No DIY SM for B2B

(If you don’t understand the title of this post you should definitely read it. Do-it-yourself social media can spell disaster for B2B firms. — The Editor.)

Watch Out for Social Media Amateurs

Social media. It’s great. It’s all around us and everyone seems to be on it. You’re grandmother, your neighbor’s dog, even a pickle has more ‘likes’ than Nickelback. Gone are the days of a pen on paper letter and ‘IRL’ high fives or pokes. Companies have abandoned classic marketing techniques for the Wild West atmosphere of viral marketing. Unfortunately many companies are like a dog in a science lab … they have no idea what they’re doing.

Having your general employees run your social media campaign is like having your grandmother plan your bachelor(ette) party. It simply doesn’t make sense. Keep your company from making the all too easy transition from trusted to friend to rubbish bin.

A 2011 poll asked Facebookers why they chose to ‘thumbs down’ and dislike someone they previously followed. 46% of American respondents said it was because “Information was published too often.” That response was tied for first with “Information posted was not interesting.”

What can you and I take away from information? 1- Don’t post crap. People want good, quality content and relevant information. What’s good content? It’s blog posts written by real people, it’s well made videos that people actually want to watch from beginning to end, it’s infographics about issues that matter, designed by a designer and not a computer.

Secondly, and I believe, most importantly, don’t flood your followers. I like to think of social media campaigns like weather. Everybody loves the occasional storm. Rain, wind, maybe some lighting thrown in for good measure. But if the rain doesn’t cease and it comes day after day, drop after drop, it starts to get old. Quickly. Especially when the person stuck out in the rain storm may be only mildly interested to begin with.
Imagine yourself in this predicament. You’re stuck in Seattle without so much as an umbrella. But you get an offer to turn off the rain with a simple click. It’s obvious.

But sometimes things get even worse. A Montana ice cream company put their social media life in the hands of their company president. A customer, someone who already enjoyed the rain, posted on the company Facebook page asking about ingredients for religious reasons. The company president responded with, “We don’t deliver outside of Montana, certainly not Pakistan.” Wow. Customer relations at their finest. The ice cream company has been blasted with negative Yelp reviews, Facebook comments and was torn apart by Reddit.

Obviously, this is the worst case scenario. More often than not when someone who doesn’t understand social media, runs social media they post some silly videos no one cares about, share their breakfast photos and ‘like’ everything from here to Norway. But none of this is unavoidable. Hire someone who knows what they’re doing to run Facebook and Twitter, you’ll be glad you did.

About the Author
Drew Blanc is a businessman. He’s worked with start ups across the country, created brand identities and worked with several prominent writers. Drew is a freelance writer for Pensxpress, makers of custom pens.

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