Published on 23 February 2012
Social media for business eg., Facebook – should be employed by an organisation entering into the social media for business world with the following in mind, that Facebook the most successful of all social media forums was originally set up as a communication platform for real people.
Facebook as a forum is for real people., friends and friendly announcements amongst friends, when used in a commercial sense it is for talk of the “industry” often disguised as friendly chat, offers and promotions.
Whilst it is not originally intended for organisations increasingly organisations themselves are using Facebook in the hope of gaining increased business.
Let’s face it – stats for Facebook are impressive. More than 750 million active users of which 50% log in every day and a high percentage on their mobiles before they get out of bed.
Many commercial enterprises make the mistake of using Facebook as their so called YOUTH or emerging market contact point. They target what they think is their audience in the hope that they are “listening”.
Invariably of course, THEY ARE NOT.
If the benefit of “LIKING” an enterprise is rewarding enough then Facebook users may deem the connection worthwhile. If so, it is because the offer or even the humour within the offer outweighs the tedium of becoming a “FAN”.
Facebook gives POWER TO THE PEOPLE., power to the audience not power to the organisation despite it’s best efforts to get involved with a particular audience and entirely because of this Facebook is to be respected by any and EVERY organisation or group that gets involved to better their own ends.
Building a list of “fans” is the modern day equivalent of generating an email marketing list. Once people have “liked” your business, you can send messages to their news feeds.
The most successful messages will probably be special offers and very informative news, with reasonable frequency (not too much / not too little). Remember users can “unlike” you at the touch of a button.
Facebook is not the same as Twitter so don’t make the mistake of cross-posting the same messages between the two platforms
- Build a strong brand – some people “like” pages purely out of brand loyalty.
- You may need to offer people an incentive to “like” you … e.g. a free gift, or an informative download, or discount voucher.
- Facebook can be used for customer contacts – feedback / complaints via the “wall” or “message” systems.
- Reply to public messages quickly and view criticism as a chance to improve.
- Never delete user feedback because it is a complaint.
- Make use of the photos / video capabilities of Facebook to give your customers more information about your business.
Twitter as a social media option can be a more useful tool for regular communications as it is often seen as a commentary communication instrument.
Whilst both F&T are “opt in” Twitter is often a very good option for making those quick and speedy comments and internal or external industry observations to a wide, sometimes following audience. Casting out into the digital world is an excellent strategy. Opinions are formed and commented upon as a result and that others may “follow” – becomes a greater and more interesting probability in the short to medium term than is the longer term Facebook.
Tweeting interesting comments regularly may attract “followers”
A platform for instant customer feedback – respond in a timely and honest manner.
Social Media is here to stay, it is a constantly moving feast and to get involved is to understand how useful it can be for your business and business development.Google+