September 24, 2010 at 9:02 pm #111784
Re-posted from the ChatterBachs blog:
Social media is a two-way street. If it’s treated merely as a platform for pushing the organization’s agenda, you’re missing the point
and the real value of social media. If you’re not listening, you”re not
truly connecting with your customers.
Let’s look at Twitter. A few impressions (not scientific, mind you, but observations nonetheless) from my own experience…
First, if I see an account’s Twitter feed that’s only filled with their announcements, press releases, or company news, I wonder about
their commitment to the social media platform. It also leaves me
wondering about their commitment to their customers. If I don’t see
retweets, replies, or mentions, I question their engagement. If they’re
not interested in assisting others in a virtual environment, how much
are they really willing to assist in person, over the phone, or via
Furthermore, unless you’re famous (and I mean really famous), most people are not going want to follow your Twitter account unless you’re
following them back. When I find an account that has too low of a
follower to following ratio, I wonder if it’s legitimate (particularly
when there may be no avatar/profile photo, customized background, and/or
fewer than 20 tweets). However, when I see an account that has far too
high of a follower to following ratio, it leaves me with the equally
dangerous impression that perhaps they’re thinking too much about
themselves and not enough about their customers (or potential
customers). I’m less likely to follow; and thus, less likely to list.
For those of you who may be new to this, listing on Twitter is a way to
categorize; it’s also a way to give a nod to those who are your
favorites or you get valuable information from.
Social media should make you more accessible and transparent. Social media should make you more responsive, but it still takes
people. You see… social media doesn’t just automatically transform
organizations; social media is a reflection or extension of what is
already there. And, if you don’t like what you’re seeing from the
mirror of social media, perhaps it’s time to change what’s being
reflected and not time to buy a new mirror.
September 24, 2010 at 11:59 pm #111797
Great advice! And the research backs you on the effect of Twitter – http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/study_twitter_isnt_very_social.php
September 27, 2010 at 5:01 pm #111795
Jay you hit a lot of important points here. Especially in the area of followers. Sadly it’s become common that having a higher follow list than followers looks poorly upon that account. While you can place organizations and RSS type twitter users in a lost, reducing your following number, it still makes it slightly more difficult to pay attention to them constantly.
September 29, 2010 at 8:30 pm #111793
I think many organizations make the mistake of equating social media as the new press release. As the voice of my organization’s Facebook, Twitter and YouTube channels we regularly respond to questions and comments — including some quite rude comments to our YouTube videos. I found that by responding to people’s concerns I get very supportive comments from those people in the future.
I think people are genuinely surprised that actual humans live behind government sites. Nice humans!
September 30, 2010 at 1:59 pm #111791
Bill, thanks for the feedback and for the link. I re-posted that article elsewhere.
September 30, 2010 at 2:05 pm #111789
Thanks for weighing in, Elliot. I routinely go back and clear out many (not all) who don’t follow back. As I do this, I think they wasted an opportunity for another set of ears, a customer, and/or a potential champion for their blog, product, or cause. They’re also lost the possibility of mentions and retweets from an engaged account with a significant number of followers. I think your point also begs the question… how many RSS feeds can one reasonably follow? I know the number has to be much lower than the number of Twitter accounts one can follow.
September 30, 2010 at 2:07 pm #111787
Good morning, Amy. Thanks for your comments and insights. Glad to see that you are providing the interaction and engagement that social media warrants. This definitely wins friends, fans, and followers!
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