I don’t know if you follow the sporting world, but if you do, you have probably heard about the communication faux pas experienced by the Canadian Football League’s Calgary Stampeders this month, and the B.C. Lions last month. In each instance a high profile player sent out a tweet which included derogatory comments. These players were dealt with quite differently by their respective teams – one suspended from a game, the other forced to donate money to charity. No matter what action was taken, the reality includes stepping off the same page as their team, employer and most fans. This highlights the need for having a clear social media strategy for your business communications.
Social Media Communications
Social media is a fabulous communications channel which allows you, as a business owner, to communicate with others. You can establish and build relationships, share information, insights, and opportunities. Social Media strategy allows you to promote your products and services but in a more subtle manner.
I encourage my clients to think of social media like a giant billboard. The information you share is out there for everyone to see — not just your inner circle. Unlike a highway billboard, once the information is released it cannot be taken down! This fact alone is one that should always be remembered when speaking out. If what you say today is something you can live with forever and is a positive reflection of your brand… then hit send!
Social Media Strategy
A successful business is built on a solid business strategy. The same should be true for your marketing and communications As a business owner, the best way to maximize your impact through social media (or any communication channel) is to create a solid social media strategy. What are you trying to achieve? What information do you want to share? What tone, image, message content do you want to portray? Do you have ways of measuring the effectiveness of your social media strategy? How will you build this into your time schedule so you build the know-like-trust factor with current and potential clients.
Social Media Policy
Every business should establish a social media communications policy when they have employees or contractors who work with them – in house or virtually. Your brand is dependent on creating a good impression 100% of the time. A slip by a team member, such as the two football players mentioned above, can have a devastating impact on your business. Once you establish a policy, along with suitable procedures, make sure everyone is informed. Make yourself available to support your team’s ability to share information in a positive, professional manner on the social media highway — whether its personal or business.
A Social Media Resource
There are many resources out there on social media, and many people who claim to be experts. I am not a social media expert but I am a professional business person who has successfully used social media to help grow my business, gain exposure and share my thoughts and ideas. Many of my clients wanted a resource to help them integrate social media into their businesses, while maintaining privacy, high ethical standards and professionalism. My latest e-book “Ignite Your Social Media — A Guide for Professionals” is my answer to their requests. Tips, ideas for content, screen shots and support information to create your social media strategy and policy is included for you.