What’s Worth More to You – The Cost of Your Reputation or the Cost to Monitor Your Reputation?
Posted by Danny Brown | Jun,29 2012
A few weeks ago, Heather Whaling shared the story of Nationwide and how they responded to what could have been a very difficult situation.
While there was still come criticism about the response possibly being less “human” than it could have been from the various Nationwide accounts, it was still a great example of reacting quickly to douse potential flames.
It was also a great reminder that social media needn’t be scary for businesses worried about negative statements posted about them online (one of the biggest stumbling blocks for any business owner when it comes to social media).
This is especially true, given the low-cost entry to monitoring your brand and effectively responding to both criticism as well as praise. And yet companies still have a fear factor around social media – so how can they overcome that?
Cost of Involvement versus Cost of Silence
One of the early phrases that came out of social media’s ubiquity was “the conversation is happening whether you like it or not”.
This is probably one of the biggest reasons companies got scared to start with – talk about a statement to put the fear of God in you!
The thing is, it should be the complete opposite – conversations about brands have always happened. In the supermarket shopping with friends; over a beer in the local bar; chatting on the telephone; picking the kids up from school and talking with other parents.
These are the conversations brands should be afraid of, because they’re the ones they don’t get to see.
Social media, on the other hand, is so open and searchable that smart businesses can create searches based around their brand or products, and see exactly what’s being said; when it’s being said; and what the impact on the brand might be.
And it doesn’t need to break the bank, either, but can save the reputation of the brand in return, which has to worth any investment, no?
Consolidating to Keep Cost and Time Investment Down
Perhaps one of the bigger reasons that many businesses are still staying away from social media is due to the investment costs. Not just financial, but time investment too.
After all, while the tools – for the most part – may be free, it still costs money to set up a team (or monitor the platforms yourself). Add to that the fact you usually need to have multiple windows open to have all your networks covered, and it can become overpowering pretty quickly.
Yet it doesn’t need to be.
The rise of social media dashboards in the last couple of years have helped to consolidate several accounts into one area, which helps with the time suck factor.
Additionally, there have been great advances in the way online conversations are filtered, to ensure only the information you want is displayed, versus the blabber that may or may not be about you.
With social media dashboards, you can:
- Link multiple social media accounts to keep track off.
- Display full social feeds – Twitter, Facebook, etc. – to negate the need for separate windows for each account.
- Track sentiment – negative and positive – about your brand so you can respond quickly (like Nationwide did).
- Monitor keywords around your business, product and customer pain points to really connect with your consumers or users.
- Track analytics to see where business campaigns are working and where they need more work.
Once you have all that information, you can begin to take control of your brand’s perception again, and grab the advantage needed over your competitor to stay both competitive and effective.
Throw in a social media dashboard that not only gives you all of the above, but lets you create Facebook promotions and marketing videos from within the admin area, and you couldn’t ask for anything more.
Just as well there’s a dashboard that does that, eh?
About the Author: Danny Brown is the social sensei at Bonsai Interactive, a small and mighty team of technology, media and marketing nerds rocking the social web. His blog is featured in the AdAge Power 150 list as well as Canada’s Top 50 Marketing Blogs, and won the Hive Award for Best Social Media Blog at the 2010 South by South West festival. You can find Danny on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.