As a Social Media marketer, I come across many business owners and leaders who think of Social Media as a magic wand to boost business success. They have read of the great success others have had with Social Media and they want the same instant success. While still others will continue to refuse the use Social Media altogether, holding fast to the more traditional and ancient forms of marketing.
These two major misconceptions are the prevalent throughout the current business climate which really demonstrates just how poorly CEO’s and business leaders understand how Social Media works. One perception is a general abhorrence to anything new, this includes Social Media. This notion is not really a rejection of the tool itself as much as a stubborn refusal to change. This response is typically brought on by a prideful attitude concerning what has brought their business success in the past.
This business leader has not recognized the Social Media culture and for all intents and purposes, has removed the head off of his advertising axe. This type of leader will just continue to whack at the tree with a headless handle making very little progress. These people will also, unfortunately, even spend more hours doing what worked for them prior to the Social Media takeover, thinking it is just a matter or working longer hours or trying harder. You can whack at a tree with a blunt handle all day and night, until your hands are bloody but the result will always be the same, no success and “timbeerrr!” for you! For this line of thought there is no relief except that there be an awakening and acceptance to 21st century advancements just before the doors of opportunity close.
The second perception of social media is that it is some sort of almighty magic wand that can miraculously propel business forward with very little hard work. This idea can be far more dangerous than the first. The reason being is that at least the Social Media non-believers have room to grow and potentially open their minds to the idea of all its benefits. The second manager or owner will throw money at it without a true understanding of the Social Media process. Treating it more like an add-on or automatic upgrade instead of an advancement tool, so they give up on the process when it doesn’t produce the business success they were hoping for. This type of business leader will usually insist they tried it and it doesn’t work. Along with their opinion of its failure will also come the calculation of the money they believe they wasted on its use, as if this sum of money somehow proves its lack of efficiency. This second perception can be harmful to any company that wants to be succesful in the today’s highly competitive business climate.
Social Media is all about relationships. Relationships take time. Trust must be built and although it is the fastest tool for brand awareness, there is no wiggling nose genie that will “wish” your business into success or wave a magic cure all wand over it. While there are many wonderful things that Social Media can do here are some of things Social Media cannot do;
Social Media cannot motivate an unhappy staff that is providing poor customer service. It will identify the problems but it will not solve them.
Social Media cannot override or correct poor business decisions. It can’t improve an owner or manager with lack of experience or poor leadership skills.
Social Media is not a cure for laziness. It is not a “set it and forget it” system. It is hard work and it requires the participation from all levels of the company.
Social Media cannot make an outdated product, a bad idea or an antiquated service marketable. This culture is burying the past and although you may have been the shiniest penny in the 20th century it’s time to retool and get up to speed.
Social Media will not change your bottom line in three months. Social Media will help the best products and the best services get even better by giving them an audience but it is not a profit making machine, happy satisfied customers are.
Social Media is not an image maker. It will provide the possibility for fanfare and can create a buzz but the noise has to be backed by quality products and services. The 21st century consumer is much more informed than his 20th century counterpart.
Social Media cannot improve a humdrum website or dull promotional materials. Social Media can guide a consumer to your site but it cannot keep them there if consumer is not wowed by the presentation of what you are providing.
Real Social Media Success
As you can see Social Media is not the magic wand cure all for your business. Social Media can be a tool you use to measure viability in the market, what you need to improve and where your competition is coming from. Social Media will grease the tracks of a great product and help it get seen but ultimately its success still depends on satisfied customer reviews of the company. Even the best of Social Media marketers will need your help and participation to properly present and promote your product. So don’t be afraid to get in the action but remember what Social Media can and cannot do so that you understand the proper level of engagement that will be needed. Proper understanding of Social media will produce the leads and the conversion rates that are essential to to business success by creating profit and improving your bottom line.
CEO @ Viral Cast Media LLC.