July 28, 2010
By Anita Beninger
Social media is becoming one of the main ways to reach your customers online. If you are evaluating using social channels for business or marketing efforts, consider some of these five suggestions.
1. Find the Champion
Social media efforts take time to develop, grow and support. Find a communicator who has passion and experience using social technologies for organizational storytelling.
2. Invest in a Professional
Organizations that employ social media professionals see continued growth and success. While many of the sites have free registration, social media is not free. Social media communities take time, effort and commitment to grow and require daily maintenance and support. Keep in mind that a basic social media program can take a couple of years to fully develop.
3. Train Employees
37% of internet users have a personal social media site and some of these people are your employees. Unprofessional comments and/or concerns on social media sites can pose problems for an organization. Get ahead of the problem by providing employee training on safe and proper use.
4. Implement a Social Media Policy
Nobody wants to post a Facebook comment that gets them fired. Social media policies are important tools to guide employees and the public on proper use. By creating user guidelines employers can manage online expectations, promoting employee safety and reputation management.
5. Plan and Measure
Plan, do, check and act. Social media is no different than any other type of online marketing program. Success begins with a social media communication plan. Some aspects of a well-developed plan include data evaluation and user metrics. Metrics are an important way to evaluate if a program is working and what type of changes may be needed.
Source: Transforming Business Strategies: FHS Social Media Review 2010. ( Anita Beninger)
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