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Rangers and Scouts

by Randall Craig on February 9, 2010

Filed in: Blog, Make It Happen Tipsheet, Management, Social Media

Tagged as: ,

In an army, every person has a role. The foot soldier is on the front line. The general sets the strategy. But how does the general know what’s happening, beyond the front lines? And similarly, how do senior managers understand the impact – and the opportunity – of Social Media?

Like the army general, senior managers have rangers and scouts who can help. They know what’s happening on the ground, in the marketplace, well beyond the front lines.

These rangers and scouts are the younger workers, IT and marketing staff, and specialized consultants. Internal rangers and scouts do their learning late at night, and in skunkworks and pilot projects. External rangers and scouts bring best practices and an outside perspective. Developing a successful Social Media strategy requires the synthesis of both.

This week’s action item: There is no sign-up sheet to be a ranger or scout: expertise and experience are easy enough to acquire yourself. This week, google “Social Media” and the name of your primary competitor. You may be surprised by what you find.

Strategy tip: Rangers and scouts aren’t just for Social Media; they can gather incredible competitive intelligence. And they’re not just for large organizations: individuals have them too. Who are your Rangers and Scouts? And are you tapping into their vein of knowledge?

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Randall Craig

@RandallCraig (follow me)



Randall has been advising on Web and Social Strategy since 1994 when he put the Toronto Star online, the Globe and Mail's GlobeInvestor/Globefund, several financial institutions, and about 100+ other major organizations. He is the author of seven books, including the recently released "Everything Guide to Starting an Online Business", and speaks across North America on Social Media and Web Strategy. More at and

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