Are You Managing Your Social Media Or Is It Managing You?
Mastering management issues around social media is fast becoming a priority for business leaders in all sectors. We outline for you five ways to effectively manage social media with a capital “M”.
Five Ways To Manage Social Media With A Capital “M”
A number of studies conducted last year reported that many businesses decided they ‘must try harder’ when managing their social media. In fact, 69% of the businesses surveyed identified that efficiencies could be achieved by mastering management issues.
In addition, the Journal of Digital & Social Media Marketing has been working hard to find and publish articles that help to define the term ‘social media management’, as it has been identified as one of those tricky phrases wrapped in assumption and misunderstanding.
To help with understanding and compliance, a number of sector specific guidelines have been published to establish the minimum standards and protocols of social media delivery. For example, the financial services industry will be influenced heavily by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) guidelines to be published in spring. Likewise the College of Policing published a Code of Ethics in 2014. In addition companies looking to upgrade social media management systems should ensure that all compliance and governance protocols are met with regards to UK data handling.
It is not just management issues that marketing managers need to focus on. Improving the customer journey via social media is also important. For example, over Christmas UK retailer John Lewis inadvertently lost traffic to a Mr Lewis, @johnlewis, who was inundated with tweets inspired by the Christmas campaign featuring Monty the penguin.
Understanding the risks of social media delivery is a critical element Needless to say this was a headache for the official @johnlewisretail account. However, looking at the sales results for John Lewis, the social media glitch appears to have caused minimal damage to the brand overall. However, understanding the risks of social media delivery is a critical element when it comes to managing social media effectively.
Here are five ways to manage social media effectively with a capital “M”:
1. Back To Basics
To understand the nature of social media channels it is important to find out how audiences respond to the content provided. What do they like and what do they dislike about the content? It is also worth revisiting the trends associated with social media accounts and evaluating the ratio of outbound content versus inbound customer service queries.
2. Choose The Right Channels
Organisations should check whether their social media channels are providing the right environment for the right audience. For example, many business-to-business (B2B) companies report that their Facebook pages are less about customer engagement and more about supporting their websites through advertising and promotion. Whereas, at the opposite end of the scale business-to-consumer (B2C) brands are finding an increasing number of customer service enquiries being posted on platforms like Facebook, raising the issue of response times, transparency and in some cases crisis PR.
There has been a drive in the UK to rename ‘customer call centres’ to ‘customer experience centres’ , as more social media customer service representatives are appointed to manage the influx of inbound activity. Many public service organisations, including the UK police are responding to the public demand for contact via different channels with social media being integrated into emergency 999 centres. Therefore, be sure to focus on the right channels for your audience.
3. Stay Safe
The recent cyber attack on Sony was one of the biggest security breaches of the decade. It followed ‘the snappening’, the security breach of Snapchat which left many teenagers too embarrassed or shy to seek help, as well as the webcam security breach, allowing hackers to see right into the heart of British homes. It’s not just big brands that are suffering unwanted attention. Businesses need to review security to protect themselves, not only against hackers but also from security blunders caused by well meaning, if misguided, employees or brand advocates.
4. Effective Collaboration
There are many ways to grow, reach and improve social media effectiveness, with one of the most important being collaboration across internal teams. As customer service enquiries increase, response teams can experience severe growing pains. In one example, a customer service enquiry linked to a leisure centre swimming pool on a Saturday afternoon, ended up taking nearly two weeks to resolve and generated 17 emails across 8 members of staff.
The problem arose because there was no clearly defined route for the query, and the delay in response resulted in the customer turning to the press to vent their frustration. The inbound query should have been automatically forwarded to someone who was on duty that weekend, with a protocol in place to respond appropriately.
5. Analysing Social Media
Too many social media managers are still being evaluated entirely on the number of followers or page likes rather than engagement and effective reach metrics. Having a top end modern social media risk management and compliance platform in place, enables teams to really sharpen the focus and impact of social media activity. Analytics can provide strong return-on-investment (ROI) analysis, helping to secure additional investment and resources, as well as highlighting what’s working and what’s not in the day-to-day delivery of social media.
Take back control and make social media an essential part of the evolution and innovation of your business, and remember to manage social media activity with a capital “M”. Read more here
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