Social Media for Business: Part 2

Part 2: As with any new market offering or capability, it’s a good idea to learn as much as you can from experts, participants and leaders before jumping in. Attending seminars, workshops and collaborating with peers, can be helpful when evaluating what’s best for your business. Just be careful…new media is very exciting and it can be difficult not to get swept up into the thrill.
Here are 5 screaming red flags to be aware of within the social media space:
1) Cookie-cutter approach: Several industries, including auto, offer social media packages. They are very low in price and are essentially impossible to do internally at the selling price. The key to their profit is quantity and not quality. The information is generic and impersonal, which is the exactly opposite of what participants want. The low cost is tempting but don’t do it.
2) Over zealous: You gotta luv the cheerleader (I was one for four years in high school), but be careful of the overreaching speaker. You know, the one that tweets thirty times a day, and posts the same exact message over every platform. While we luv their energy, it gets annoying when someone can’t stop talking.
3) We support social media! Wow, we’re seeing a flood of so-called social media experts. Printers, mail houses, public relations experts to name just a few that now offer social media support. Be careful, and assess what they’re doing for themselves, and what they’ve done for their clients. We’re seeing regional production agencies claim to be marketing experts, while they have two-year old information on their home page. Do your due diligence when assessing support.
4) Be careful of the super large platforms: 10,000+ fans for a Facebook page, now that’s impressive for a local advertising agency. While we never know if they built it the old fashion way, it looks suspicious when it happens over night. You can buy Facebook “likes” from out-of-country providers. Call us old fashion, but we believe in the true meaning of personal relationships, and wouldn’t consider buying a “like”.
5) If you’re participating in social media you have to blog: You’ll find lots of advice on why you should participate on a particular platform. While each of the major platforms have benefits, it doesn’t make it right for your business or your organization. I recently met with an organization, and before the meeting I googled their name. The first listing that came up was their blog, which had a typo on their home page along with a non-functioning link. When we chatted in person, they didn’t even know they had a blog.
While you consider participating or developing your presence on new media, we recommend that you kick the tires. Pick and shovel work is still important and should not be forgotten.

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