits

The business benefits of social media may not be clear to all, as they are difficult to measure in hard commercial terms. However, the benefits are there to be had, if we act intelligently.

After GAC Norway posted some photos of a  recent job  on their Facebook page, MD Mikael Rodseth noted that it generated interest from potential clients.

“I’m positive that if we can get some more attention on social media, it can create more business opportunities for us.”
Mikael Rodseth, Managing Director of GAC Norway

Personal?

Individual accounts by GAC colleagues can also provide a terrific platform to show off the Group - so long as the tone is professional, and clear of inappropriate or irrelevant materials. That’s why many colleagues active on social media prefer to maintain two accounts; one for business and one for personal stuff.

“Our sales and marketing staff mainly use LinkedIn to get more information about our customers, the person in charge and their backgrounds. Google is also useful for the same. Using LinkedIn does not bring direct results but it is an excellent tool for networking and keeping in touch with our customers.”
Mikko Wieru, Group Sales Director (East)

Caution

Group Sales Director (West) Neil Godfrey sounds a word of caution.

“My key concern is that social media can be a time thief,” he says. “It can be useful for tracking what our competitors are up to but presumably they are doing the same for us, so that does not really give us an ‘edge’. Our new CRM system enables us to trawl the web for social insights posted by or about customers, either by them or about them.

“Time reviewing contacts and their companies on LinkedIn, Facebook, etc. can probably be better spent on matters of higher priority, such as direct focus on actual customers and known prospects which need mining or cultivating.”
Neil Godfrey, Group Sales Director (West)

While many do not consider Facebook a serious business tool, some find it is a good way of maintaining the social side of their contacts. Neil has no issue with that but warns: “The boundaries between professional and personal can become blurred and there are potential risks attached to that.”

Make the most of LinkedIn

LinkedIn is a platform on which you can suggest solutions, announce achievements and address problems. It’s a way to win the trust of potential customers and a place for helpful, collaborative conversations rather than the hawkish hard sell. It lets individuals build their personal brand whilst promoting GAC and what it has to offer. It a research tool and a relationship builder.

Having seen its potential, the GAC Corporate Academy launched its LinkedIn For Sales (LFS) course in 2015 to help people get the most value from the platform. The course takes participants through the process of creating a credible LinkedIn page. It shows how to balance the personal with the professional approach, and looks at ways to increase networking.

To date, just over 100 GAC people have taken the course. 95% of the participants in 2016 said they would recommend it, and 97% in 2017.

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