Social Media is the defining communications channel of this era
Social media and business: does size matter?
More and more companies are considering the use of social media to increase their consumer/ industry visibility, but does it work for every business? In my opinion the first consideration to address is who your audience is and what you want to get out of them? That then defines your preferred channel whether that be LinkedIn, Facebook, Flickr, Twitter, Pinterest etc…
Once these suitable methods are defined and set-up, the next question we often hear from clients is around visibility; How do we increase our fans/followers? Why does company XX (typically their competitor) have more followers? Social media fans or followers offer a whole spectrum of usability positives and ensure businesses are in direct contact with their consumers but is size really everything?
Can and should we judge the effectiveness of a Facebook page by simply considering the size of its user base? Maintaining and attracting new fans to any page is a challenge, but with new, engaging content and a refreshing, fluid dialogue it can be achieved.
In addition to the number of fans, companies should also focus on the quality of their target and of their interactions. There is a need to analyse numbers but is it really important to achieve xx new fans if these people are not particularly interested in what you are saying or in your products?
It is more fruitful to have a smaller user base, of tailored contacts that interact and take value from your posts, than to have thousands of non-targeted and ‘fans’.
Notably the message and the quality of content needs to be a focus for businesses that want to have direct contact with consumers through social media channels. Facebook and other social media aren’t simply a copy of a company’s website, where they try to sell products; they are conversational tools to get into the psyche of your consumers and to build a brand personality. Consider instead valuable content, start a conversation with your user base, be there to answer your user requests and to encourage dialogue, treating people as real ‘friends’ or brand loyalists and not simply Facebook fans or potential customers. There is an opportunity out there and size is not the right way to assess it.
Silvia Asperges, AxiCom Italy
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