Social media is an inherently useful and often brilliant platform for businesses to communicate with their customers. It’s important not only because just about everyone is on it and utilizing it in some form or another, but also because it provides businesses with an extremely convenient and instantaneous form of communication with their customer base.
Unfortunately, though, not all is bright and sunny in the world of social media. Here are just few potential problems that your business may run into on the social media front:
Problem #1: Weathering The Negative Feedback Storm
Although social media is a great medium for customers and fans of your business to voice their thoughts and support for your business, it’s also a perfect location for them to vent about a bad experience or, even worse, spread horrible negative feedback about your business and, for example, its seemingly poor customer service and communication.
So while social media can be an extremely powerful tool for building the reputation of your business, it can also be equally as damaging to that reputation for businesses that are unprepared to weather the negative feedback storm through their social media presences.
That’s why it is so important for any business to plan for and undoubtedly respond to the inevitable negative feedback that they may receive on social media. Ignoring that feedback, even though it sounds like the ideal route, is not the solution. The solution is to prepare how you will respond to those negative comments — will you offer unsatisfied customers simple condolences or something for free — and actually follow through with those plans. But know that, most importantly, nobody likes being ignored, regardless of how absurd their complaints may seem.
Problem #2: A Good Presence Takes Time and Effort
Yielding the optimal results for your business through social media — you know, actually getting individuals to talk about your business — isn’t something that will immediately and effortlessly come about.
First, there’s the issue of finding who exactly will manage your social media presences. Will one of your employees do it? Will you?
Then, there’s the issue of managing the content and information that you will inevitably be feeding into your social media streams. What sort of pictures, events and videos will you be providing for your loyal fans and followers? What will you do in order to further encourage conversation surrounding your business?
Unfortunately, all of these different components take time. Planning on what you are going to say through social media, and how you are planning to present that information isn’t exactly a simple process.
Problem #3: While it May Be ‘Free’, It’s Not Really Free
Social media is widely assumed to be free. And, at its most basic level, it essentially is.
xBut in order to correctly and adequately manage a social media presence, it obviously takes time. And time, for the most part, costs money. If you are planning on managing your own social media presence for your business, consider the time that you will have to spend in managing those presences away from managing your actual business. The opportunity cost for doing so, especially for a business owner, would be pretty substantial.
And then if you are planning on having one of your employees manage that presence or, even better, outside help from an online marketing agency, obviously that too will cost money. For employees, it will take time away from doing their normal tasks, and for an online agency, it could cost as little as a few hundred a month, to a few thousand, strictly depending your specific business needs and expectations.
Ultimately, none of these issues are insurmountable. They are simply some of the instances and problems you might run into when addressing the issue of social media for your business. It is not free, not all of the feedback you receive through social media is positive, and it’s definitely not effortless.
At the same time, the results that your business can yield from having an adequately managed effort can be huge. That’s why it is so important, regardless of any problems or setbacks that you might have with regard to social media.
Good social media presences aren’t free or effortless, but they can certainly be a huge asset to your business. It’s just up to you to figure out how — if at all — you want to approach it.