It’s time to ditch your suspicions about Facebook at work and get Social for Business
Wednesday, April 15th, 2015
Edinburgh PR agency explains why social media should be an essential component in your business strategy
THESE days even your granny is on Facebook.
Which explains why so many schoolkids are turning to services like Snapchat and Instagram to keep plugged in with their pals while avoiding the prying eyes of parents.
So, if social media is so deeply entrenched in society that pensioners are happily using, then it must surely be a staple of daily business, right?
After all, no business would prevent its staff from using email or the telephone, so why would they want to block something as ubiquitous as social media?
Yet suspicions still stalk the corridors of many businesses … with managers beset by creeping doubts and nagging uncertainties.
They can’t help but worry that if staff are spending time on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn they must be viewing cat videos, planning nights out, stalking old flames or frittering away time playing Clan Wars or Candy Crush.
The reality is that most staff aren’t looking to waste their entire work day updating their personal online status at your expense. Sure they will keep updated with their friends, family and colleagues, but they’re also busy with all that work stuff, yeah?
Instead of looking at that social media activity as a cost to your business, how about looking at it as an opportunity? In return for trusting your staff to use social media responsibly, ask if they’ll do a bit of sharing and advocating on your behalf.
If you stop to ask, maybe you’ll find they’re already using Social Media to find potential customers and people who need or want your product. Maybe they’re using it to find solutions to problems, to bypass business obstacles or to qualify leads.
If any of this sounds unlikely to you a simple Google search reveals countless reports about forward-thinking organisations harnessing social media and related tools to enhance productivity.
Most recent among them is this report from Tipbit, the 2015 Business Behaviours Study into social media usage, as reported by Reuters. You can also download the at-a-glance report by following this link.
Here are some edited highlights for you:
- 27% of those surveyed use social media as part of their business workflow
- 72% of them used Facebook, with 56% using LinkedIn
- 41% use social media to research other professionals before meeting with them
- 61% use Facebook to search for information on people (it was 51% for LinkedIn)
- 37% use LinkedIn to search for information on businesses
At Scottish public relations agency Holyrood PR in Edinburgh we believe that social media should be an essential part of both your PR and business strategy. We love helping companies take advantage of these channels to boost their business profiles. Used correctly the results can be impressive.
So, here is our simple guide to four benefits every business should keep in mind when considering why to embrace social media.
As the Tipbit study shows, few business people now limit their searches to Google only. Instead they are searching via Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn – as well as following news and updates from those channels. You have to be where the audience is and in 2015, that means being active on social media.
It gives you the chance to get real insight about your customers. The very reason some businesses fear social media is because of the amount of time people spend there. That means your customers will also be checking and updating their social profiles throughout the day. If you do it properly, this gives you huge opportunities to interact with current and potential clients and to engage them in real time conversations about your mission, products, events and services.
Social media can help you put a personal take on your business. Instead of just a company name, customers see the real people and the personalities behind the business. When they have a question, a problem or an issue needing resolved, they can also see that someone is listening to their concerns and delivers helpful feedback and as a result it can increase their loyalty to your company.
- Potential increase in profits
If you have active social media accounts on multiple platforms, it can improve how your business appears on search engines which will boost your visibility – and potentially increase your profits.
For most businesses in the digital era, a website is more than an online brochure – it is a vital tool for attracting and converting new clients and customers.
Google analytics can help you monitor your social media activities and assess whether or not they are having a positive effect on website traffic, resulting in new business leads.
As a result you can weed out unproductive activities and focus on those that have a positive effect. Get it right and you’ll get more potential customers viewing your website, which will hopefully lead to an increase in profits.
Ensure you work with a public relations agency which delivers success – then amplifies it via social media
We would love to hear from you if you have questions about how social media can benefit your business. Call us for a chat on 0131 561 2244 or alternatively fill in the form below and we will get back to you.
Scott Douglas is the co-founder of the multi award-winning Holyrood Partnership, renowned public relations agency in Edinburgh, Scotland.
As well as providing expert PR services in Scotland and the UK, the former journalist heads a team which offers a host of other professional media services.
Those include crisis management PR, photography for business PR, affordable business video, social media campaigns and strategic content planning and delivery for businesses of all sizes.
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