Though a portion of my work is creating social media strategies and campaigns for organizations, I don’t think social media (SM) is suited to every business.
Probably every organization can benefit from some social media presence, but having a presence does not mean you have a strategy. Without that planning before and after, you could be wasting valuable time and money.
The four most common possible disadvantages I see:
- You will need additional resources to manage your online SM presence. That can range from reassigning some of a current employee’s time, hiring a new employee for SM, or having a third-party manage your SM.
- I have seen companies make the mistake of making a current employee take on SM “part-time” and it being insufficient. The same thing happened in the 1990s with websites. Social media is even more immediate than websites and needs daily monitoring. Organizations that don’t actively manage their social media presence, probably won’t see real benefits.
- Your strategy should begin with an audit of your current online presence and that of your competitors and partners, and include monitoring those other organizations. Do you belong in LinkedIn and Facebook? Is Snapchat something to consider or avoid? Do you need multiple Twitter accounts in order to target your messaging and be more granular about your audience’s interests?
- Social media open you up to the risk of unwanted or inappropriate behaviour on your network sites. Social media is all about engaging with the public, but that also open you up to harassment. Risks can include negative feedback, information leaks or hacking. False or misleading claims made on your social media channels by your business or by a customer can be subject to consumer law. Even customer/follower posts and testimonials that are misleading or deceptive to other customers, particularly about competitor products/services may result in your business being fined.