Facebook accounts for 25% of all U.S. page views online.
Awareness of Twitter has exploded from 5% of Americans in 2008 to 87% now.
LinkedIn has more than 85 million users including employees from every company in the Fortune 500.
These statistics show how integral social media has become in our lives.
Do you remember when having a website was optional? If you think about it, that wasn’t too long ago. Now we take it for granted that an organization would not only have a website but that we would be able to find what we are looking for in a few clicks. Yet right now, many organizations still think having a Social Media Strategy and presence is optional.
It could be because just about everyone defines “Social Media” in a different, and often narrow, way. Instead of thinking of just Facebook or Twitter, consider the entire medium. There really is something for everyone and that means plenty of opportunities to communicate with potential or existing customers.
Organizations could also be wary of the informality of the medium—inappropriate content, posting of pictures, obscenities, etc. Yes, questionable content is on the internet. But so are opportunities to engage customers and prospects and to carry on meaningful conversations. And you have more control of your Social Media presence than you might think.
Business leaders, marketers, communicators, and managers should work to maximize the opportunity and make Social Media part of their marketing and messaging strategy.
Begin by developing a Social Media Plan integrated into your current Marketing, PR and Communications efforts.
Then start telling your story. While Social Media is the “new, big thing,” the basic tenets of messaging still apply. Less is still more. Authenticity is still key. And making it about them—your target audiences—is still what it is all about. Tailor your Social Media message to each target audience and what they are interested in.
You can avoid Social Media and hope it goes away or you can embrace it. Just know that while you’re debating which path to choose, your competition might be tweeting to your soon to be former customers.