The media landscape has been completely changed with the impact of technology. Currently, it is incumbent upon companies and organizations to create their own media. Social media is a popular channel for private companies to reach a larger audience – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Snapchat, FourSquare, you name it. Gone are the days where companies compete for top spots in yellow pages or paying massive premiums for radio ads.
The situation is a lot more complex for publicly traded companies that are heavily regulated. However, with meticulous and proper planning, your public companies can benefit massively from the wide exposure gained from advertising on various social media platforms. Specifically, LinkedIn and Twitter are two platforms that are usually very popular and well received by shareholders and investors of public companies. Depending on the industry, Facebook and Instagram can be very helpful as well, especially for companies that have a lot of B2C business.
Facebook alone accounts for one in every six minutes spent on the internet. One in every five minutes spent on smartphones are also attributed to Facebook. Close to half of all college graduates are LinkedIn users. Over 45% of all adults who make more than $75,000 annually are on LinkedIn. Over 88% of businesses with more than 100 employees use Twitter for communication, marketing and advertising.
Here is a six-step process we have derived for maximize your social media efforts.
Step 1: Research
Find out who are talking about your company, and how. Are there any misconceptions of your business model? Are employees sharing information on the world wide web?
Always remember a cohesive social media plan should be very comprehensive. Setup alerts that track the online mentions of your company and your key executives. You will quickly find out about what people say about your company on the internet.
Step 2: Establish a Basic Presence
Make sure you secure your company’s accounts on all the major social media platforms. This is a great opportunity for your company to have a positive brand presence on the internet when people search for your name.
Step 3: Develop a Plan
Once you understand how social media can integrate with your business, you can develop a plan to achieve your objectives, and figure out how that would connect with your overall business goals. The conversation online will go on either you participate or not. Hence, if your plan is to simply continue to monitor the internet, you should at least create a social media policy.
Step 4: Engagement
If you decide to be proactive in managing your social media, you will need to figure out how much of an engagement level would you like to upkeep. While social media can be a great channel to keep your investors and key partners updated between earnings announcements, it is not necessarily worthy of an official press release. You can use your social media platforms to share press release headlines, key messages from your earnings calls, answer questions, publish white papers and offer seminars.
Step 5: Integration
Integrate your social media platforms with your digital investor relations platform (website). The website should be a hub of information that is detailed and useful. Provide regular updates of content on the site, and push the content to your social media accounts. The more your investors visit your website (also via your social media platforms), the more they will think of your website as the first source of information. Inform website visitors which social media platforms your company is active on.
Step 6: Measurement
The real value of social media programs can be measured with several metrics, gauging its progress. Many Software-as-a-Service platforms provide subscribers with analytical packages, which help you establish a baseline, target audience, and follow social media user trends over time.
Should you have any questions or if you are interested in Uptick’s Social Media Program, please do not hesitate to contact Terry Tremaine at: 604-202-7841 or [email protected]
This story was written by Uptick Media and featured in Service Providers magazine.