Social Media is like a Free Puppy.

Free Puppy anyone?

@mstonerblog was frustrated w/folks who said social media is “great cause it’s free”. His response was “Yes, it’s free, like a ‘free’ puppy.” Exactly!! It’s a responsibility.

My bit in the “What’s Hot in Technology” session at the ACUI Annual Conference earlier this month was the social media section. You can’t talk tech without a bit of social media. I went over some recent tech fails such as Poland Springs not capitalizing on the Marco Rubio response to the State of the Union address when he went to reach for some water. Saturday Night Live even spoofed the moment. CNET pointed out that Poland Spring was asleep at the wheel — its Twitter account hadn’t been used since 2011.

Here’s another one. In mid-February, American Airlines’ policy of replying politely to every tweet, no matter what, backfired. People began tweeting insults at the company like this:

screen shot 2013-02-14 at 11.12.12 am

Scripted responses do not work which lead to my biggest point:

DO NOT START AN ACCOUNT WITH ANY SOCIAL MEDIA UNLESS YOU ARE READY FOR THE RESPONSIBILITY.

Are you ready to post at least once a day something relevant to your site? Do you know WHY you are even using said social media in the first place? What are your goals? Marketing? Recruitment? Building community?

Are you ready to hire staff to strategically plan out what you are going to post, and when, and what, and how (will it be a video? A poll? A picture?). Are you ready to supervise these folks and what they are posting? You have to know the medium to know what should be posted or you may just get in trouble not using it appropriately. Just because a student “knows Facebook” that doesn’t mean they fully understand what the goals of your page are or how to best represent your organization’s ideals.

Sure it’s free on the outset. Social media seems free – but it’s totally NOT! It takes time to maintain a great page whether it be Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, Vimeo, etc. (Or all of them at the same time). Time is money people!

What’s hot with Social Media? Using it appropriately and in a timely, authentic manner. We talked in our session about Oreo’s social media team knocking it out of the park EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. They are just killin’ it right now. Timely& effective!

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So brand new Social Media Account Managers (Did you know that’s what you are? You didn’t think it was a big deal to take this on – but it is!) engage with your audience – but make sure you are prepared for the wonder that is a new puppy of sorts. It will have needs. Are you ready?

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2 thoughts on “Social Media is like a Free Puppy.

  1. Adriane Reilly says:

    We were JUST talking about social media needing to be fed, and loved, and taken care of like a puppy at our social media task force this week! Thanks for sharing!

    Like

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