Facebook this. Twitter that. Today you can’t walk out your front door without encountering the pervasive nature of Social Media. It’s on the T.V. when they talk about current events. It’s what some newspaper articles use for expert quotes. And, more often than not, it’s part of an integrated and expansive component of companies. Yet, perhaps it is important to discuss WHY they are needed.

Social Media is, in my definition, the next step of communication in an electronic and globalized world. It is the community use of information that goes beyond the one to one (such as snail mail, or most telephone calls) and the one to many model of communication (such as those of email broadcasts or blog posts) to that of a many-to-many type of communication that relies on conversations between people/authors/peers where everyone is on the same level. This is why Social Media is so important to companies; they allow for open communication between clients and vendors.

Plus, it’s not just the “kids” that are taking up Social Media Platforms. Forrester, a marketing research company, recently published their report that found 82% (or close to four out of five) of adults in the United States participate in the conversation online. Compared to the 56% that used Social Media in 2007, this is a huge jump. It also means that companies can no longer ignore the need for an online presence.

However, it is important to note that just having a Facebook page or Twitter account is not going to magically change things for a company. Like any sort of marketing or public relations standards a company has, there also needs to be a set of standards for Social Media. This would include frequency of updates, what the goals are for interaction, and what the voice is that the company portrays through these medium. As communication gets more and more electronic (and coincidentally loses the inflection and tone inherent in verbal communication) these Social Media interactions need to all portray the same “voice”.

This may seem like a difficult task, especially to those new to such online environments, but it doesn’t have to be! The experts here at Red Rocket Web Specialists can help to build a comprehensive Social Media strategy that works. Just contact us today to find out how!

More in public relations, Research, social media, Social Media PR
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