If You Build It, You Need To Interact

Kevin Barenblat has a great blog post on iMediaconnection.com that focuses on the eight brand personalities that Facebook and Twitter users hate. It is worth a read.

One of the hated personalities, he says, is the non-responder.  There are some great Facebook pages out there that have taken energy and effort to build and then, just when an organization seems to be on the verge of really engaging their community—nothing. People are talking, asking questions, chatting and there is no response or connection from the organization. When people are left hanging, the organization loses credibility.

There are several opportunities to respond that weren’t available a few years ago. One that it often overlooked is the daily news – whether print or broadcast – for the most part, it’s online and readers can comment. I can’t tell you how many communicators smack themselves on the forehead and say, “Oh yeah, I forgot about that,” when I ask them if they monitor the daily news and if they respond, when appropriate.

Facebook is another area. It surprises me when an organization has gone to the effort to create a Facebook page and build a community there and then they just update but don’t engage with the people. One of the challenges here is that many business professionals have not yet embraced the two-way street of communication that social media offers. They think of Facebook and other tools as a way to broadcast their information, not to have a conversation. While there are opportunities to send out information, it is crucial that before any organization makes the decision to participate in social media that they have, indeed, made the decision to participate.

I know it can seem overwhelming. Keeping up-to-date on what is being discussed, commenting and responding can appear to be a real challenge for the over-worked communicator. One of the things we do with clients when looking at how to approach the added work necessary to keep your social media outreach interactive, engaging and authentic is to review what communications tools are currently being used. Times have changed and not all of the tools that provided results in the past work today. Take a solid look at what you are currently doing and what is working. In that mix, there is probably something that can be retired, allowing you to replace it with Facebook, Twitter or another social media tool or network. You only have so much time in a day, a limited budget and limited resources. How are you going to best spend them in today’s online-connected world?

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