Social media as a strategic orientation and organizational performance within the mobile telephony sector in Kenya
Social media has opened a new perspective in the way business is conducted. Most organizations are adopting the available social media platforms and formulating strategy to guide them. The study sought to determine the influence of social media as a strategic orientation and organizational performance within mobile telephony companies in Kenya. The research was conducted through a survey involving all players in the mobile sector. It was, therefore, a census study of the mobile telephony firms involved in social media namely Safaricom Ltd., Airtel Ltd. and Orange Kenya Ltd. Primary data was collected from the targeted respondents through structured questionnaires. The questionnaires were sent to top managers, middle level managers and officers in strategy and business development, marketing, finance, information and communication technology and customer care departments due to their direct involvement in the business decisions that drive growth and performance of the organization. The study through data analysis found that the organizations have optimized social media for their customers by a mean of a mean of 4.45 and they understand how to translate the social media metrics to business indicators by a mean of 4.27. Social medial strategy implementation benefits the organizations through enhanced and effective customer care by a mean of 4.18 and marketing of its products and services by a mean of 4.05. Lack of well-scripted policies, procedures and guidelines are major challenges in the implementation of social media strategy by a mean of 2.73. The study also through data analysis found that provision of lessons on the benefits of social media by a mean of 3.86, obtaining top management support by a mean of 3.64, understanding the organization strategy by a mean of 3.64 and encouraging information exchange by a mean of 3.59 are important strategies to enhance use of social media. Through data analysis, organizational performance had improved in the organizations as indicated by a mean of 3.32. The study recommends that the three mobile companies should educate their employees on the benefits of social media. This will enhance employee acceptance of the use of social media .In return the organizations will reap the benefits that come with this technology. The organizations should invest much more on employee training which will increase employee skills on use of technology. The management should support various ICT polices and provide both technical and financial support which will enhance use and implementation of social media .The top management should formulate clear policies and organizational strategies that will enable the organization fully benefit from social media. Effective implementation would require effective evaluation and control of the implementation process.