Enterprises are warming up to the idea of a world run by emerging social business tools and strategies but, sometimes, they can fall too deep in the hole. By that, we mean companies can forget about the entire premise of social media in the first place: the fact that customers, brands, colleagues and internal staff are supposed to actually be social.
Your company’s social strategy says a great deal about your brand, your core competencies and your attitude. Your social approach—or lack thereof—will inevitably tell others who you are as a company and remind your key stakeholders what you’re really all about. So if your first priority of social media is no longer social engagement, you may run into some tire-popping potholes along what you initially thought would be a smooth drive. (Learn more on pitfalls to avoid.) There are plenty of great reasons why you should consider investing in social business strategies; however, the following two motivators will likely give a bad impression:
Playing Numbers: Don’t be the Arrogant Jock
Contrary to popular belief, social media is not a popularity contest.This is exactly why people buy Twitter followers (yes—there are actually websites dedicated to selling companies “followers”) and why customers inherently gravitate toward brands that boast hundreds of thousands of fans. It’s like high school cliques: Most people want to be around the quarterback with the letterman jacket than the new kid who just transferred. But the jock is oftentimes cocky, rude and immature. Over time, his seemingly large pool of “friends” is revealed to be a lackluster bunch of fleeting so-so acquaintances. Don’t get wrapped up in a numbers game. Social business is first and foremost about finding that one person, or group of people, you need to connect to—and vice versa.
Putting on a Show: Customers Can See Right through a Façade
Social technologies are not meant to sit on the metaphorical shelf to collect dust, and they’re certainly not available for your company to tout as a way of showcasing your brilliance or “progressive mindset.” Yes, social is in…but social business tools are meant to be used each and every day for improving operations and communications. You may have multiple social platforms or social software, but you’re not fooling anyone by not using the technology regularly. The impression your customers, partners and workforce will likely get as a result is that you are careless, aloof and even neglectful.
This is just a sampling of ways in which your company can misfire with its social collaboration strategy. We want to hear from you—what else would you add to our list above?