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Edelman, First PR Firm To Officially Offer Social Business Consulting Services

Will large enterprises trust a PR agency to conduct "social business integration across the enterprise?" Maybe. If any agency could take a swing at it, I'd look at Edelman. I just wonder how the VP of Logistics (or pick any other seemingly "Old School" department) is going to feel when "a PR guy" tries telling him how to integrate social into his line of business?

I also wonder how the folks at Altimeter and Dachis and Deloitte Consulting will feel about (and respond to) this new competition from a new direction?

Interesting times.

cc +David Armano +Jeremiah Owyang +Charlene Li +Peter Kim +Chris Heuer
Michael Brito's profile photoPeter Kim's profile photoTodd Defren's profile photoJohn Hill's profile photo
My thoughts exactly, Todd. Should be interesting to see how this works.
Great questions, Todd. I believe that Ogilvy, WCG, and FH have been performing similar work.
I'd trust some of those firms a lot more than others, Peter.
+Scott Monty - in all honesty, can you see the guy who runs Ford factories welcoming this? And if so, is he more likely to expect and embrace it from "Deloitte" (known for biz consulting) than from Edelman, Ogilvy (known for PR/advertising), et al.?

I am not trying to be a naysayer ... as a PR/Social pro myself, I actually tend to give the profession more "props" than some of the clowns I've met from mgmt consulting firms. BUT, I can't help but wonder if this is a bridge too far.
+Todd Defren In reality, I think it needs to come from within, regardless of who the outside advisory firm is. Leaders in various business units or regions (within Ford, as least - I can't speak for other companies) are more likely to take counsel from trusted sources within the company that truly understand the business.
+Scott Monty - which begs the question where those "trusted sources from within the company" will get their ideas for "social change," that is, "from which outside advisory partners are the internal change agents most likely to turn?"

Maybe it COULD be the PR/SocialMediaMarketing partner. After all, we've been contacted by Fortune1000 brands to conduct SM training. It may not be such a leap. Certainly firms like +Edelman Digital have deep hooks into such companies...

Anyhoo - it's wait-and-see time.
+Scott Monty +Todd Defren Doesn't matter where it comes from. Scott gets it, Todd gets it. The people who get it are the ones who have the responsibility to drive it forward.
+Todd Defren +Peter Kim Yes, other firms doing it as well. (Ogilvy, IBM, and various consultancies) I wouldn't agree with the headline on this post that Edelman is first PR firm to offer. We've been doing portions like the others. Would say we're committing to elevating the game. What +Scott Monty says about trusted sources is probably key. Though I'd concede that obviously the big consultancies SHOULD be doing this for their clients, big time.
+Todd Defren great comments here. I too, wonder how the VP of Logistics or IT would feel taking advice/direction from a PR guy. Very early on in my career i worked in an OD group and the sentiment was similar .. "who does this guy think he is trying to tell me how to run my business?"

Difference is that today many of our clients are a part of a Center Of Excellence team, so it requires a strong partnership with them to help influence/persuade other orgs to work together towards a common goal.

And, the truth is (and we all know this) many companies have been trying to sort out "internal" issues for quite some time at it relates to social .. When I was at Intel, we were thinking about governance/collaboration years ago before it was called social business. And from what I understand .. they are still struggling.
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