Social media: Getting down to business

Social media can be effective tool when properly managed and implemented

            The trend that has become Social Networking can certainly help a business or owner increase the bottom line through the sharing of ideas, events, and interests with other like minded business people. But in many cases, this trend at places of business has gotten out of control as it spirals into more of a personal nature, where employees waste time and can actually cost businesses money. Additionally, many businesses have the desire, but not the dedication and desire, to implement social media properly, leaving any results from it lacking. The best results for social media, as in face to face networking, require a professional approach. So it is important to seek professional guidance, find the format that best matches what your business are trying to achieve and limit you and your employees’ time spent doing social networking to the task at hand.

            “My participation in the LinkedIn professional network has provided me the opportunity to discuss issues with other professionals from across the world,’ says Rob Griffin, “The ability to utilize the expertise of others is an invaluable tool that can be easily realized through social networking.” Using social networking can also be an effective tool when trying to get like minded people together for an event or in promoting partners on a wide scale. “We use it to promote all of our activities, events, major hiring opportunities and any other news we need to relay quickly and to a large audience,” adds Suzie Miller, “We also like to help promote our other economic partners and also forward on exciting happenings in the business world.”

            But social networking can also have adverse, albeit unintended, effects on a business. One recent survey in Great Britain showed that as much as 50% of British employers had banned the use of social networking during office hours. “It is best to have a tight control over the use of social media at your business,” says Erika Jones, “I advise my clients to have a specific employee manage their online presence, and have that employee stick to a specific purpose as well.” And just as important is that the employee you choose has the expertise to get the job done efficiently and effectively. “Social networking is kind of at the stage where websites were a few years back,” adds Jones, “And unfortunately many businesses are having to go through the ‘I had my kid or our intern set up my business’s Facebook presence since they know all about that stuff anyway’ phase. In fact, many of my clients came to me for this exact reason.”

            Social networking can and should be a part of a serious media and marketing strategy in business today. The media platform provides businesses with avenues to introduce themselves to customers on a wide and ever growing platform of opportunities. “Social networking through Facebook or similar social networking mediums are governed by our corporate Franchisor,” says John Cassity, “However, I have a QR code for building a subscriber group who then allow my company text communications, and from there I generate loyalty rewards to my clients and drive sales with great offers each week.” On a smaller business scale, the use of social networking can help create added business opportunity as well. “I have a Facebook business and personal page and keep in touch with my clients generally on a personal level, adds LaVonne Gorsuch, “I can keep up with what they do for a living, their families and to see if I can assist them in protecting what is most important to them.” 

            Just remember what is most important to your business should be the proper use and implementation of social networking.