While social media is a great way to interact with your customers, it can also put your reputation on the line. Lucy Hall speaks to some SMEs to see how they manage their social media forums…
“Honesty and a timely response are crucial when dealing with negative comments on social media. Mistakes happen and if they do, it’s best to be transparent. It’s easy to suffer from ‘brand bias’ and try to defend your company by covering it up or appropriating blame elsewhere. Hold your hands up and be honest – customers appreciate it in the long run. It’s wise to prepare replies to potential queries in advance so that your community manager can respond quickly and appropriately. There’s nothing worse than leaving a negative mention without a reply. Even if you can’t solve the issue right away, let the person know you’re working on it.
Hannah Rainford, Senior Social Manager, Jellyfish
“We manage all our social media accounts in-house and it has really helped us boost our visibility, outreach and even resulted in direct sales leads. By doing all our social media internally and having the core team use their own accounts, we can ensure we appear authentic, connect with people and have a personality that people can trust. There is obviously a risk associated with this and by having unmoderated social activity, we are aware that one of our team might be saying things that might not be well received all the time. To counter this, we have some broad guidelines, but ultimately we trust our team to say and do the right thing."
Sarat Pediredla, CEO, Hedgehog Lab
By focusing on the social networks that our target audience is active on we’ve been able to utilise our time effectively and grow our presence on social networks that deliver a return. After using social media for several years we know updates about the company perform best on Facebook, while market commentary is popular with our Twitter followers. Pinterest has been the perfect medium for our property company, as choosing a home is often about buying a lifestyle, not just the bricks and mortar. You’ll find us sharing visual content on Pinterest, curating boards that appeal to a wide range of interests.
Carla Bradman, Marketing Manager, Paramount
Lucy Hall is a social media and online marketing consultant and founder of Social Day, the social media forum for SMEs. See details of the London event at http://socialday.co.uk/