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5 Important Reasons Why Your Business Needs a Social Media Policy

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Businesses have a hard time staying away from social media because of all of the potential benefits that come with it. A lot of us don’t realize that social media can act as a double edged sword and bring our businesses down if not handled correctly. Whether you have employees handling social media accounts to just help your customers or you are launching a full blow social media campaign, it is important that your company has a social media policy that is properly enforced.

Bad Impressions

Having a policy will ensure that no one will end up sending the wrong message to your audiences. If someone is having a bad day due to a co-worker, you don’t want them to go on your social media accounts and start posting their situation for everyone to see. This might seem like a farfetched idea, but the truth is, it happens more often than it should. Keep your social media accounts maintained and do not allow your employees to give anyone a bad impression of your company.

Unwanted Situations

Bad social media practices can lead to unwanted situations where you might have to take action against someone. Using the previous example again, you have an employee who ranted about his bad day due to a co-worker. He then start an entire conversion regarding the issue and puts the company in a really bad situation. You might end up needing to take action against that employee for failing to properly handle the social media account. This whole situation could have been avoided if you had just had a policy in place for your employees to abide by. Now your ex-employee is jobless, you have to hire someone new, and your business is still in a bad situation getting bad impressions off of your profile.

More Effective Social Media Marketing

Social media marketing campaigns can be large and confusing, but having a step by step policy and what is supposed to be done will make it much easier for your employees to keep on track. There are so many different types of social media marketing strategies, so it is important that your social media team understands exactly what it is they are supposed to be doing and what they are not.

Businesses that hire social media teams without giving them many guidelines usually see a wide variety of different strategies being used, but none of them going anywhere. If the team focuses on a particular strategy, it will go much further than just doing a few things here and there.

Productivity Issues

Ever had someone that is running your social media accounts fail to get all of their work done because they keep getting sidetracked by all of the distractions that can be found on those sites? Well, this happens all of the time. By placing the right policies, you can ensure that they will no longer waste your company’s valuable time because they keep visiting profiles and websites that are completely irrelevant to their work. Making them aware of what they are allowed to do and what they should be staying away from, will give them a guideline on how they can spend their time.

Helps Promote Your Brand

Social media and branding go hand in hand. Again, using the previous example. One employee posting the wrong things put your company’s brand at risk. If that post continues to get more and more views, your public image will change and can hurt traffic, sales, and overall growth. It is important to have a policy in place that only allows you brand to grow in the right direction. Risking your brand can ultimately bring down your whole business, so don’t underestimate how important it is.

There are many more different benefits that will come with setting up a proper social media policy, but these 5 examples should get you thinking of creating one as soon as possible. If you want more examples of businesses getting hurt by social media situation, look it up, you will find as many as you can read. Although having a policy won’t create a fool proof way to control your social media presence, it sure does help a lot.

 

Author Bio:

This is a guest post by Ness. She works as a writer at www.make-a-web-site.com  – a site dedicated to help webmasters and website owners choose the best host for their domain. Check out their website for more web hosting reviews.

 

 

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Report: Social Media Spending Threatens To Overtake Paid Search Among SMBs

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Borrell Associates has come out with an extensive new report about small business (“SMBs”) and social media adoption. It contains forecasts and spending estimates as well as other data about SMB usage of social media as a marketing tool.

There’s a great deal of data already in the market about SMB adoption of social media. What they show is that between 45 percent and 70 percent of SMBs say they already have a presence on social media sites (mostly Facebook).

Borrell reports that between 60 and 64 percent of SMBs have a formal presence on social media sites. An earlier 2011 study by Palore found that 58.2 percent of SMBs are on either Facebook or Twitter. And a late-November survey from MerchantCircle found that about 70 percent of SMBs said they promoted themselves using Facebook.

Borrell also found that social media marketing was just behind paid-search for SMBs in 2011. Given the ambivalence that many SMBs feel about paid search (though not organic) one could expect that social media advertising and other promotional spending would surpass paid search in 2012.

Borrell’s report estimates that roughly $6.2 billion was spent in 2011 on social media advertising (all in) and that Facebook captured or saw about 65 percent of that. The SMB-specific component of social media spending is smaller, roughly $1.14 billion, according to the report.

Another interesting piece of data in the report is the way that SMBs measure social media success or ROI. Most use “new customers” as the key metric (it’s not clear how many actively or successfully track that however). Additional fans/followers comes in at number two.

Borrell says, “On average each [SMB] has a network of more than 4,000 friends and followers. But this statistic is skewed by a few respondents who claim tens of thousands or more. Perhaps a better gauge is the median reported: about 250 followers.”

Yet even 250 fans/followers is probably more than a substantial percentage of SMBs have on their pages. The mid-2011 Palore study argued that about 38 percent of SMBs on Facebook had very few fans/Likes and very little engagement. The percentage of SMBs showing limited follower activity was even larger on Twitter (44.5 percent).

The Borrell report illustrates the increasing demand for social media marketing among SMBs. However it doesn’t explore the gap between that demand and the often ineffectual or inept social media efforts of those same businesses.

 

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