Facebook "Like" A Threat To Small Business Reputation?
Business owners, particularly in the SME / SMB sector need to be extra careful about how the promote their company online. The use of social media for generating leads is now common in many industries, but there are risks attached to using some social media tools as this post illustrates.
A mistake many people make when marketing online is to arbitrarily use “like” or “add” buttons on pages and blog posts, simply as a way of raising the profile of a business to no particular prospects or market. Any publicity is good publicity, right? Wrong.
Anyone with a business to promote needs to think again about “joined up” marketing. Marketing a product or business service is a science. Using Facebook, Twitter or any other social media needs to be part of a marketing strategy otherwise there is no reason for using it. Yes, social media is free (to an extent - many of the better tools now cost a subscription to unlock features) but that does not mean it will do any good whatsoever. In fact the risk of being associated with a social media system that is not appropriate to the service / product being promoted (according to the public perception of said social media system, you understand) is considerable.
The temptation to dive in and start promoting a business using social media is huge. God knows, we need all the business we can lay our hands on right now, don’t we? Of course we do, but not at any cost. Staying in control of marketing and not letting it run it’s own course across social networking sites is more important than any amount of “likes”, “+1” or “tweets”.
In business, it is commonly known that a reputation / brand can take years to build and seconds to destroy. In the information age, that is truer than ever.