Quality or quantity when it comes to social media accounts?

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I had an interesting discussion with a fellow creative earlier this week, about whether a brand should be utilising all of the social media channels available to them, or focusing on a chosen few.

His thoughts were that as marketers we should utilise every channel available for our clients – even if they don’t seem relevant to their product or service. That way you can continue to engage with the target audience on one or two main platforms, but you also have a presence on others in case they happen to look for you on there.

I suppose there is some truth in what he is saying – after all social networking sites are increasingly being used as search engines – but should this shift in the way networking sites are being used mean that you should compromise a brand’s identity?

For example, should a serious technical brand really have a Facebook or Flickr profile – and does a fashion brand really need a presence on LinkedIn?

I was, and still am, of the stance that you should choose a few key platforms, which reflect the brand’s personality and aims, and do them well. It’s important to explore new trends as they emerge – but these should be analysed to see if they fit into a brand or organisation’s overall marketing strategy.

You shouldn’t just jump on the bandwagon – which would surely result in a poor presence across a whole host of sites instead of a sustained, focused, coherent presence, with quality content, on just a couple.

What do you think is better?  Not having a presence on every platform, and potentially missing engagement if someone only uses that platform? Or using social channels which aren’t quite right for your purposes or brand and which don’t get as much content TLC as others?

Here are some pros and cons of each strategy – I’d love to hear your thoughts.

I’m on every social media site going and its great because:

  • I can be found everywhere
  • I have maximum exposure
  • I can have all of the pretty icons on my website – which makes me look active and current

It sucks because:

  • I find it hard to update all of the sites with fresh content regularly
  • Not all of the platforms suit my brand messages
  • I find it hard to create meaningful connections across all platforms

I am selective with my social media sites and it’s great because:

  • I have a very strong presence on the ones I use
  • My time is spent well – I’m not spread thinly across lots of social networks
  • I am able to build up real repertoire with peers and customers

It sucks because:

  • I may miss customers on other sites
  • I may be too far behind on other platforms when they really gain popularity
  • I am not fully aware of other site’s capabilities and often worry I may be missing out – even if I think on the surface they aren’t suitable, or that I wouldn’t have the right content

Happy social media day – is anyone else bored?

I may be putting my head slightly above the proverbial parapet here, but I need to get something off my chest.

I am so bored of social media.

Shock! Horror!

Now, I know what you’re thinking.

How can you be bored of social media when you work in PR and communications? Social media is what the industry is all about at the moment.

But seriously, am I the only one who is I’m bored of talking about social media and discussing how great it is and how it has changed the shape of the media landscape forever?

The point is – we know this.

I’ve been feeling like this for a while now but seeing the announcements for today’s social media day, has finally pushed me over the edge and into writing my first ‘rant’ for this blog. (Although in all fairness, after closer inspection,  the idea behind the day and getting people to connect, I actually quite like).

Are you celebrating social media day?

The benefits of social media are huge, and I, more so than many of my colleagues, have embraced it and can see the benefits of it for both personal and professional use.

I have three Twitter accounts and look after the company and clients social media, but, like us all, I am still learning and I’m excited about what the platform of social media will bring to the table over the next few years.

But it’s the incessant talking about it which is driving me mad!

I’ve been to a fair few social media events recently and each time I have walked away with interesting talking points, but ultimately each event is the same – different experts saying the same thing in a slightly different way.

Now that’s not to say they are not useful events but instead of talking about it, surely it’s better to just get on and do it?

I expressed this on LinkedIn once and was quickly shot down and told that you need a ‘strategy’ before ‘just getting on with it.’

Really though?

Perhaps I’m being naïve, but surely just making sure you don’t say anything stupid, that you follow and befriend people who are of interest to your industry, and that you signpost articles and news that are of interest to the types of people you want to follow or befriend you, is strategy enough?

Social media is a slow burn.

It takes a long time to get results and when you do get them its bloody hard to measure the return on investment. I’d rather just get stuck in and get the ball rolling.

Perhaps the reason I’m frustrated is that I like things that are black and white or yes or no and the one thing I have picked up from all this conversation about social media is that there is no yes or no answers.

Does spelling matter if it’s social?

I’ve just logged into my LinkedIn account and a poll came up titled ‘Does your company have and follow an editorial process for social media to avoid typos and grammatical errors in postings?’

At the time of writing this, the results were 64% No and 35% Yes (whatever happened to the other 1% I’m not entirely sure!)

I find this statistic quite interesting. After all – in what other instance would copy be issued into the public domain without being proofed? I work in a fairly small B2B team and every press release and feature written is proofed by at least two members of staff.

The quality of written work is of the utmost importance in the PR industry. It’s the one thing we should be able to do with our eyes closed.

I would be mortified if I sent out a press release full of grammatical errors and spelling mistakes.

But with social media it appears that it’s OK.

In fact, even if you did have an editorial process in place, as suggested in the LinkedIn poll, would you actually be able to follow it?

After all, if the apostrophe in ‘there’s’ or the space between a full stop and the start of a new sentance means you total 141 characters instead of 140, what would you do?

Delete the apostrophe of course! Surely it’s accepted with such a tight word limit?

(I’d like to see the papers use that excuse next time a sub editor is struggling with a headline).

It’s interesting to see if this will ever stray into more traditional PR and media, especially considering the high use of ‘text talk’ over the last few years.

However, I can’t see it happening any time soon. As an industry, I think we’re still too proud for that.