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How your business can avoid a social media crisis

Having a social media presence for your company is a fantastic idea, whether it's selling products or services to B2B or B2C markets. There's a lot more to social media marketing than posting a few pictures once or twice a week. As many companies have shown, it's easy to fail your social media presence, and your customers will never forget.
When putting a social media campaign in place, it’s worth looking at who is running the campaign and their experience as well. After all, the social media accounts need to not only represent your company, but its image and owners. It may be a good idea to make sure these employees have at least been on a few basic marketing courses and aren't interns.

Here are a few things to avoid in your social media accounts.

Your social media account is not personal

There’s a lot of responsibility that comes with having a social media account. In fact, it’s a lot harder than it looks, especially for a business. As an individual, you can air your views on religion, politics, and even your deepest thoughts if you so chose to do so. For companies, they need to be engaging enough to get consumers to click on their links, as well as carry an air of respect around them.

If your business is posting political or religious statements, then it’s time to reassess your company. After all, would you still buy from a store that you know supports the opposite of your opinion? Be sure to stay away from these subjects as they not only lead to heated battles on social media but can leave potential consumers with a bad taste in their mouths. This doesn't mean you shouldn't support social initiatives, such as creating a green business or helping out in a national crisis.

Keep in mind that anything that is posted from your social media account is seen by everyone. Don’t post something that you will later regret.

Your language can define your brand

The use of language should also be at the forefront of how you convey your social media messages. It may seem fun and interesting to use whatever words are currently being used within the social media zeitgeist, but is it necessary?

Food brands can often get away with cheeky adverts and those that use slang, but the same can’t be said for a financial institution. Having a corporate company use words like “fleek” makes them appear to be that old co-worker who tries too hard to bond with junior members of staff. Basically, it’s not a good image for your brand to have.

Don’t do memes

Brands kill memes. The moment a company or business puts out their own take on a meme or popular joke, it almost immediately kills that meme. Just take a look at the mannequin challenge, which had office workers and friends frozen in the moment as they were filmed. It was interesting for the first few days, but it dropped off quickly. Not to mention how many companies were still participating in the meme long after it had died out.

Don’t ignore customers and remove negativity

At some point, your company is going to make a mistake. These things happen and if they’re not handled as they happen, the customer will more than likely complain on social media. Too many businesses either tend to completely ignore complaints and negative feedback, or issue a copy and paste response. Consumers don’t want to hear “we’ll get back to you” with an undefined date or even a resolution. It’s bad press and it doesn’t wash away.

Having customers complain publicly shouldn’t be seen as something bad and it’s not something to freak out over, either. In fact, it’s a chance to not only do something good publicly by attending to the problem, but gather valuable feedback on your product or solution as well. If a customer complains that they received bad service in-store, or their food was off, it’s a way for your to look deeper into your company and find out where faults may lie.

If a customer leaves a negative comment or review on your Facebook page, for example, then don’t hide it. Be sure to publicly engage with them in order to solve the issue and have them potentially change their view of you.

Those are a few ways in which you can avoid a social media crisis. It’s all about common sense and thinking of how consumers will perceive your company.

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Rogerwilco's press office

Rogerwilco
Rogerwilco is one of South Africa's leading creative digital marketing agencies based in Durbanville in Cape Town's northern suburbs.
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