However, there's a cautionary tale here: often times, planning is confused with strategy. Establishing a strategy with clear, well-defined and measurable objectives is far different than planning. The planning process certainly involves setting a strategy, but most of it entails laying out the tactical steps needed to reach the desired objective.
Confusing planning with strategy causes many marketers to take a "platform approach" to social media. It's a natural tendency. When you think social media, you think Facebook, Twitter, Blogs, YouTube, etc. As a result, many marketers approach strategy setting by platform -- "what's our strategy on Facebook?" This isn't all bad. Platforms should be approached in different ways -- blanket strategies fall flat in social media. But it's important to remember that Facebook alone is not a strategy. Social media platforms can be thought of as conversation facilitators. As I've said before: conversation and content are the currency of social media.
Moving forward, when you sit down to formulate a social media strategy, resist the temptation to blurt out statements like: "our social media strategy is Twitter." Instead, start with questions such as:
Admittedly, this is an incomplete list. But the idea is this: change your frame of thinking when developing a pharmaceutical social media strategy. If marketers continue to mistake planning with strategy, social media professionals will never have a seat at the table with key decision makers.