In times of quickly evolving technologies, digital divides have fragmented several companies’ talents to stay up with the appearance of social networking via sites like Facebook and Twitter, which offer new dimensions to viral advertising, product support and rapport with the client. Traditional, old guard tech companies such as Dell and Nokia have branched out from their typical web page store fronts into frontier social networks in an attempt to bridge the distance between themselves and the consumers.
The jury remains out on the impact of those makes an attempt to become additional pronto accessible and additional clear to finish users; but, with Facebook surpassing Google because the most visited site on the Internet, businesses are scrambling to their battle stations to rethink their net strategies to harness the maximum potential of this lucrative but wild market. Let’s examine how businesses have traditionally conducted business on the Internet.
=> The Old Way
In the traditional, web-based business model prevalent since the mid-1990s, companies follow these basic steps to expose themselves to a web audience.
Hire a designer to create a website introducing the company’s products, with general contact information and an online payment system to make purchases via the website.
Attempt to boost search engine results through search engine optimization.
Pay advertisers like Google or Yahoo for show and targeted ads within the hope that traffic are going to be funneled their method.
Have the designer update the website through e-mail correspondence, or in house, accordingly.
This technique is long, costly, and offers no guarantee of increased traffic or purchases. Often times a small company still must believe heavily on trade shows and different promotional activities so as to draw in a word-of-mouth interest to make a shopper and customer base.
=> The New Way
Forward-thinking corporations who munificently use Facebook, Twitter and Youtube have modified net business with many effective measures.
=> Corporations currently use their Facebook pages as period forums and technical school support areas, and use the “Like” button to attach to users’ news feeds to their latest news, product launches and exclusive discounts. This in turn promotes the company’s product to any or all the users’ friends via the news feed, spreading through the social network with a viral impact, for free.
=> Viral advertising effects from Facebook within the type of games, and video clips on Youtube freely provide corporations a way additional viable different to hard cash on advertising that may or not reach their intended targets.
=> Companies connected to the social network tend to own a way quicker response time to dangerous news and criticisms than historically modeled web storefronts. In this regard, users often feel a higher degree of familiarity with the company, as its status appears in a news feed alongside their social networking friends and tend to foster a additional positive opinion of the corporate and its product.
Arming Yourself for the Final Frontier
=> While this new method of conducting net business has its clear benefits, the shock of the sudden, direct and uncensored exposure to the wilderness of the social networking jungle may be jarring for any business attempting this shift. So however are you able to, as a business owner, make this transition with your company’s reputation intact?
=> Before registering your Facebook and Twitter pages, check that your company is aware of its position on hot button problems, like criticized merchandise or disputed business selections. Rehearse a way to react to such criticisms, and make sure the staff in charge of the social networking branch of your operations is on the same page.
=> Ask your advertising or PR department regarding the the web persona your company needs to personify online, and maintain professional consistency. Is your company fun, caring, or cutting edge?
=> Continue a high frequency of social station updates to take care of followers’ interest. Staying in the news feed weekly keeps social networkers engaged by staying on top of the dogpile of updates the average user receives daily.
=> Be ready to react quickly to Facebook comments or Twitter tweets to form an in depth personal presence to the client.
=> Hire app designers to create Facebook applications that promote your product, or pay Facebook game designers like Zynga or Playfish to include your company’s virtual product at intervals the sport for instant viral advertising.
Social Networking in the Workplace
Now that your business has dipped its toes within the quick shifting maze of social networks, it’s going to be a wise investment of your time to create a social network via Facebook in your office. While this will no doubt have many co-workers hiding from the dreaded “Friend Request from your boss”, networking your workplace via Facebook can be a wise tactical decision for several reasons.
=> By making a personal work cluster on Facebook, it’s quicker to schedule events and share links, files (via off-site cloud computing storage), and feedback in a closed group with your co-workers. This system permits for potency and clarity with a shared calendar and core resource base.
=> By allowing your workers to “friend” each other online, there is a better chance that employees in otherwise unassociated departments within your company will begin to mingle more and boost morale. However, this could even have the adverse impact of lowering morale if there are persistent issues at intervals your company.
=> The facility of building a social networking net to tie all told your workers offers you, as a manager, a bird’s eye view of their interactions and an easier way to gauge their morale and work ethic. This allows you to launch preventive strikes against growing issues, whereas understanding a lot of of your employees’ everyday lives, which bridges the often times wide chasm between management and employees. Many managers may find this approach too eerily “Big Brother” for their tastes and may shy away from such tactics. This is, however, the fact of the changes that the wedding of social networking and businesses has created.
Social networking may be a powerful tool that spreads data wildly and unexpectedly, however learning to wield its power for your company could strengthen it each internally and outwardly.