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voestalpine: best practice of Social Media Going Industrial

January 7, 2011

Austrian steel conglomerate excels at using new features of the Internet  

It is easy to dismiss “social media”, defined as a using features of the Internet for direct person-to-person interaction, as a strictly social phenomenon, something teenagers do instead of talking face-to-face, or, at best a consumer marketing oriented media channel.

However, basic communication is changing in this Internet-dominated world, and there is value in understanding practical ways of using social media to simplify business. How can a manufacturer use social media to its advantage? Much has been written about this topic, but a lot of information is provided by consultants who do not want readers to consider a “do it yourself” approach.

As a global conglomerate with annual sales of approximately USD 13 billion, voestalpine is known for its success in defining and mastering narrow niche opportunities. The firm´s website provides a link to its excellent social media manual that can apply to many industrial or business-to-business firms. First it offers a primer on social media by defining the basics along with specific social media channels. This includes practical advice on how a project and sales team can use free, easily available software to share videos, photographs and documents with one another and customers. It then offers seven principles for dealing with social media; a “how to” guide for employees to use social media channels on behalf of their employer. The guide addresses concerns such as privacy, copyright, branding and responsible communication.

voestalpine enjoys an excellent world-wide reputation by serving its customers well. Their social media link is an excellent example that freely sharing their best practices in using social media´s simple tools is just another good way of doing business.