Many businesses are still resisting social media because they fear the inherent risks. Others have embraced social media and made it an integral part of their business marketing strategy. With its popularity and easy access, there are risks involved. Like anything risky in business, a business using social media should have a plan of action and a proactive approach to manage and protect against these risks having a negative impact.
How Can These Risks Be Avoided?
Mismanagement of social media accounts can result in defamation, intellectual property losses, or privacy leaks and security breaches, can happen within an active community. The sources of these risks can come from a PR disaster, your company employees, or the public, audience, and followers of your community.
A definitive strategy or guideline, which requires planning and proper assessment, is important for a business actively participating in social media. This strategy should address and underline:
- The goals and objectives of the company for using social media.
- The content and voice by which the company speaks to its target market.
- The roles and responsibilities of company employees in relation to use of the medium.
- The manner or process the company must take when responding to feedback, especially the negative ones.
Some examples of these guidelines may be found on this site. Larger companies go as far as providing guidelines for IT strategies to protect the database containing user information.
Why a Social Media Expert is Key?
Whoever handles social media within the business has control of the content that is being distributed online. Thus, they should be well-trained and well-educated about the company’s strategies and the use of the medium as a whole. Once the medium is learned, it’s easy for anyone to post and share content that sometimes, over-sharing by a staff member, or letting a misinformed and untrained staff handle this, can lead to a PR disaster.
The person handling the accounts must also understand public relations in order to deal with a strong opinion or feedback from a follower. With social media, however, this person must also be familiar with the right tools to use to monitor and maintain the account, especially since there are plenty of other services that can boost or kill a business’ presence and influence online.
What Tools To Use To Monitor Online Buzz
Creating buzz around a business, brand or product can happen fast on the internet. But with so many channels to monitor, it may not be easy to learn about this quickly. How would you know if someone is raving or ranting about your business, so that you will be able to address their concerns?
One way is to use a tool like a Google Alert, which is a content detection system that sends notifications via emails whenever your business or company is mentioned on the internet. Another way is to take note of keywords and #hashtags to use in searching topics on social media sites. These tools are also useful for monitoring industry trends and the competition, which should help your business come up with better social media strategies.