In part two of a series on why companies are slow to embrace social media, I want to look at another common excuse I hear from existing clients. When questioned as to why they have yet to get involved in social media, they complain that there is no one within their company who can actually monitor any social media sites they get involved with.
Companies understand that having social media profiles is somewhat like having a bunch of little web sites, all of which need to be maintained. They understand they not only need to get involved in the actual communities surrounding social media properties, but monitor and respond to any conversation that takes place as well.
The common excuse is that they simply do not have the resources available to them to deal with social media. In other words, everyone else is busy doing something else and hiring someone specifically to involve the company in social media is out of the question.
I would argue this as an invalid excuse by first pointing out the fact that companies fail to see the value of social media.
I’d also remind them that prior to the Internet when companies did not even have web sites, they neither had staff to run those site because they did not exist. However, once the Internet came along and companies launched web sites, they either hired in-house staff to manage those sites or at the very least used the services of an outside company.
Nowadays no matter how small the company, if you have a web site, you no doubt have at least one person who is responsible for it. That person may wear many hats but nonetheless, somebody is monitoring the company site for inquiries, updates to products or services, making sure site is up and running, etc.
An additional step to monitoring a web site is to market it. In fact this has become the norm, especially with regards to organic search. Most businesses understand that people are using search engines and those who are smart want to make sure they can be found by those seeking them.
This has forced many companies once again to either hire in-house staff to manage web site marketing efforts or use the services of an outside firm.
Now we have social media and it is bigger than ever. MySpace, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and others are attracting millions of users. If companies continue to ignore these social media spaces, they will miss the opportunity to tap into an extraordinary user base.
Therefore if you do not have a team or at least one individual in place to help your company not only get involved in social media but monitor the process, hire a person, put together a team or even outsource to a company who can help you monitor your involvement in social media.
Ignoring the problem is only going to stunt your growth and may even cripple your business for life. Companies that are healthy and growing are looking for ways to tap into social media, in the same way they tapped into search several years ago.
The next post in this series will deal with yet another common excuse I often hear – “we have no money.”