Is Your Brand Really Ready for Social?

photo by shawncampbell

Sometimes I don’t think that brands take social media seriously. There are some that are great at it and you can tell by the way they engage and how they connect with their followers and fans. Then there are those that don’t engage at all, and just pump out the news like an RSS feed. I had a chance recently to be able to interact with some brands on Twitter, which I’ll be posting about soon. Some have engaged really well and some haven’t. This leads me to ask the following questions that I think need to be thought of and answered if your brand is thinking about getting “social”.

How does your brand view social?
Does your brand see social media as a way to engage people or does it see social media as just another avenue to blast out news? How your brand views social media is going to determine how your brand engages or doesn’t engage when you get started. Having a good understanding of what social media brings to the table and what it doesn’t is important to know before starting up any social media program.

Do you have the complete support of upper management?
Having the complete support from “the powers that be” is very important because they have to believe in social for it to work. Social media is not all free. Investments have to be made and if upper management has not bought in completely there will be limits to what you can do.

Do you have the resources / manpower?
New York is the city that doesn’t sleep, and neither does social media. Do you have the necessary manpower to devote to social media? Can you operate outside of your own business hours, especially if your brand is a global one? Are you prepared to handle the volume of conversations that will happen and do you have the right tools to monitor what people are saying about your brand?

What are your goals?
Although this is the last question on my short list, it’s probably the one you want to answer first. You need to determine the goals for your social media program before you start it. It’s important to take the time to really think about what the goals should be. Think about what your success points will be for each goal and how you can measure them. Think long and hard about whether or not your goals are even realistic. Your goals will also determine what social networks you should look to get started with.

Are you managing a social program for a brand? What other questions did you have to answer before you got started?

2 thoughts on “Is Your Brand Really Ready for Social?

  1. Very important questions to think over before start dealing with social media. “How does your brand view social?” is the one I liked the most. It’s never occurred to me how important this question is. I agree with most of your ideas. This is an excellent post, as it makes consider all pros and cons that are necessary to be done for successful promotion.

    1. Hi Kelly, thank you for taking the time out to leave a comment! I think that sometimes the “powers that be” don’t really understand what social media is good for and I think that’s why the question “how does your brand view social media” gets looked over. I think everyone just assumes that the answer is a given, and it’s really not. I’ve engaged in conversations with people who tell me that they understand social media, but yet don’t use it themselves. It’s hard for me to believe that those people could be called “experts” and it’s unfortunate that some of those people are the decision makers. I believe that it is up to those that use social media and really understand it’s capabilities through experience to help those that do not understand it even though they say they do. People just see that it’s free, and then it’s off to the races with no plan. And with no plan they’re not ready to deal with the rush of conversation and attention that comes.

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