3 Steps to Better Business Social Media
For businesses with 10 or more people, the question of social media becomes far more complex than for the average entrepreneur. Laying down a strong foundation, however, will place your business – or future business – ahead of the social media game.
1) Develop a social media policy or document. This document will grow with you, so start basic. It is easy to get overwhelmed in the world of social media: the sites are numerous, as are the rules. The first draft should include which employees are allowed to speak on behalf of the company, if employees are allowed to talk about the company on their own sites, and should include a contingency plan should something be misspoken or misrepresented. Be sure to also state what your business’ goals are in using social media and what tone of voice you want to take when literally shouting at the world.
When you begin to grow as a business or company, be sure to address these key points as well: data privacy and security, intellectual property/confidentiality, data ownership, employee productivity, brand misrepresentation, and employees who move to new roles, departments or companies.
2) Invest in employee training and education. Training and education ensures your employees – as well as yourself – are informed about the latest forms of social media as well as social media etiquette. Be sure the training is designed to not only train employees on the basics, but also addresses the tough questions, as those listed above. Educating them in advance on what is appropriate, allowed and encouraged will ensure there will be less mistakes spoken to a major audience. It should also teach them about the positive reasons to utilize social media.
3) Lastly, but most importantly, learn about your customers while engaging them. In order to reap the benefits of social media, you must first engage your customers. Social media establishes brand credibility and lends the expertise your customers will buy into. Twitter feeds, Facebook status updates and LinkedIn groups are all powerful tools which can share a single, powerful piece of information with a listening audience.
Provide compelling questions which get your audience thinking, and then follow up with their answers or further questions. Sharing your expertise does not water down your credibility, it ensures people turn to you when they have a problem you can solve. It places you top of mind and therefore first in line when your business is needed.
Keep these three points in mind and develop them further as your business grows. The world of social media is waiting…
– Keri Haywood
Sui Generis Editing
Original three points listed in Bank Technology News, article by Clara Shih