Home – Social Networks: Curse or blessing for your business?

Social Networks: Curse or blessing for your business?

Posted on 08-07-2018 by Alyssa Vorhees

Author: Miki Vayloyan 07/04/2018

 According to a recent study 1 , more than 50% of global online users use social media as a source of information every week. 14% even stated that social media was the main source of information for them. The social media boom offers opportunities that can quickly become a threat if ignored. If the competition expands the reach on social media rapidly, this could have unpleasant consequences for the own enterprise. One thing is certain: Social media is the virtual marketplace of today, which is used by innovative companies to connect with target groups, to build relationships and deepen them.

The right preparation

As quick and easy as an account on Instagram, Facebook or other platforms is set: First determine your social media strategy, before you "just get involved". A good social media presence requires preparation. You should ask yourself:

  • Which networks are suitable for my company?
  • What goals do I want to achieve? Gaining New Customers, Boosting Brand Awareness, Creating a Community, Improving Company Reputation ?
  • How can I achieve these goals? An editorial plan helps to keep track of topics, platforms and goals.
  • Who should communicate with the target group? Do I act as a company, as an employee of the company, or do I communicate through influencers?
  • Which influencers are the right ones for my product?
  • How do I react in case of negative comments? So that negative feedback does not even develop into a shitstorm, a robust, pre-planned crisis management must take the wind out of the sails in good time.

Trust is good, control is better!

PR pro’s should also consider this motto in your social media strategy. The potential dangers such as reputational damage, which can arise, for example, from each other by highly expressive negative comments or unfortunate contributions, we are probably all aware. If such comments pass behind your back, it may be too late before you can respond. It's imperative to stay in control - and that only works with the right tools . Let's take a look at two popular social networks together to get a better idea of ​​how you can control and control your social media presence.

Keep your eyes and ears open

 In the ranking of the largest social networks in the world according to the number of monthly active users Facebook is according to statista 2 in the first place. In the second quarter of 2017, Facebook had about two billion monthly active users worldwide. 

Now imagine how many people you can reach via Facebook. The possibilities of the range sound tempting. But do not forget the other side of the coin. Because the same amount of people could talk negative about you there. How do you get that in the sheer mass of users, posts and comments?

If we compare Facebook with a marketplace again, it quickly becomes clear that even in a marketplace, we cannot have our eyes and ears everywhere and only notice what is happening in our direct environment. On Facebook, the direct environment is initially the company's own website. If a user comments on our current post, we receive a Facebook message and can respond to the comment if necessary.

But what if someone talking about you at the neighboring stand of the marketplace? Also on the Facebook page of your competition you may be mentioned in the comments of various users who compare their performance with the competition. Would not you like to receive a notification about this? And how do you react when users in non-market groups assess your brand, service or customer service? Are you in a position today to record these developments on an ad hoc basis?

Or a dissatisfied customer publicly leaves his frustration on your product on his Facebook page and advises his Facebook contacts from buying your product. Surely you would try to get in touch with someone who is yelling this across the marketplace and take the displeasure seriously. New customers and customers will also notice your reaction. Good digital communication is today the basis for your customers of the future.

Whether you choose to opt for or against a Facebook profile for your business, keep in mind that these risks exist in any case. After all, people can also talk badly about your stand in the neighboring town even if you are not active there. In any case, it makes sense to keep an eye on the events on Facebook in order to be able to react to risky situations. The good news is: That's possible. With monitoring tools you can observe social networks in real time . For example, you set up an "alert" for Facebook, which is an email notification that always informs you when your company, product or topic is mentioned on Facebook, So you will not miss a conversation on the entire marketplace.

From text to pictures - and now?

 Another "big player" is Instagram. According to Instagram statistics 3 , the image platform registered 800 million users in November 2017, of which 500 million are active daily. The importance of Instagram as an advertising channel is shown by the development of advertising customers: in March 2017 there were still 1 million advertisers. Only six months later, it was already twice as many. The same rapid development applies to company profiles. Since June 2017 alone, 10 million company profiles have been added, so that in November 2017 they were already 25 million. 80% of Instagram users follow at least one company, and two out of three business profile users are not followers of this company yet.

The big difference between Instagram and Facebook is that Instagram focuses on images and videos, and pure text posts are not possible. So how do you watch your business on Instagram, if it's mentioned there in the form of an image? The solution lies in automatic image recognition. A professional social listening tool recognizes logos and logos on pictures, Imagine a person with a lot of followers posted a picture with your product. Thanks to the automatic image recognition, you can be part of it, can react to the image and thus increase your follower number. With the person who has published the image, you can network and develop it as a potential influencer for your business.

Especially in the popular Instagram stories, users usually give insights into their lives in the form of short videos. For example, if your face cream is now positively mentioned by an influencer in its story, it can directly affect your sales figures. As these product mentions are usually planned and funded by companies through an influencer partnership, it is important for you as a company to identify the right influencers . Because with suitable influencers you improve your credibility. With the right social media monitoring tool , you can specific topics by matching influencers Search and compare them with each other via a dashboard based on specific KPIs.  Who has the greatest reach? Who receives the most comments and likes and thus has the greatest engagement with his audience?

3 Ways to Apply This Information Now

  1. Request a demo of LexisNexis Social Analytics (powered by Talkwalker) to better monitor your brand and see what you could be missing.
  2. Read our Ebook on “5 Keys to Measuring Social Media Influencers.”
  3.  Share this blog on social media to keep the dialogue going with your colleagues and contacts.

Sources

1 Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism, Digital News Report 2018 
2 statista, Statistics on Social Media Usage 
3 Futurebiz, Instagram Statistics for 2018, 29.06.2018

Miki Vayloyan has been working at LexisNexis GmbH since 2013 and works as Business Development Manager Media Intelligence within the DACH region. Her consulting focus is on (social) media monitoring: from professional monitoring, evaluation, to analyzes and insights as well as suitable communication channels. Since October 2016, she has also been President of the Swiss Association for Market Observation, Competition Analysis and Strategy Planning - Swissintell.


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