We use a lot of buzzwords to define and explain Social Media, and there is a reason for that: they work. The problem is, that over time we all talk about them, blog about them, write about them, tweet about them, and they become tired and trite and we all take them for granted. But it doesn’t mean they aren’t important anymore.
At it’s core, Social Media is about communication. That might sound rather simplistic and vague, but really, it is pretty simple.
Are the numbers really that high?
The most interesting, and troubling, thing about this is that it presumes one thing:
that the businesses in question are on Twitter.
After all, we can’t tweet at them if they aren’t there. So then we must ask, why are they there in the first place?
Your business has a phone number and an email address. You publicize them on your website, your business cards, your ads. Why? Because you want people to contact you, whether by phone or email. You have a phone, and you publish the number, because you want people to call you. And if they call you, you answer. You listen. You respond.
And you don’t just answer the phone in order to hear positive comments. You might also get complaints, and I’m betting you don’t hang up on them. You listen. You respond.
And yet, 71-percent of those who gripe on Twitter say they never get a response. It would be interesting to see if those same companies ever respond to positive comments.
Businesses set up Twitter accounts, their customers follow them, tweet at them, and more often than not…they get no response. None.
Why? Because we don’t “get” Twitter and Social Media. As businesses we skip over the word “social” and zoom right in on the word “media”. We think of it as just another one-way channel for delivering our message.
But remember, at its core, at its most basic level, Social Media is about being social. It’s about communication on a two-way level. You know that buzzword: engagement.
Twitter and Social Media are not the same as radio, television, newspapers, or billboards.
Think of Social Media as a telephone. I would even go as far as to say that it’s primary function is for THEM to contact YOU before it is a tool for you to contact them. Dialogue, not monologue.
When the phone in your business rings, do you answer it? And when you do, do you just start talking, or do you listen first?
- 2 Social Media Lessons Learned During “Snowtober” (inklingmedia.net)
- Picking through the bones of Social Media failures (businessesgrow.com)
- Six Reasons Social Media Doesn’t Work (spinsucks.com)
- Three Examples of Social Media Gone Bad (spinsucks.com)
- Small Business Tip Tuesday: Having the Proper Tools and Using them Properly (inklingmedia.net)