Social Media Simplified


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Document for small and medium businesses and broadcasters planning use of online social networks to connect with customers and audience.

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Social Media Simplified

  1. 1. 2012 Social Media Simplified Social Media Thinking Revised Social media and social networks are simple when you first think of people with family, friends and associates and last you consider technology used to connect people online. James Rowe 3/18/2012
  2. 2. Social Media SimplifiedLet’s start our exercise using text messaging restrictions of 160 characters to simply explain social media. Social media is how people communicate with each other online.Social media and social networks are really easy. Think about how you relate to family, friends and business and public service associates. Now consider whethercustomers and members use Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google or another medium as their preferred online social network. Always consider technology used toconnect people online last.In this document Rowe and Company offers easy guides for small and medium businesses and community groups to plan for the upsurge in social media. We believeit’s a method for thinking about online social networks. Social Media and Networks A facile approach to appreciate social networks and media is to begin to define terms individually. We’ll use meanings. Social - pertaining to, devoted to, or characterized by friendly companionship or relations: a social club. Network - an association of individuals having a common interest, formed to provide mutual assistance, helpful information, or the like: a network of recent college graduates. Media – (medium) - one of the means or channels of general communication, information, or entertainment in society, as newspapers, radio, or television.Take the words literally and you clearly see social and network relate to people and media or medium refers to technology. Consistently think of humanity first andtechnology last in deciding social networks and media; the tools you’ll use to connect with customers and members. P. O. Box 853, Shirley, MA 01464| Telephone (617) 652-0611| | - 2 -
  3. 3. Social Media Simplified Offline and Online WorldsIn the age of digital literacy we have offline and online lives. Our real life should govern our virtual or online life. They are astonishingly different because oftechnology. Think about real life; how you connect with friends, family and business associates. How you relate to customers and members in the real world is yourstarting point.Here’s an example of real world networks and their disconnection. Offline Life The real world is made of detached social networks. P. O. Box 853, Shirley, MA 01464| Telephone (617) 652-0611| | - 3 -
  4. 4. Social Media SimplifiedSome friends, customers and members in real world social networks overlap, however we relate to the disparate groups in different ways. Social media tools can beused professionally to connect different real world networks securely and productively. Offline relationships should determine online networks chosen to connect realworld customers and members; it’s your so-called “style of engagement.”A financial advisor presented me a simple way to consider real life relationships. He labeled his scheme “Introduction to Success” and his chart asks you to tell him ofrelationships he can contact. Introduction to Success Chart BCF • best current friend BOF • best old friend CFM • closest family member CBA • closest business associateAs we think about our network of friends and associates a conflicting social experience reveals itself; it is the different faces of each network. Customers and membershave social differences to be respected, as well. The diversity of personalities depicted in distinct social networks is a real business and public service consideration.The concern affects online tools you choose to engage members and customers. P. O. Box 853, Shirley, MA 01464| Telephone (617) 652-0611| | - 4 -
  5. 5. Social Media SimplifiedPaul Adams, user experience researcher for Google, explores discrete personalities and how they conflict online in his lengthy presentation “Bridging the gap betweenour online and offline social network.” Adams’ slide show inspects how we have a particular face for family, another for friends, and yet another for business.We accept varied relationships without thought because these networks are usually detached. The lack of thought however creates discord when using social media.The online world is yet to develop experiences mirroring our offline lives. Digital life most often thoughtlessly connects distinct networks transferred from the realworld. The thoughtlessness is a significant concern for business and community groups when choosing online social networks.The most popular of social networks is facebook, based on its claim of 500-million user accounts and growing. The site’s popularity sparked a gold rush for socialnetworks and people connections. Adams posits facebook as testament of online social disconnects in his slideshare presentation.The list of major social networks is fluid. Wikipedia, another popular type of social network, maintains an archive of surviving social media and defunct virtualnetworks. These networks are tools businesses and community groups need understand to develop a social media blueprint.Differences and conflicts between real world social networks and online social media help determine steps to maintain a good business and public service reputation.The label “reputation management” enters the lexicon because of disparities in offline and online living. There are service businesses cropping up to manage onlinereputations, however you can take precautions to adequately protect your brand and image as you prepare a social media strategy. P. O. Box 853, Shirley, MA 01464| Telephone (617) 652-0611| | - 5 -
  6. 6. Social Media Simplified Social Media BlueprintHere’s a method to begin thinking of a strategy for social media in business and public service. Forrester Research, a Cambridge, Massachusetts firm, developed a fourstep process to determine your own social network model. Forrester’s Groundswell project labels their method the POST process for building a blueprint. People • real world social activities of customers and members Objectives • goals for connecting with members and customers Strategy • blueprint to connect online with members and customers Technology • mediums best serving business and public service objectivesThe P O S T process works for choosing any technology but it is especially appropriate in determining social networks suited to business and community organizations. P. O. Box 853, Shirley, MA 01464| Telephone (617) 652-0611| | - 6 -
  7. 7. Social Media Simplified Business ExamplesIn my opinion one of the best social media projects is funded by soft drink maker Pepsi. The manufacturer’s Refresh Project is a brilliant socially oriented marketingstrategy using public service to bolster their image and brand. Refresh offers millions of dollars to anyone who is willing to resolve social problems. It’s engaging. It’sinteractive and it’s social. Pardon the pun but it is refreshing.New England supermarket chain Hannaford demonstrates business prudence in reputation management. Hannaford’s facebook page displays a “Terms of Use”statement for engaging its family oriented customers. Their facebook “Terms of Use” links to Hannaford’s corporate social media policy. The clear statement warnsthe food stores restrict use of their facebook page with these words: “While we want everybodys voice to be heard, we ask that our fans refrain from posting comments that are not appropriate for this forum. We will delete posts and comments that are disrespectful, inappropriate or otherwise disruptive to the community. We also reserve the right to remove posts that are unrelated to Hannaford Supermarkets.”Sean Patrick’s Restaurant in central Massachusetts offers an example of customer service and management of social media critique. We all know it is difficult to pleaseeveryone all the time. Social media presents excellent prospects to handle customer service issues, though. Among complimentary expressions on Sean Patrick’sfacebook page Rebecca Hupfeld zapped the establishment with a one star review of her dining experience. In response to her criticism the restaurant’s pageadministrator wrote: “Sean Patrick Flannagan Rebecca we are so sorry to hear that you are disappointed with our food. You are correct gourmet foods is not what we offer. However, if you are interested in something different and a little more upscale please come back and try Chef Joses Tapas meals offered on Tuesaday and Wednesday Nights 5:00 - 9:00. Jose brings a new flavor to Sean Patricks one you may prefer!”Social media is a seemingly unmanageable place as best shown on the WTF is my social media strategy website. The site, a parody of language social media gurusoften use, is risqué and snarky. While the page is humorous, its creators “About” page explains the lesson offered. The parody is a take on experiences so manybusinesses complain of when trying to learn how to professionally use social media. P. O. Box 853, Shirley, MA 01464| Telephone (617) 652-0611| | - 7 -
  8. 8. Social Media Simplified ConclusionSocial media and networks are simple when you think of people first and technology last. In business and public service a blueprint for social media is required and theP O S T process is one of the easiest methods to formulate simple strategy.Rowe and Company offers affordable services to guide businesses and community groups in selecting correct social networks and methods to connect with customersand members. We take away the stress of thinking about which technology is best for your objectives and the media you require to reach customers and members.R&C shows you how to professionally grow your business and public service with social media. P. O. Box 853, Shirley, MA 01464| Telephone (617) 652-0611| | - 8 -
  9. 9. Social Media Simplified Rowe and Company is SocialConnections Social Media Thinking Video Email Website Blogs Rowe and Company Twitter YouTube Pages facebook Linkedin Google Phone (617) 652-0611Ask for a proposal from Rowe and Company; your resource for social media. P. O. Box 853, Shirley, MA 01464| Telephone (617) 652-0611| | - 9 -
  10. 10. Social Media SimplifiedWe’re big picture consultants, project managers, instructors and media technologists at Rowe and Company.R&C trains employees and members in new technology and social media skills; we project manage social media strategy and implementation; we assist in contentcreation and management of rich media such as videos, slide presentations and electronic documents.We manage social media for you when you require a full service and customized project blueprint.Rowe and Company helps your business or non-profit organization grow through sharing with your community in your own way.Call - (617) 652-0611 or email - Word of mouth buzz. P. O. Box 853, Shirley, MA 01464| Telephone (617) 652-0611| | - 10 -
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