Social media can no longer be ignored, even by traditional marketing agencies and old-school businesses. But before you make the plunge into this powerful but often misunderstood marketing tactic, ask yourself these 7 important questions.
Can you have a conversation? I recently saw a wall comment posted to a major clothing retail chain’s Facebook page, questioning whether the company was going out of business. As of today, the comment still has not been responded to. Obviously, they are not interested in having a conversation or managing their brand reputation for that matter. If you want to do social media, make sure you have the time to listen and respond, not just push out content.
Do you have the time? Managing a Twitter or Facebook account can easily suck hours of productivity from an aimless employee charged with the task of managing it. Are you willing to invest the necessary time but able to limit fruitless, unproductive chatter? Are you able to commit to the long haul? Social media is more of a commitment than a campaign. If you start, expect to finish and stick with it for the long run.
Are you saying anything worth listening to? If you’re thinking of using Facebook updates as another channel for press releases or pure advertising, think again. Your friends and followers will quickly see through this sham. The key is to strive for interactions. If your updates contain only push content (e.g. “Come buy our new widgets!”), your followers will quickly tire. Much can be accomplished by transforming push into pull content (e.g. “Please comment with your opinion on our new widget!”)